Throughout the big 26th District congressional race between challenger Chris Collins and incumbent Kathleen C. Hochul, one big question loomed over the advertising effort: Would national Democrats sponsor critical TV ads like their GOP counterparts?
Now the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's independent expenditure arm has answered by buying $260,000 worth of television ads in Rochester for Hochul, according to a report in Roll Call.
The purchase brings the total spent by outside groups in the district to more than $3 million, with the majority for Collins.
Add fracking to the list of hot-button issues that are occupying candidates in the 60th Senate district race this campaign season.
Mike Amodeo, the Lake View resident who is running against incumbent Republican Mark J. Grisanti for the 60th district seat, this week released a statement criticizing Grisanti for being endorsed by the pro-hydrofracking group Unshackle Upstate.
The Rochester-based group’s policies and agenda are not in the best interests of Western New York residents – many of whom oppose fracking – and Grisanti should distance himself from them, Amodeo charged.
Democrat Amodeo, in his criticism, called Grisanti “one of the biggest pro-hydrofracking Senators in the state.”
Grisanti’s office said the Senator’s position on fracking is this:
Grisanti is awaiting the results of a public-comment period that was recently held by the Department of Environmental Conservation, which gathered some 80,000 comments on the issue.
And, Grisanti also said that he presses for protections for upstate residents wherever possible in environmental matters.
A group linked to Citizen Action of New York staged demonstrations across the state Thursday in favor of preserving Social Security and Medicare -- including near the campaign headquarters of Republican congressional candidate Chris Collins.
Restore the American Promise planned to demonstrate at the Lancaster headquarters of the candidate, who subscribes to Republican plans to restructure Medicare. The group said it planned to "demand that these programs be protected."
The group's website makes the following claim:
"For the past three decades, Washington politicians and their benefactors have broken their promises, and have turned the American Dream into the American Nightmare. First, they froze our wages. Then they took away our guaranteed pensions. Then they took away our jobs and looted our savings. Now they’re coming for our Medicare, our Medicaid, our Social Security, all to pay for more tax cuts for the rich and sweetheart deals for big corporations. Soon there will be nothing left for us."
ALBANY – What does it say about a campaign that spent $12.50 at a pizza restaurant to feed volunteers?
Either the volunteers weren’t all that hungry, or there weren’t many of them.
So goes the money ways for Democrat Mike Amodeo, whose fundraising and expenditure report for his 60th Senate district campaign has now shown up on the web site of the state elections board.
The latest round of fundraising reports for his opponents, including incumbent Sen. Mark Grisanti, a Republican, all were posted on the state board’s web site last Friday.
A look this morning at Amodeo’s submission shows money woes. Besides the fact that the central Senate Democratic campaign committee appears to be writing off his campaign with no vows of financial support yet -- while Senate Republicans donated at least $200,000 the past several weeks to Grisanti’s effort -- the Hamburg lawyer raised only $11,900 in the past several weeks.
Mike Amodeo, the Democratic challenger to incumbent Republican Mark Grisanti in the 60th Senate district, is drawing attention this week to the status of a measure that would further boost the efforts of historic rehabilitators and preservationists across the state.
Amodeo has sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos, asking for quick action on a measure known as the Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit, or HRTC. The measure would lift the maximum dollar figure on the tax credit available to developers and rehabbers from $5 million to $12 million. The measure builds on legislation that was approved several years ago.
Amodeo urged Skelos to send the measure – which was sponsored by Grisanti earlier this year – to the governor for a signature, arguing that it is holding up the creation of new jobs in Western New York.
"I am imploring you on behalf of the residents of Buffalo and the 60th Senate District to advance this historic rehabilitation tax credit bill immediately,” stated Amodeo, a Hamburg attorney, in his letter, “so economic development can continue and prevailing wage jobs can be restored to Buffalo.”
A spokesman for Senate Republicans contradicted the notion that the GOP is in any way holding up the measure.
"Not only does Mike Amodeo oppose the Governor's property tax cap, but he has no understanding of how the legislative process actually works," the spokesman, Scott Reif, said in an email to The Buffalo News. "The Legislature works with the Governor's office to ensure that their counsel has adequate time to review each of the hundreds of bills that are passed every year, and they simply haven't requested this bill yet."
Notes from Erie County’s political trail – this time, from the meeting inside the Hearthstone Manor on Saturday, at which Jeremy Zellner was elected the Dems' new county chairman (the vote is now being challenged in court by Frank Max, his opponent) – include some funny moments, too.
The top three humorous moments from Saturday’s 4-hour-long conclave of local Dems?
It’s wholly unofficial, of course. But here are the picks of one observer:
1.) At the beginning of the lengthy session, at which more than 1,000 Democratic committee men and women packed into a ballroom at the Depew banquet facility, paper ballots were distributed.
To use the ballots as anonymous votes, the papers had to be separated into two parts.
“There are SCISSORS up here,” one party official told the multitude. “They are NOT meant to be used as weapons.”
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.
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.
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.