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Rodriguez plans independent, Conservative candidacies

   By Robert J. McCarthy

   Republican mayoral hopeful Sergio R. Rodriguez knows it's awfully tough to win on the GOP line in overwhelmingly Democratic Buffalo.
   That's why he's grasping for every advantage he can get - including an independent line he plans to pursue when petitions for non-established parties are due in August.
   Rodriguez says he will circulate petitions for a Progressive party, to allow those Buffalo voters unwilling to vote GOP a chance to vote for him. He also said he will circulate petitions to compete as a write-in candidate in the Conservative primary, claiming he needs only 63 signatures from city Conservatives to qualify.
   Though incumbent Byron W. Brown once again has been endorsed by Conservative leaders, Rodriguez realizes Brown can be challenged on the line. Republican Kevin J. Helfer, a former Conservative, qualified as a write-in candidate in 2005 and beat Brown in the minor party primary.
   None of this, however, is sitting well with Erie County Conservative Chairman Ralph C. Lorigo, a strong Brown backer. The chairman said he likes Rodriguez, but the effort will not help his relationship with the often influential minor party.
   "That could potentially destroy a relationship that can be built in the future," he said. "It would be difficult to fight, but we would."

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About Politics Now

Robert J. McCarthy

Robert J. McCarthy

A native of Schenectady, Robert J. McCarthy came to The Buffalo News in 1982 following a six-year stint at the Olean Times Herald. He is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University, and has been covering local, state and national politics since 1992.

[email protected]


Tom Precious

Tom Precious

Tom Precious joined The Buffalo News in 1997 as bureau chief at the state Capitol, where he covers everything from statewide politics and state government fiscal affairs to health care, environmental and municipal government matters. Prior to The News, he worked for news outlets in Albany and Washington, DC.

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Jill Terreri

Jill Terreri

Jill Terreri is an Amherst native and has covered politics and government in upstate New York since 2003. She joined The Buffalo News in 2012 and covers City Hall.

@jillterreri | [email protected]


Jerry Zremski

Jerry Zremski

Jerry Zremski, The Buffalo News Washington bureau chief, has reported from the nation's capital since 1989 after joining The News as a business reporter in 1984. A graduate of Syracuse University, Zremski is a former Nieman fellow in journalism at Harvard University. In 2007, he served as president of the National Press Club.

@JerryZremski | [email protected]

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