Seward blasts Dem legislative sprint in January

Sen. James Seward teed off this week on Democratic lawmakers for the surge of legislation they passed in their first month with two-chamber majorities, saying their election reforms, abortion-rights and gun-control laws and other actions will do “precious little” to “make the everyday lives of real people any better.”

Seward, an Otsego County Republican who has been in the Senate for 32 years and whose district includes part of Ulster County, accused Democrats of “making grandiose speeches and appeasing special interest groups,” while neglecting “affordability and upstate jobs.” He vented about the DREAM Act, while allows the children of undocumented immigrants to apply for college tuition aid, and about new election laws – presumably meaning early voting – that will impose new costs on counties, unless the state covers the expense in the upcoming budget.

He charged that “the Second Amendment came under fire” with the new gun laws, which included a “red flag” law that allows police, school administrators and family members to petition a judge to confiscate firearms from someone found to be dangerous to himself or others.

“These bills, sponsored by downstate Democrats, fail to recognize the importance of firearms to upstate hunters and sportsmen, or to those who live in rural areas where police response can be lengthy,” Seward said. “These measures will increase costs and barriers for law-abiding gun owners while criminals will simply ignore them.”

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