Potential Dem challenger for Bonacic opens campaign committee

Rosendale Councilwoman Jen Metzger announced Thursday that she may challenge Republican Sen. John Bonacic for the Senate seat he has held for the last 19 years.

Metzger, a Democrat elected to a second term on the Rosendale Town Board in November, created a campaign committee to run for the 42nd Senate District on Wednesday, and said in her press release that she’ll make a formal announcement about her candidacy in March. She said she’s a 53-year-old mother of three who has lived in Rosendale for 17 years, has a PhD in political science from Rutgers University in New Jersey, and is director of the nonprofit Citizens for Local Power.

“The State Senate is not supposed to be a lifelong occupation,” Metzger said. “We need people in office with a fresh perspective, an understanding of our communities’ needs, and the energy and principled commitment it takes to meaningfully improve the quality of life of the people in our district.”

The 42nd District takes in parts of Orange, Ulster and Delaware counties and all of Sullivan. Bonacic, 75, who lives in Mount Hope and is a former Orange County legislator and state assemblyman, has had no opponent or won by huge margins in every Senate election since his first in 1998. He has almost $720,00 in his campaign account, the most by far of any of the 10 state lawmakers representing Orange, Ulster and Sullivan counties.

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