Metzger, Skoufis led local Albany delegation in fundraising

Freshman Sens. Jen Metzger and James Skoufis each raised almost $100,000 in the first half of the year, the biggest campaign hauls among the eight state lawmakers representing parts of Orange, Ulster and Sullivan counties.

Campaign finance reports filed Monday reinforce the fundraising edge that comes with being in a majority party – and the perils of sliding into the minority in Albany. Metzger and Skoufis are Democrats who won their seats in a blue wave that catapulted Democrats into a strong majority in the formerly Republican-led Senate.

James Seward, the longtime Republican senator from Otsego County who represents part of Ulster County, used to be the Insurance Committee chairman and raked in major contributions as a result of that, taking in more than $163,000 in the first half of 2017, for example. He raised $54,000 this year as a minority-party senator with no chairmanship.

Assemblyman Colin Schmitt, a New Windsor Republican who won Skoufis’ former 99th Assembly District seat, touted the $34,000 he raised in a press release on Thursday, saying he collected more than any other new Assembly member, Democrat or Republican. He noted that he also out-raised four fellow Assembly members representing other pieces of Orange County.

“Our campaign’s fundraising strength and success in the first report is a critical sign of the grassroots support of my efforts,” Schmitt said in a press release. County Republican Chairwoman Courtney Greene said Schmitt’s “fundraising strength is a testament to people’s strong support and faith in Colin and the recognition of the overwhelming effort he puts in every day on behalf of our district.”

Here are the amounts each legislator from the region reporting raising and spending since Jan. 11 and their account balances as of July 11.

Sen. Jen Metzger, D-Rosendale

Raised: $98,474

Spent: $9,686

On hand: $102,571

Sen. James Skoufis, D-Woodbury

Raised: $98,336

Spent: $22,818

On hand: $111,238

Assemblyman Kevin Cahill, D-Kingston

Raised: $60,800

Spent: $30,256

On hand: $62,579

Sen. James Seward, R-Milford

Raised: $54,030

Spent: $58,911

On hand: $231,721

Sen. George Amedore, R-Rotterdam

Raised: $37,949

Spent: $18,761

On hand: $68,939

Assemblyman Colin Schmitt, R-New Windsor

Raised: $34,512

Spent: $4,592

On hand: $30,784

Assemblyman Karl Brabenec, R-Deerpark

Raised: $13,413

Spent: $10,332

On hand: $20,186

Assemblywoman Aileen Gunther, D-Forestburgh

Raised: $11,600

Spent: $19,586

On hand: $168,965

Assemblyman Jonathan Jacobson, D-City of Newburgh

Raised: $8,465

Spent: $921

On hand: $20,399

Assemblyman Brian Miller, R-New Hartford

Raised: $2,985

Spent: $1,923

On hand: $3,180

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