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Showing posts with label NY-19 Decides. Show all posts
Showing posts with label NY-19 Decides. Show all posts

NY-19 Decides: Election Night Live Blog

Written By Cicero on 6/26/18 | 6/26/18

11:35 PM - With all but one precinct reporting, here are the unofficial but final for tonight results:

Delgado - 7,690 (22%: won Dutchess, Montgomery, Schoharie, and Ulster Counties)
Rhodes - 6,242 (17.9%: won Columbia, Delaware, Sullivan Counties)
Ryan - 6,194 (17.7%: won Broome and Rensselaer Counties)
Flynn - 4,608 (13.2%: won Greene and Otsego Counties)
Beals - 4,608 (13.2%)
Clegg - 3,873 (11.1%)
Collier - 1,700 (4.9%)

11:21 PM - The New York Times has called NY-19 for Antonio Delgado, who currently has just over 22% of the vote in with only a few precincts remaining.

11:20 PM - With all precincts in, Rhodes has won Columbia County with 28.89% of the vote. While he has won three counties tonight, it's likely not enough to keep up with Delgado's four counties and impressive vote shares.

11:16 PM - Delgado can add tiny Montgomery County to his list of victories tonight, as he claims the county with 28.3% of the vote to Flynn's 19% and Ryan's 17%.

11:10 PM - Ryan has won Rensselaer County with 29.3% of the vote according to the New York Times. With almost all precincts in - again, according to the Times - it seems as if Delgado will win with roughly 22% of the vote.

11:04 PM - There's not that many precincts left (only 79 are still uncounted according to the state Board of Elections) and Delgado is leading Rhodes by roughly 1,300 votes. Also - roughly 32,000 Democrat votes have been counted thus far - roughly 60% more than in 2016's primary.

11:02 PM - Ulster County is finally complete and Delgado has won it by only 150 votes over Kingston native Dave Clegg. Ryan placed third and Rhodes was a close but just far enough fourth.

10:50 PM - Rhodes is the winner in Delaware County, beating out Flynn by only 32 votes for a 21.43% to 19.25% victory in the rural area. With 364 precincts in out of 458 district wide, the amount of votes left to surpass Delgado's current 4.5% lead are becoming harder to find.

10:43 PM - Flynn has won Otsego County with 37% of the vote there tonight. Delgado came in second with 15%, Ryan placed third with 12%, and Otsego County native Erin Collier could only manage 10% in her home - she is currently last overall with under 5% of the vote district wide.

10:37 PM - Rhodes is the winner in Sullivan County tonight, as the young candidate has claimed 28% of the vote there while Delgado picked up 18% and Clegg placed third with 17%. Delgado still leads overall with 22%.

10:31 PM - Delgado has carried his home county of Dutchess with 28.22%. Ryan was second with 21.59% and Rhodes was third with 19.16%. Solid result for Delgado, but if he doesn't end up pulling this off - it will be because he didn't perform as strongly as he should have in Dutchess.

10:25 PM - Brian Flynn is absolutely crushing it in Otsego County, carrying about 37% of the vote with 18 of 49 precincts reporting. Rhodes' remains ahead in Delaware while it's a four way battle in Sullivan and Clegg is inching his way back in Ulster. Delgado leads overall with 22%.

10:21 PM - Also we now know the answer to my question of "Is the blue wave actually coming?" With 207 of 458 precincts reporting - or, less than half of the district - more votes have already been counted in tonight's primary than in 2016 total.

10:18 PM - Despite there only being 46 votes tonight in the tiny sliver of Broome County that is in the 19th District, Pat Ryan has won the county with 23.9% of the vote - or, 11 votes total. However, every vote counts with how this night is shaping up currently.

10:14 PM - With 137 of 458 precincts reporting, Delgado is leading the pack with 23.47% of the vote. Ryan is stuck in the 18% range while Rhodes is farther back at just above 15%. Flynn is now leading his home county of Greene with new votes just being reported, while Rhodes is slightly leading in Delaware at the moment.

