Maloney leads Hayworth by 5 points in Siena poll

Poll results released tonight by Siena College show Democratic Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney leading his Republican predecessor and challenger, Nan Hayworth, by 5 percentage points in the final days of their rematch race for New York’s 18th Congressional District.

The phone survey of 682 likely voters was done Oct. 24-27 and had a margin of error of 3.8 points. Maloney’s slender edge was slightly narrower than the 8-point advantage he held in a Siena poll conducted more than a month earlier.

Weeks of caustic ads and mailings attacking Maloney have driven up his unfavorability rating to 41 percent from 31 percent in September, although the 47 percent of poll respondents who had a favorabile view of him was still higher than Hayworth’s 44 percent.

Maloney held a strong lead of 12 percentage points over Hayworth in Orange County, which accounts for about half the district’s electorate, and was ahead by five points in Dutchess, while Hayworth led by nine points in Putnam and Westchester counties.

Siena pollster Steven Greenberg said the keys to the outcome on Tuesday in such a close race will be turnout and which party does a better job getting its voters to the polls — factors that favor Republicans in nonpresidential voting years.


The poll excluded Scott Smith, the Goshen resident who has mounted an independent campaign for the 18th District.

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Smith touts his independent bid for Congress

Scott Smith, the Goshen resident mounting an independent campaign for New York’s 18th Congressional District seat, has released a video of the press-less press conference he held on Tuesday outside the Orange County Government Center in Goshen to draw attention to his largely overlooked part in the race.

Smith, a former Middletown city alderman with no political affiliation, vented frustration with his exclusion from all debates between Democratic Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney and Republican challenger Nan Hayworth, and even from opinion polls conducted for the race. He noted his having to overcome what he described as a baseless petition challenge to even get in the race, which required him to spend his own money on a court case.

If the video, Smith says, “If those in the business of elections and my two opponents can be so dismissive of me, I ask everyone to consider how little regard they must have for us all, except on Election Day of course. A large majority of us believe that our country is in trouble, and our two major parties are doing more harm than good.

More information about Smith is available on his website: www.sendmrsmith2014.com

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GOP House members will rally for Hayworth in Chester

Five Republican House members —  including the leaders of their conference’s campaign arm — are scheduled to attend a get-out-the-vote rally in Chester tomorrow for their former colleague, Nan Hayworth, who’s trying on Tuesday to win back the 18th Congressional District seat she lost to Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney two years ago.

The event will take place at 2 p.m. at Hayworth’s campaign headquarters on Brookside Avenue. The headliners are Reps. Greg Walden and Lynn Westmoreland, chairman and deputy chairman respectively of the National Republican Campaign Committee. Chris Collins, a Buffalo-area congressman, is also listed as part of the rally crew on the invitation.

 

 

 

 

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Siena/TWC poll: In home stretch, Gibson leads Eldridge by 23 points

KINGSTON — With a week left until election, GOP Rep. Chris Gibson is leading Democratic challenger Sean Eldridge by 23 points, according to a poll by Time Warner Cable News and Siena College.

Gibson, from Kinderhook, holds a 58-35 percent lead in the 19th Congressional District, virtually unchanged from his 57-33 percentage lead seven weeks ago, according to a press release from Siena.

“Gibson heads into the final week of the campaign largely unscathed and with a commanding 23-point lead over Eldridge,” said Siena College spokesman Steven Greenberg. “Over the last seven weeks, the Eldridge campaign has gained little or no traction with practically any constituency.

The poll was conducted from Oct. 22-24 via telephone to 727 likely voters, drawn from a list of registered voters. Siena says. It has a margin of error of 3.6 percentage points.

Greenberg goes on:

“Gibson has overwhelming support from 86 percent of Republicans, strong support from 60 percent of independents, and even has the support of more than one-quarter of Democrats, all virtually the same as the previous Time Warner Cable News/Siena poll,” Greenberg said. “He maintains a 13-point lead in the Ulster/Dutchess portion of the district and better than two-to-one leads in the other regions. He has a dominating 42-point lead with men and leads among women by nine points. He leads by more than 20 points with voters 55 and older and has an even larger lead with voters younger than 55,” Greenberg said.

“As mailboxes across the 19th C.D. have been stuffed with literature promoting and attacking each candidate, and as airways have been flooded with both warm and fuzzy commercials and attack ads, Eldridge has become known to more voters. Unfortunately for him, there are as many voters that view him unfavorably as view him favorably,” Greenberg said. “Gibson, who was well known throughout the district at the beginning of the campaign, continues to hold a better than two-to-one favorability rating.

“While Eldridge is viewed strongly favorably by Democrats and strongly unfavorably by Republicans, Gibson is viewed overwhelmingly favorably by Republicans and independents, even as Democrats are closely divided on their view of Gibson,” Greenberg said.

