Tenney leading Brindisi but no clear winner pending absentees

Former Republican Congresswoman Claudia Tenney led incumbent first-term Democrat Anthony Brindisi in a rematch for New York’s 22nd Congressional District on Election Night but there was no clear winner with nearly 70,000 absentee ballots out in the sprawling district.
With 334 of 565 election districts reporting, the state Board of Elections showed Tenney had 53.7% of the vote to 42% for Brindisi.
The vote totals as of 11:30 p.m. were 134,680 for Tenney to 105,493 for Brindisi.
Libertarian Keith Price had about 2%.
Brindisi spoke to supporters and media via Facebook Live from his home in Utica, with his wife and children and said that the outcome is not likely to be known until the absentee ballots are counted, which is not scheduled to begin until at least late this week.
“What’s clear is that with over 68,000 absentee ballots in this district requested we’re in for a long night and likely a long couple of weeks,” Brindisi said.
Tenney expressed confidence.
“Claudia is confident and feeling good. We fought a hard campaign for what matters most — the future of our country and communities in upstate New York. But we aren’t taking anything for granted. Every vote will be counted,” said campaign communications director Sean Kennedy.
In the 119th District state Assembly race, incumbent first-term Democrat Marianne Buttenschon led Republican challenger John Zielinski with about 51% to 43% in early returns.
In the state Assembly District 121 race in Madison County and southern Oneida County, first-term Republican incumbent John Salka of Brookfield led Democrat Dan Butterman of Oneonta with about 61% to 31% of the Election Day vote. The district includes all of Madison County, Sherrill, Vernon, Augusta, Marshall, Sangerfield, Bridgewater, and most of Otsego County.
In the state Senate District 53 in Madison County and Kirkland and Paris in Oneida County as well as much of the Syracuse area, Republican challenger Sam Rodgers and first-term Democrat Rachel May were nearly tied, each with about 47% of the votes reported on Election Day.
In the presidential voting, President Donald Trump had more than 63% of the Election Day vote in Oneida County to former Vice President Joe Biden’s 34%.
State Sen. Joseph Griffo, Republican of the 47th District covering Rome, Utica and much of northern Oneida County, was unopposed.
Republican Sen. Kenneth Blankenbush was also unopposed in Assembly District 117. District 117 includes the Oneida County towns of Forestport, Remsen, Ava, Annsville, Florence, Camden, Vienna, Verona, Westmoreland and Kirkland, all of Lewis County a parts of Jefferson and St. Lawrence counties.
The 22nd District campaign was a rematch of 2018.
Brindisi narrowly beat Tenney, then the incumbent, in 2018 only after disputes over counting of absentee ballots went to court.
The 22 District covers all of Oneida, Madison Chenango and Cortland counties, and parts of Oswego, Herkimer, Broome and Tioga counties, with Utica, Rome and Binghamton the largest population centers. Neither party has a majority by enrollment, but Republicans hold a 38% to nearly 32% advantage over Democrats.
Brindisi, an attorney who formerly served in the state Assembly and Utica school board, is on the House Armed Services, Veterans Affairs and Agriculture Committees and of the Blue Dog Caucus of moderate to conservative Democrats, and the Problem Solvers Caucus, a group split evenly between the major parties and mostly from districts without a strong party enrollment majority or, like Brindisi, are in the minority party of their respective districts.
Tenney, also an attorney with a family printing and publishing business, formerly served in the Assembly from a different district than Brindisi’s, and served one term in the House of Representatives after being elected in 2016. She stressed her agreement on nearly every issue with President Donald Trump and cited in her campaign support of the Republican-led 2017 tax reform or cuts legislation, efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act coupled with legislation to preserve its requirement that insurers cover pre-existing conditions, and securing support for Rome military support units in the defense budget, as well as initiation of a law calling on the U.S. military to buy only American-made flatware such as made by Sherrill Manufacturing, a bill passed while Brindisi was in office.


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