10:07 PM - I was told today by a voter in Schoharie County that he believed Delgado would win because of the amount of mailers his campaign has been sending out. I can see this playing out, because while other candidates have been to Schoharie County more, I've been receiving mailers from Delgado's camp weekly for months. Also -- with a majority of precincts now reporting from Dutchess and Ulster, Delgado is leading in both.

9:59 PM - Rhodes is leading early in Columbia County, but Delgado is leading everywhere else with the exception of Ulster, which Dave Clegg is currently carrying with 22.25% of the vote with roughly a quarter of the precincts in.

9:53 PM - With 40 of 52 precincts reporting in Greene County, Delgado leads with 24.8% while Flynn and Beals are neck and neck at roughly 18% each.

9:50 PM - Although the New York State Board of Elections website is historically slow, it currently has Delgado barely leading Rhodes with 30 of 458 precincts reporting from across the district (not including Schoharie County, so Delgado is actually in a better position than the site is reporting).

9:42 PM - Early results in Ulster County have Dave Clegg leading the pack with 8 of 79 precincts reporting - although this may all be from his home base of Kingston whilst Delgado is leading heavily with 3 of 36 precincts reporting in Dutchess County.

9:32 PM - With all precincts reporting in Schoharie County, Delgado has carried the rural county by a strong plurality: Delgado - 30.2%; Flynn - 16%; Ryan - 15.9%; Rhodes - 12.3%; Collier - 11.3%; Beals - 8.7%; Clegg - 5.5%.

9:15 PM - It's the Antonio Delgado show early tonight, as the Rhinebeck native is leading Schoharie County with 12 of 16 precincts reporting. Delgado is steady at 31.7% while Flynn has edged into second place and Ryan is barely behind at third.

9:06 PM - With the first results rolling in from Schoharie County (3 of 16 precincts reporting) - Delgado has 30.9%, Ryan has 16.8%, and Flynn has 15.4% thus far.

9:00 PM - Polls are now closed - now the fun begins. Things to watch as the smaller precincts start reporting: how much of the vote is Erin Collier going to receive in Otsego County and will it dent Brian Flynn's early momentum there?

Original Post:

Image originally used by Chronogram Mazagine
Following roughly a year of continuous campaigning, advertising, and retail politics across a congressional district larger than Connecticut and Rhode Island combined, Democratic residents of New York's 19th District are finally choosing their nominee to stand against incumbent Republican John Faso in the fall election to come. 

With all ballots nearly cast and election workers to begin the process of reporting them soon, there are several items to keep an eye on tonight as results start coming in:
  • How will Dutchess County impact the overall race? Polls opened in Dutchess at six this morning, while everyone else in the massive district had to wait until noontime. Dutchess is considered Antonio Delgado's base of support - so how strong his margin there is could tell the story for all of NY-19. 
  • Is the Rhodes wave real? Gareth Rhodes has had a really strong final week of the campaign with the New York Times, several unions, and seemingly a wave of late support arriving at just the right time, but is it too little too late and can the wave outwork Brian Flynn's early base of support in rural NY-19?
  • Is the blue wave actually coming? In 2016 fewer than 20,000 NY-19 Democrats came to select a nominee in the inevitable primary coronation of Zephyr Teachout against Will Yandik while slightly more than 16,000 Republicans participated in the bruising fight between Faso and Andrew Heaney. If the often touted wave is coming, national and local politicos will be able to tell by comparing these primary turnout rates. 

NY-19 Decides: Brian Flynn

Written By Cicero on 6/21/18 | 6/21/18

"Only candidate running with a track record of fighting for progressive causes..." - Brian Flynn.

NY-19 Decides: Brian Flynn
By Timothy Knight

Born in Rochester and raised in New Jersey, NY-19 congressional candidate and lifelong entrepreneur Brian Flynn told the Mountain Eagle in a recent sit down interview that having four Irish grandparents formed his character because he grew up in "basically an American family, but always in the context that we were dirt poor not that long before."

Mr. Flynn, who is a graduate of Georgetown University and who is President of AccuMed, is one of seven Democratic candidates vying to challenge incumbent Republican Congressman John Faso in this fall's general election.