In an interview, Eldridge said pointed to a recent poll his campaign released by Global Strategy Group conducted October 16 through October 19. That poll had voters split 46 percent Gibson, 36 percent Eldridge, cutting Gibson’s lead in half from a previous poll conducted three weeks earlier.

Still, he admitted Gibson has put up a “formidable campaign.”

“Look, there’s no question it’s a challenging climate. It’s a challenging race. But I took it on because I really think we got to do better than the least productive Congress in the history of our country,” Eldridge said. 

 Here’s a link to the crosstabs for all you wonks out there.

 

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Amedore outspends Tkaczyk

Eleven days before election George Amedore, GOP contender for the state’s 46th Senate District, spent a whopping $735,407.52, topping Democratic Sen. Cecilia Tkaczyk’s $474,790.34, according to the state Board of Elections.

The 11-day pre-general report shows that Amedore’s campaign raised $708,192.33 while Tkaczyk’s campaign took in $411,784.23.

Notable contributions to Tkaczyk include George Soros and his son Robert Soros, who each pitched in $10,300, $3,250 from singer Natalie Merchant, $6,000 from Leonard Riggio, founder of Barnes & Noble and $2,500 from New York City real estate developer Francis Greenburger.

Tkaczyk’s campaign also took in thousands from union, LLCs, special interest PACs and the campaigns of several high-ranking Democratic senatorial leaders.

Ulster County’s Democratic Committee also threw in $60,000 to her campaign while the New York State Democratic Senate Campaign Committee threw in $225,000.

As far as spending, Tkaczyk’s campaign gave $68,797 to Minneapolis-based canvassing company, GRSC Consulting LLC, and $380,000 to various firms across the country for television advertisements.

Tkaczyk also gave herself a $75 in-kind contribution of wool. The senator raises sheep and has made their fleece into wool.

Meanwhile, Amedore’s campaign took in thousands from PACs and LLCs associated with real estate, in New York City, correction officers, contractors, the NRA, and firefighters. It also took in cash from a high-ranking senate Republican. All told, those contributions added to about $94,000.

Amedore’s campaign spent $601,276 on television advertisements to two companies and about $86,000 on radio spots. The New York State Senate Republican Campaign Committee threw $597,000 to Amedore’s campaign.

 

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Hayworth pumps $1 million into her campaign

Republican Nan Hayworth this week sank $1 million of her own money into her bid to win back New York’s 18th Congressional District seat, erasing a funding gap as her rematch race against Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney enters the homestretch.

Federal Election Commission campaign filings show the Westchester County eye doctor already had loaned or given her campaign around $700,000 since the last election, and made her latest, jumbo investment on Tuesday. She had reported having almost $430,000 in her account as of Oct. 15, after raising $90,000 and spending almost $500,000 in the previous two weeks.

Maloney, a Cold Spring Democrat, had almost $900,000 on hand, or twice as much money as his challenger, on Oct. 15, according to FEC records. He had raised about $220,000 and spent about $480,000 in the first two weeks of the month.

Spending by national parties and outside organizations on ads and mailings for the race has surpassed $2 million. The biggest spenders thus far, according to campaign filings compiled by the website opensecrets.org, are the House Majority PAC and Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which have spent a combined $1.5 million on Maloney’s behalf.

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Maloney camp rips Hayworth’s “paycheck fairness” dodge

One piece of this week’s debate between Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney and Republican challenger Nan Hayworth that didn’t make it into the Times Herald-Record coverage but provided campaign fodder for Maloney’s side was a discussion about the Paycheck Fairness Act, a Democratic initiative blocked in Congress by Republican opposition for several years.

The bill is intended to close the earnings gap between women and men by strengthening protections against gender-based wage discrimination that supporters blame for men being paid more than female peers. The bill would update the Equal Pay Act — a 1963 law making it illegal to pay women less than men for the same work — by tightening the discrimination standard and making employers subject to lawsuits if they break the law, among other steps. Opponents have challenged the wage-disparity data supporters have cited and questioned the effectiveness of the proposed remedies.

When asked by the Times Herald-Record for her position on the bill, Hayworth said she supported “equal pay for equal work,” but when pressed by Executive Editor Barry Lewis she repeatedly resisted answering if she was for or against the Paycheck Fairness Act specifically. Instead, she tried connecting the issue of women’s wages to her critique of Democratic economic policies, which she believes have stifled growth.

“It completely misses the point if you don’t have jobs to go to in the first place,” she said.

Maloney’s campaign tweaked the former congresswoman the next day for refusing “six times” to provide a direct answer, linking to a video segment with Hayworth’s somewhat rambling response in its press release. “This is hard to believe it’s so crazy — first Tea Party Congresswoman Hayworth defunded Planned Parenthood and now won’t support the simple concept of equal pay for equal work,” campaign spokeswoman Stephanie Formas said.

