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New Gillibrand challenger emerges
February 29, 2012 - Chris Morris
Nassau County Comptroller George Maragos is no longer the sole challenger to U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., in the upcoming election.
Maragos became the lone Republican challenger several weeks ago after Marc Cenedella dropped out. Now, Wendy Long, a lawyer from New York City, is kicking off her campaign with a tour of upstate New York:
"I want to hear firsthand about local priorities and get a clear understanding of the challenges facing families upstate from the people who are experiencing it," she said in a press release. "But it's not enough to simply listen, our elected officials have to lead and I intend to share my vision of how we can restore the federal government to its proper constitutional role as our servant - defending our country, protecting our freedoms, keeping its commitments, and paying its bills.
"This country is heading toward a debt crisis. America's credit has been downgraded, and it could happen again. Jobs, capital and most importantly our young people have been leaving upstate because of economic policies that are hostile to free enterprise."
Long, a self-described conservative Republican, said Gillibrand belongs to Washington's political elite, and is responsible for "running up" the nation's tab and "handing down their orders, expecting citizens, businesses and religious institutions to simply fall in line and obey." Meanwhile, it didn't take, ahem, long for Long to pick up her first endorsement. In a press release issued Tuesday, she announced that Onondaga County Republican Chairman Thomas V. Dadey Jr. is backing her candidacy.
"In less than two years Senator Gillibrand has forgotten her upstate roots with a liberal makeover taking her from Annie Oakley to Jane Fonda," Dadey said. "As a Senator she has failed to pass a budget or a single jobs bill and refuses to fight for New York's hard-working middle-class taxpayers who are drowning in high taxes and skyrocketing debt. That's inexcusable."
Dadey said he's prepared to work hard to secure the GOP line for Long when the state Republican Party meets in Rochester on March 16.
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