Describing himself as "a genetic Democrat," Mr. Flynn first became involved in political activism when his brother was killed in the Lockerbie bombing in 1988. Saying that, "I was having a great college life...when all of a sudden I got thrown into this world event," Mr. Flynn joined other families in protest and later became Vice-President of the victims organization.

"That experience kind of shaped my desire for activism," said Mr. Flynn, who has gone on to be heavily involved in Democratic politics and activism, including teaching English as a second language to undocumented immigrants, while also building a career in business. 

Although the candidate has only been a resident of Greene County for 15 years - part of which as a second homeowner, with his daughter attending the local Hunter-Tannersville public school, Mr. Flynn has become a full member of the community - a claim that is reinforced by the stream of handshakes, hugs, and "hellos," the candidate received while being interviewed at Maggie's Krooked Cafe.

While Mr. Flynn has campaigned on a myriad of policy positions, he has prominently come out in favor of Medicare for All. Pointing to health care as being the number one employer in most of the counties that make up the expansive district, he believes that his proposal can gain Republican support by making the case it will enable people to pay less while creating jobs.

Noting that there are "clear distinctions" between himself and his Democratic opponents, Mr. Flynn emphasized that he has the "best chance of actually getting something done in Congress" because of his progressive track record and his experience working to get legislation passed in Washington that placed sanctions on Iran and Libya. 

Believing the race to essentially be a dead heat between himself, Antonio Delgado, and Pat Ryan, Mr. Flynn commented "If you care about Medicare for All, then I'm the only one who actually supports it." Furthermore, in addition to his campaign staff being unionized, he is the only union member running and he knocked some of his opponents for never working outside of the government or legal sectors. 

The candidate had little if nothing positive to say about Mr. Faso, knocking the incumbent for trying to take away health care, for being disingenuous about the GOP tax law, for wanting to come after entitlements, and for voting numerous times to reduce environmental protections. 

Saying, "We're going to hold him accountable," Mr. Flynn blasted his potential fall rival as "part of the problem." "It seems like he still lives Nassau County based on how he votes, because it seems like the policies that he supports supports wealthy people in Nassau County and not people living in Schoharie County," added Mr. Flynn. 

When asked why undecided primary voters should pull the lever for him, Mr. Flynn said "I'm the only candidate with a proven track record and experience to beat John Faso." Citing his support for Medicare for All, his business background, and his union membership, Mr. Flynn further stated that his resume makes for a formidable combination, which he calls "the antidote to John Faso."

Democrats will choose their nominee on Tuesday, June 26th. 

Editor's Note: This is the sixth in a series of interviews with the seven candidates vying for the NY-19 Democratic nomination. All seven interviews will appear in the Friday, June 22nd print edition of the Mountain Eagle.

NY-19 Decides: Dave Clegg

Written By Cicero on 6/20/18 | 6/20/18

“I feel my responsibility is to hold the executive branch in check...” - Dave Clegg

NY-19 Decides: Dave Clegg
By Joshua Walther

Dave Clegg has a particular affinity for education, a trait that was first born when he was raised in Staten Island. Seeking a quality education, he traveled two hours both ways to attend school at Brooklyn Tech. He went on to SUNY New Paltz, and SUNY Buffalo to receive his law degree. Upon returning to the Hudson Valley, Mr. Clegg set up his law practice, and has put down many roots in the region.

Mr. Clegg is one of the seven Democratic candidates that hope for the party nomination. While he has never held elected office, he has still acquired much knowledge and experience after his 37 years in the district. He believes that this is what is needed to defeat incumbent Republican Congressman John Faso in the fall.

Mr. Clegg would focus much of his time and energy on passing the Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act. “By passing this legislation, profit motive would be removed from health care system, every person would get quality care, and this would be a far cheaper system then it is now.”

He will also fight as best he can to repeal the tax bill that makes the wealthy wealthier, and use that money for finding environmentally friendly energy sources, stabilize the infrastructure, and bring broadband to rural areas. Mr. Clegg believes that we can “become a national leader in food production.” He will not only work to incentivize small farm growth, but also remove the pollutants that threaten the area.

