NEW YORK (Reuters) - The cliché that all is fair in love and war will be tested on Long Island, where Republican Mark Schimel has announced he will run to oust his estranged Democratic wife, New York State Assembly woman Michelle Schimel, from office.
"We questioned him very closely to make sure that this wasn't a forum to fight a personal battle," said Frank Moroney, the North Hempstead Republican chairman, adding he was confident there would be a "dignified, issue-oriented" campaign about taxes and government spending.
"I hope he isn't getting cold feet as a result of all of this notoriety," Moroney said, adding that Mark Schimel informed the party that the couple had "come to the end of the road in their relationship" and were seeking a divorce.
Michelle Schimel's campaign spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment, and Mark Schimel could not immediately be reached.
The news was greeted with dismay by at least one observer, Mark Schimel's mother, Irma.
"I can't believe he'd do a thing like this. I'm going to talk to him," Irma Schimel told the New York Daily News. "He'll never win anything against Michelle."
(Reporting By Edith Honan; Editing by Cynthia Johnston)