Dutchess County heating oil exec files to run for NY-19

A Dutchess County heating oil executive has throw his hat in the ring to run as a Republican for New York’s 19th Congressional District.

Andrew Heaney filed his statement of candidacy this month with the Federal Election Commission.

Rep. Chris Gibson, a retired Army colonel, has said he won’t seek a fourth term in Congress next year. The Republican has said he’s seriously interested in running for governor but won’t make a final decision until after he finished his term next year.

On his campaign website Heaney says he lives with his wife ans three children in the Town of Washington. He says he grew up working at the family business, a heating oil company in College Point, New York, answering phones, installing boilers, doing sales and eventually driving a heating oil truck.

Heaney says at 22 he became the president of Heating Energy Affordable Today, or HEAT, which was a “heating cooperative” and small division of his family’s business. He says he grew the company “into the largest heating oil buying group in the United States” representing “tens of thousands of heating oil users in 11 states.”

He also says “he’s been an active voice representing the interests of residential heating oil and propane consumers in the media, Albany and Washington, D.C.”

According to FEC records Heaney has contributed more than $40,000 to mostly Republican campaign causes since 1999, listing his employer alternatively as Heaney Energy Corp., HEAT USA or Submarine Rock. Recipients include former President George W. Bush, Sen. John McCain, former New York City mayor Rudolph Giuliani and even $2,300 to President Barack Obama, a Democrat, back in 2007.

Heaney seems to have some powerful family connections. According to a New York Times wedding announcement, Heaney married Leslie Bathgate in 2000. Bathgate’s father, attorney Lawrence E. Bathgate II, was the finance chairman of the Republican National Committee under President George H. W. Bush from 1987 to 2002, according to the announcement. The New Jersey attorney is also a supporter and organizer for presidential candidate Jeb Bush, according to the Washington Post.

Heaney joins a growing field of candidates.

John J. Faso has formed an exploratory committee to potentially run for the seat as well. The Kinderhook Republican was the minority leader of the state Assembly from 1998-2002 and the endorsed Republican gubernatorial nominee against Eliot Spitzer in 2006. Spitzer won by a landslide.

John Patrick Kehoe, a 29-year-old Rochester Democrat, filed his statement of candidacy with the Federal Election Commission on July 2, making his the first to officially declare. Though Rochester isn’t in the 19th Congressional District, Kehoe also says he’s from Woodstock.

Assemblyman Pete Lopez and Sen. Jim Seward, both state Republicans, have also both said they’re interested in running, though neither has filed any paperwork.

In November Gibson won a decisive victory against wealthy venture capitalist Sean Eldridge, D-Shokan, despite being outspent. He took all 11 counties, including Ulster and Sullivan, and won 131,594 to 72,470.


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