Mr. Clegg realizes that there is a growing problem with poverty and education, and they go hand in hand. The schools in the area are not being funded well enough, and this leads to students that don’t understand how to keep up with the advancing economy. He feels that both situations need to be resolved, and it is something that can be prevented in the future.

As for gun control, Mr. Clegg is adamant that reform is needed. He referred to “getting guns like AR-15 out of the streets, implementing universal background checks, closing the gun show and internet loophole, and allowing funding to studying this epidemic.” In addition, he mentioned the removal of the liability protection on gun manufacturers, which hold them accountable and motivate them to create firearms with safer technology.

When it comes to running against the other candidates, Mr. Clegg believes that he has done the most work for the community. He has founded the Darmstadt Homeless Shelter, represented many people as a trial attorney, is involved with the United Methodist Church, and teaches ethics classes at Woodbourne Prison, among numerous other engagements with the local population.  

With this in mind, Mr. Clegg feels that he is ready to represent the people of the district, and focus on their needs and desires. “It will take experience, leadership, and someone who has been ingrained in our district.” He believes that he is the one to take on this responsibility, and is confident in his abilities.  

Democrats will choose their nominee on Tuesday, June 26th.  

Editor's Note: This is the fifth in a series of interviews with the seven candidates vying for the NY-19 Democratic nomination. All seven interviews will appear in the Friday, June 22nd print edition of the Mountain Eagle.

NY-19 Decides: Gareth Rhodes

"People are actually looking for experience and looking for someone who knows what they're doing..." - Gareth Rhodes.

NY-19 Decides: Gareth Rhodes
By Timothy Knight 
Born and raised on a farm in Esopus, NY-19 congressional candidate and former Cuomo Administration alum Gareth Rhodes told the Mountain Eagle in a recent sit down interview that he is the most experienced candidate running because, "I'm the only candidate running with government experience here in New York State."

Mr. Rhodes, who is a Political Science major from CUNY City College of New York and who has more government experience than his opponents combined at only age 29, is one of seven Democratic candidates vying to challenge incumbent Republican Congressman John Faso in this fall's general election.

Running on a platform that is often more local than national in nature, Mr. Rhodes has struck a chord of identifying community needs in his campaign: increasing cell phone service, hastening the spread of broadband, developing public transportation, and bringing a maternity ward back to underserved communities. 

This local emphasis is due in part to Mr. Rhodes' folksy tour of all 163 towns in the district - which is bigger than Connecticut and Rhode Island combined - in his 1999 Ford Winnebago, where the candidate met the Mountain Eagle for this story.

Although this technique is not new, as former U.S. Senator Scott Brown is renown for his 2010 campaign in his beat up pickup truck in neighboring Massachusetts, it represents a simpler approach in a race that has become defined by candidates spending large amounts of money on mailers, commercials, and consultants. 

"The majority of my challengers are running very much Washington campaigns, which is raise as much money as you can from out of district donors - very wealthy out of district donors - that is the Washington playbook and it has been tried in NY-19 many, many times; I'm doing completely opposite," commented Mr. Rhodes.

In addition to advocating for the aforementioned local issues, Mr. Rhodes is also campaigning on a very strong environmental message. Citing his childhood in the Catskills, he believes in fighting climate change, fully funding the EPA, and protecting air and water and farm land in Congress. 

From drilling water wells before college to protesting against the Iraq War in his youth and working in Governor Cuomo's office for five years, the candidate has a record of deeply intertwined public advocacy that is motivated by his political science bonafides. Mr. Rhodes, in particular, is passionate about health care after having lost a parent to cancer and is in favor of Medicare for All.

Describing the difference between himself and his potential fall GOP rival as, "Like night and day," Mr. Rhodes dinged the one term representative for not holding public meetings and for not showing up in his district, while saying constituents need someone who will "look voters in the eye" and put the district first.

