Utah’s Democrats are scrambling to find a candidate in one of their “targeted” races after their candidate unexpectedly decided against a run. Celina Milner, who narrowly lost to Rep. Johnny Anderson by just 791 votes in 2012, looked to be spoiling for a rematch this year…until this weekend.
“I’ve decided to be a mom over politics,” Milner tells UtahPolicy of her decision not to run again. “I’m a single mom with a daughter who is 14 and a son who is 12. Hopefully there will be another window of opportunity to run for office again, but I won’t have another window to be a mom.”
Milner was part of a slate of Latina candidates the Democrats planned to put forward in 2014, and the party believed she had a real shot at unseating Anderson this time.
“My campaign has been full-steam ahead with all signs pointing to ‘yes’ for another run,” says Milner. “I’ve been looking at the numbers, and this seat (House District 34) is winnable. It’s not hard at all. I was just looking at the cost this would have on my family, and that’s not worth it to me.”
Milner says the party has a backup candidate they’re working on convincing to jump into the race at this late date, and she’s hoping to get back into the political arena sometime down the line. She specifically says she might be interested in challenging Republican Sen. Wayne Harper in 2016.
Still, she’s disappointed that she is not making a run this year.
“I’m a flaming feminist and I want to believe that women can do it all, but I don’t want to sacrifice my kids to feed my political ego.”