The House of Representatives passed the Paycheck Fairness Act when Democrats controlled the House in 2009, but Senate Republicans blocked it the next year, and it has never advanced since being re-introduced. Republicans most recently prevented a vote on the bill in the Democratic-controlled Senate in September, as Democrats pressed the issue as part of their campaign message this season. The House bill, going nowhere in that Republican-led chamber, currently has 208 co-sponsors, all of them Democrats except one. The lone Republican is Chris Gibson of New York’s 19th District, who signed on as a co-sponsor on Sept. 16, the day after the Senate bill fizzled.

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At least it wasn’t the Sapient line

Supporters of independent congressional candidate Scott Smith and United Monroe’s Assembly and Town Board candidates will have to squint hard to find their candidates’ party names on the Nov. 4 ballot.

That’s because all three office seekers were placed on the Women’s Equality Party ballot line that Gov. Andrew Cuomo created for his re-election campaign. Further to the right in that row are the boxes for Smith, Assembly candidate Dan Castricone and Town Board candidate Dennis McWatters, with the words “Send Mr. Smith” and “United Monroe” in tiny letters in the upper left corners of the boxes. Smith is running in the 18th Congressional District race with Democratic Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney and Republican challenger Nan Hayworth.

Orange County elections commissioner Sue Bahren explains that those independent candidates didn’t get their own rows because the number of parties for the gubernatorial race had already exceeded the limit of nine rows, forcing the county to combine two (Stop Common Core and Libertarian) on one line and insert Smith and the United Monroe candidates on the first available independent line.

That meant Women’s Equality. Above that were the six parties with guaranteed places on New York’s ballot. Below that were three others parties with candidates for governor, including the Sapient Party, whose standard bearer is Steven Cohen and whose name means “having great wisdom.”

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Hillary Clinton will campaign for Maloney

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will lend her star power to Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney’s re-election campaign by appearing at a “Women for Maloney” rally on Monday in Somers, a northern Westchester County town about 20 minutes north of Hillary and Bill Clinton’s home in Chappaqua.

Maloney’s campaign announced this morning that the event will be free and open to any members of the public who grab tickets, distributed at five campaign offices on a first-come basis. The rally will take place at the Pinnacle at Heritage Hills country club, with doors opening at 10:30 a.m.

Maloney said in the release:

“For more than two decades, I’ve seen Hillary in action fighting for middle class families, so I look forward to Hillary joining me to discuss our plans to grow our economy and create jobs. Hillary’s led the way breaking down barriers for women and young girls, but our fight isn’t over against the Tea Party crowd who want to destroy opportunities for women by defunding Planned Parenthood, privatizing Social Security and opposing equal pay for equal work.”

Maloney worked as an aide in the (Bill) Clinton White House and got a boost from his former boss during his first congressional run two years ago. The former president appeared at a rally and fundraiser for Maloney and recorded a robocall on his behalf that circulated shortly before the election.

Tickets for the rally may be claimed at Maloney’s campaign offices on Friday and Saturday. Locations include 320 Front St. in Newburgh and 6 West St. in Middletown.

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Outside group pledges $600,000 for anti-Maloney ads (updated)

A conservative group called the American Action Network announced Friday that it plans to spend $600,000 on mailings, internet ads and TV commercials opposing “liberal Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney,” who’s running for a second term in one of 20 House of Representatives races on which American Action Network and an affiliate vow to invest $19 million altogether.

“Sean Patrick Maloney thinks his constituents should have to live by one set of rules and he should get to live by another,” Emily Davis, a spokeswoman for the group, said in a press release that repeated the campaign themes of Maloney’s opponent, former Rep. Nan Hayworth. “From voting to have first class air travel for Members of Congress to violating a ban by the very entity he oversees in Congress, Sean Patrick Maloney has proven he doesn’t deserve the trust of Hudson Valley families.”

The spending will go largely toward “heavy mail and digital advertising,” with some for TV ads in late October, the release said.

According to the Opensecrets.org website, outside organizations have spent $1.5 million so far this year on New York’s 18th Congressional District race, with the Democrats’ House Majority PAC leading the way with $714,000, followed by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee ($372,000) and pro-Hayworth U.S. Chamber of Commerce ($301,000).

Update: Maloney campaign spokeswoman Stephanie Formas issued the following statement in response to the American Action Network’s announcement:  ”This Wall Street funded Super PAC and Tea Party Congresswoman Nan Hayworth are two peas in a pod — they support privatizing Social Security and giving more tax breaks to multimillionaires like themselves. Congresswoman Hayworth’s Wall Street friends want her back in Congress so she can pass her plan to let them gamble senior’s retirement on Wall Street.”

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