When asked to make his final case to undecided voters, Mr. Rhodes said "Gareth is the best candidate to beat John Faso and he's the best candidate to serve this community because he has taken the time to listen and the needs of each town are the issues he will fight for in Washington, D.C."

Democrats will choose their nominee on Tuesday, June 26th.

Editor's Note: This is the fourth in a series of interviews with the seven candidates vying for the NY-19 Democratic nomination. All seven interviews will appear in the Friday, June 22nd print edition of the Mountain Eagle.

NY-19 Decides: Antonio Delgado

Written By Cicero on 6/19/18 | 6/19/18

We need representatives who are only beholden to the people, not special interests...” - Antonio Delgado

NY-19 Decides: Antonio Delgado
By Joshua Walther

Antonio Delgado had always felt that “education was the great equalizer”, a reality he experienced while growing up in Schenectady, New York. He was born into a working class family, though he managed to move up through Oxford University and Harvard Law School. After this, he moved to Los Angeles to begin a music company, focusing on hip hop culture and how it can bring people together.  

Ultimately, he returned to New York City to develop his legal skills, and focused on commercial issues and other work, such as cases on identity theft.

Mr. Delgado is one of the seven Democratic candidates attempting to gain the party nomination. He is confident that he can run against incumbent Republican Congressman John Faso in the general election this fall.

Mr. Delgado believes in the power of education, universal health care that’s affordable, and recognizing issues with public safety. He believes that each of these things are given rights, and will work hard to remedy these perceived problems.

While in office, Mr. Delgado also hopes to make amends to infrastructure, the criminal justice system, and protecting the environment.

Mr. Delgado ensures that he differs from his competition due to his willingness to meet with all people, no matter their political background or ideals, and said “I have a profound belief that people have trouble turning their backs on love and genuineness.”

The candidate also boasted his Diner Tour, in which he traveled across the district, stopping at local diners in towns such as Saugerties or Cobleskill, to meet with residents that were still undecided in their vote. His team also collected 6,000 petition signatures, which is more than any other Democratic candidate running against him.

At these Diner Tour stops, a topic of contention is gun control. While Mr. Delgado recognizes that responsible gun ownership is protected under the Second Amendment, he supports reforms such as banning bump stocks, which were used in the Las Vegas shooting, and prohibiting the sale of firearms to domestic abusers. Not only this, but it will be a priority to “keep weapons of war out of our neighborhoods, churches, theaters and schools.”

Mr. Delgado also called out John Faso on taking thousands of dollars from the National Rifle Association, and staying silent on topics that he felt needed to be addressed. “I won’t take a cent of their money,” he said, and promised to do his best to deliver on his word.

“We are uniquely equipped to defeat Faso in November by out-working him and out-organizing him,” Mr. Delgado closed with. He believes in both sides of the community, even those who would not normally vote in his favor. “He is going to be tough, but we have the resources to do it.”

Democrats will choose their nominee on Tuesday, June 26th.

Editor's Note: This is the third in a series of interviews with the seven candidates vying for the NY-19 Democratic nomination. All seven interviews will appear in the Friday, June 22nd print edition of the Mountain Eagle.

NY-19 Decides: Erin Collier

Written By Cicero on 6/18/18 | 6/18/18

"I'm an economist: I know what good economic policy looks like that benefits everyone and not just the elites..." - Erin Collier

NY-19 Decides: Erin Collier
By Timothy Knight

Born and raised in Cooperstown, NY-19 congressional candidate and agricultural economist Erin Collier told the Mountain Eagle in a recent phone conversation that due to her experience growing up poor on the family farm, "I know what it's like to go without."

Ms. Collier, who is a graduate of Cornell University and who worked in the Obama Administration as an ag economist, is one of seven Democratic candidates vying for the party's nomination to challenge incumbent Republican Congressman John Faso in this fall's general election.

Finding the Republican Party's approach to income inequality hard to watch, Ms. Collier stated she "felt very strongly about doing something about it."

In particular, the eighth generation native of Otsego County cited the GOP's lack of support for farmers in the recently failed Farm Bill to be troubling. "Thank goodness the farm bill did not pass," said the candidate.

"Ag has long been an important part of our district and it's really struggling right now," cautioned Ms. Collier before adding that, "If we don't do something about it right now, we're going to lose our ag sector."

Putting herself through college by waitressing, Ms. Collier has an unquestionable working class pedigree stemming back to her starting work at only 14 years old, which is why she believes "I understand the challenges we face everyday."

With her family having roots extending back to the seventeen hundreds in the area - one has to look no further than the community of Colliersville for the deepness of said roots - Ms. Collier believes that her connection to the district and her status as an economist makes her unique from the six other candidates running.

"We absolutely must have a progressive economist in Congress," said Ms. Collier. She would go on to add that she is the only candidate with federal policy experience.

Another unique feature of her candidacy is that not only is she the only woman running in a field of seven candidates, but that she launched her campaign only this March - months, if not a whole year after the other contenders - which she said speaks to the financially prohibitive nature of elections.

"If I had $500,000 of my money, I would have been in this race long ago," said Ms. Collier. Further commenting upon the difficulties of her campaign she said, "The harder I felt it was, the more determined I was to get into this race."

When asked what differentiates herself from Mr. Faso, Ms. Collier replied "everything" with a slight laugh. Touching on his opposition to Obamacare, his vote for the farm bill, his opposition to the Paycheck Fairness Act, and the support for him from the National Rifle Association, there was little wiggle room to misinterpret her opposition to her potential opponent's positions.

"This is my home and I come from a working class background," said the candidate when asked why undecided voters should support her. "I care about people [and] I will do the right thing," she added before concluding, "I will always fight for District 19."

Democrats will choose their nominee on Tuesday, June 26th.

Editor's Note: This is the second on a series of interviews with the seven candidates vying for the NY-19 Democratic nomination. All seven interviews will appear in the Friday, June 22nd print edition of the Mountain Eagle.

NY-19 Decides: Pat Ryan

Written By Cicero on 6/13/18 | 6/13/18

"I feel like our country is no longer the country I was ready to put my life on the line for..." - Pat Ryan

NY-19 Decides: Pat Ryan
By Timothy Knight 

Born and raised in Kingston, NY-19 congressional candidate and Iraq War Veteran Pat Ryan told the Mountain Eagle in a recent phone conversation that his mom and grandfather taught him at a young age that, "We all have this responsibility as citizens to participate and give back." 

Mr. Ryan, who is a graduate of West Point and who served two combat deployments in Iraq, is one of seven Democratic candidates vying for the party's nomination to challenge incumbent Republican Congressman John Faso in this fall's general election. 

Wanting to fix the problem he saw first hand in combat, Mr. Ryan started a small business after leaving the military to bring better equipment - namely, body armor - to troops overseas. His small business soon grew to over 150 employees and during this time he earned his Master's in Foreign Policy from Georgetown University.

Explaining that, "I saw how difficult and terrible war is," Mr. Ryan stressed that it should be a last resort that comes after diplomacy and trade craft. Adding that he had to lead young men and women in combat that had to transcend their differences, Mr. Ryan believes that a similar approach is needed in governing. 

The fifth generation Ulster County native believes he differs from his six opponents in that he can beat Mr. Faso due to his ties to the district and his record of service. "People want folks in Congress who have actually shown the willingness to put something greater than themselves first," said Mr. Ryan. 

Pointing to a poll published in April from the Democratic aligned Public Policy Polling firm that shows him narrowly beating his potential general election rival, Mr. Ryan expressed confidence in his ability to win the primary after his team has knocked on over 40,000 doors across the district since he announced.

One of Mr. Ryan's more focal positions has been his stance in support of gun control. Advocating for reinstating the federal assault weapons ban, stronger background checks, and closing the gun show loophole, the candidate stated that he thinks it is reprehensible and unacceptable that schools are starting to feel like a war zone.

Knocking Mr. Faso for being in the pocket of the gun lobby, Mr. Ryan said that supporting stricter gun control measures requires "The moral courage to stand up and take this position."

The candidate further knocked his potential opponent for not showing up in the district and expressed outrage that he wont hold a public forum. "He's about himself and he's about getting big donors taken care of," Mr. Ryan said.

When asked to make his case to undecided voters in one sentence, Mr. Ryan simply said "We need a Congressman who you can trust to have our back on every issue." He then added after a brief pause that this community had his back when he was deployed overseas and that, "We need a candidate who can win against Faso."

Democrats will choose their nominee on Tuesday, June 26th. 

Editor's Note: This is the first in a series of interviews with the seven candidates vying for the NY-19 Democratic nomination. All seven interviews will appear in the Friday, June 22nd print edition of the Mountain Eagle.

NY-19 Dems Schmooze Schoharie Dems at FDR Spring Fling

Written By Cicero on 6/11/18 | 6/11/18

Gareth Rhodes speaks with Fulton Supervisor
Phil Skowfoe about drilling water wells.
Story & photos by Timothy Knight

SCHOHARIE - With only weeks remaining until Democrat voters across New York's 19th congressional district choose their nominee to challenge incumbent Republican Congressman John Faso in November, four of the seven candidates vying for the nomination wooed the local party faithful at this past weekend's FDR Spring Fling event in Schoharie. 

Working the roomful of Democratic committee members, elected officials, and party supporters from within Schoharie County, candidates Brian Flynn, Erin Collier, Gareth Rhodes, and Antonio Delgado continued this primary's theme of intensive retail politics to sway every voter possible in what could be a race decided by a couple of percentage points.

Brian Flynn makes a joke about him and
Assembly candidate Aidan O'Connor while
Conversations ranged from Mr. Delgado's past as a basketball star at Colgate to Mr. Rhodes' time spent as a well driller before college as the candidates maneuvered from table to table. Despite some attendees already favoring one candidate or the other, all contenders were given an open hearing as they jockeyed for support only 18 days before voters decide. 

Afforded an opportunity to each address the assembled crowd, all four candidates present tried to make the case for why they were the best choice to challenge Mr. Faso in the fall, with each candidate touching on their unique connections to the district and how their particular brand of experience would result in turning NY-19 blue in November.

Stressing that he is, "The only candidate who has created hundreds of good paying jobs," Mr. Flynn talked about creating a "plan for the American worker." A resident of the Hunter-Tannersville School District, where his daughter attends class, Mr. Flynn emphasized his bonafides by quipping "I come to you as a lifelong progressive Democrat."
Erin Collier touched on a lot of personal notes
during her speech, including her family's role as
the namesakes of Colliersville in Otsego County.

Ms. Collier, who was the last of the seven candidates to enter the congressional race, and the only woman running for the nomination, touched on her family's long roots in Cooperstown as residents and farmers. An ag economist who worked in the Obama Administration, Ms. Collier dinged national Republicans for not helping struggling farmers enough before urging the crowd that, "We need to do better."

Believing that, "We can't afford to lose this seat," Mr. Rhodes implored the room to take a look at recent Democratic defeats in the district and suggested that a new tactic was necessary to compete, which he touted with his own campaign tour to visit Democrats in all 163 towns that make up NY-19. A former Cuomo alum, Mr. Rhodes stated "[I'm] the only candidate in this district with local union endorsement."

Antonio Delgado makes a point about income
inequality while stumping for support Friday.
Mr. Delgado, who had previously attended and spoken to Schoharie Democrats at last year's FDR Dinner, rounded out the quartet of speeches with an impassioned appeal to restore the dream of obtaining upward mobility in America, much like he had been able to growing up as the son of GE employees who ended up attending Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar.

Although a representative of Jeff Beals did speak to the crowd, neither Mr. Beals nor his opponents Dave Clegg and Pat Ryan attended the annual Democrat shin dig hosted by the Schoharie County Democratic Committee at the Quality Inn Schoharie.

Democrats will head to the polls to select their nominee on Tuesday, June 26th.

Editor's Note - In the coming weeks, The Mountain Eagle will be featuring interviews with all seven candidates running to challenge Congressman Faso in the fall. 

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