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Kirsten Gillibrand

The Empire

Long, Turner and Maragos: The Race to Replace Gillibrand

Friday, June 15, 2012

Republicans haven’t held a U.S. Senate seat in New York since 1999, when Alfonse D’Amato lost to Charles Schumer. But instead of rallying around one candidate, this year there is a three-way race for an unseasonably early primary on June 26.

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The Empire

Giuliani Endorses Turner in Senate Race

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani is endorsing Rep. Bob Turner, the surprise victor in the special election to replace disgraced Rep. Anthony Weiner, in his candidacy for the Senate.

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The Empire

Long Issues Debate Challenge; Turner Accepts

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

U.S. Senate candidate Wendy Long is challenging her two Republican primary opponents to a series of three debates before their June 26 primary.

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The Empire

Republican Senate Hopefuls Lag Behind Gillibrand in Fundraising

Friday, April 20, 2012

Republican candidates hoping to unseat New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand are having a hard time matching the junior senator’s fundraising abilities.

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The Empire

SI Borough Prez Will Endorse Long for Senate

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Staten Island Borough President James Molinaro will endorse Republican Wendy Long in her bid for U.S. Senate this year, Long's campaign announced Tuesday morning.

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The Empire

Republican Voters Uncertain as Gillibrand Dominates in a New Poll

Thursday, April 05, 2012

Democratic Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is in solid shape for her re-election campaign, which reported $9.1 million on hand. At the same time polls show that New York's junior senator currently leads in match-ups against her possible GOP challengers.

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It's A Free Country ®

Bracket | Most Fashionable Politicos

Monday, April 02, 2012

We've picked sixteen fashionable politicians; it's up to you to decide who's the best-dressed.

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WNYC News

Gillibrand, Vets Seek Faster Troop Withdrawal From Afghanistan

Monday, March 26, 2012

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand on Sunday called for the Obama administration to accelerate the pace of troop withdrawal from Afghanistan. Policy analysts who study Afghanistan took issue with Gillibrand’s recommendations.

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The Empire

Wendy Long seeks to be fresh new face in battle with Gillibrand

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (Colby Hamilton / WNYC)

The article was updated to correctly state where Wendy Long attended law school. As was pointed out by Michael Gaynor, Dartmouth has no law school.

Inside a union hall near Times Square on Monday, New York’s junior senator, Kirsten Gillibrand, stepped onto a wobbly wooden platform to accept her party’s nomination to keep her job. Surrounded by “Gillibrand/Senate” posters and gleeful supporters, the Senator spoke of the how much she’d done since being appointed by then-Governor David Paterson in early 2009, and of the values that underlie her reasons for wanting to get back to Washington DC.

“It was only two years ago that we were all together in Rye,” Gillibrand said. “We know how much work we have to do in Washington. We know--all of us--that Washington is broken. But together we are bound by a sense of core, common values that bring us together; convictions of what we care about--that shared vision of equality, justice, and fairness that we have to make progress on.”

Gillibrand spoke about her fight for the 9/11 health care bill and her desire to see the DREAM Act passed. She spoke about bringing manufacturing back to America and fighting for women’s rights in the face of a new onslaught.

Wendy Long (Karen DeWitt / NY State Public Radio)

Meanwhile, as Gillibrand spoke about women’s issues, another woman a few blocks further north was waiting for the results of a key vote in her quest to be the Republican to challenge the Democratic incumbent. Wendy Long, a Manhattan-based attorney, received the most votes at her party’s convention on March 16, but her 47.4 percent wasn’t enough to get her party’s official backing.

Now, as she begins the primary sprint against Congressman Bob Turner and Nassau County Comptroller George Maragos, Long was on the verge of receiving the Conservative Party’s backing, making her the clear front runner to challenge Kirsten Gillibrand for US Senate in November.

“If we can be sure of anything, it's that the immense challenges faced by our country and our nation cannot be solved by the same people in the same offices, casting the same votes for the same failed policies,” Long told Republicans in a speech at the convention. She cast herself as the fresh face in the race, looking to take Senator Gillibrand on her desire to see more women in politics.

Long may have joined the race late last month, but she has long been heavily involved in conservative activism and politics.

A native of New Hampshire, long attended undergrad at the local Ivy, Dartmouth, before studying law there and at Harvard and Northwestern. She went on to clerk for conservative Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas before joining the conservative Judicial Confirmation Network (the URL for which now goes to the Judicial Crisis Network) in 2005. An active supporter of the Supreme Court nominations of both John Roberts and Sam Alito, Long became the group’s lead voice of opposition to President Obama’s nomination of Justice Sonia Sotomayor.

“Judge Sotomayor is a liberal judicial activist of the first order who thinks her own personal political agenda is more important that the law as written,” Long wrote in a piece appearing on the National Review’s website in May 2009. She didn't limit her criticism to print:

In her letter announcing her run, Long says her experience working as a lawyer for “clients whose businesses were struggling against government overreach and overregulation – the things that choke opportunity and entrepreneurship, kill jobs, and undermine our constitutional freedoms” pushed her to get into the race.

We will fight with everything we’ve got against Barack Obama, Kirsten Gillibrand, and the Democratic Establishment in Washington, whom I believe are the real “one percent” – the elite liberals who think they are smarter than the rest of us, who want to take our hard-earned money and tell us how to spend it instead of letting us take care of our own families and communities, who think that government and not private enterprise creates jobs, and who if not stopped will destroy our Constitution and limited self-government.

Speaking with reporters on the floor of the Republican convention, Long pointed to the similarities that she and Senator Gillibrand share.

“Kirsten Gillibrand and I are very similar in our biographies. We’re both mothers, we’re both lawyers. But we couldn’t be more different in our beliefs, in our principles, in our politics,” Long said. The appeal of Wendy Long for New York Republicans and conservatives could be the total package of similarities and differences in a year when women may be the one of the biggest issues.

The congressional primary will be held on June 26.

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The Empire

Three GOP candidates to appear on primary ballot for US Senate

Friday, March 16, 2012

Three Republican candidates vying for the chance to take on Democratic United State's Senator Kirsten Gillibrand have secured spots on the GOP primary ballot in June.

Nassau County Comptroller George Maragos, Manhattan attorney Wendy Long, and freshman New York City Congressman Bob Turner all secured at least 25 percent of the vote at the party's convention today in Rochester.

Here's the official breakdown:

Wendy Long -- 47.4 percent
George Maragos -- 27.4 percent
Bob Turner -- 25.3 percent

Candidate statements:

Bob Turner

This was an amazing victory for a campaign that began just 72-hours ago.   I am enormously grateful for all the support I received at the convention and I am energized to deliver my message of job growth and fiscal responsibility in every corner of this state.  Senator Kirsten Gillibrand does not deserve re-election. She defrauded the voters of this state with promises that she would act as a moderate.  Instead she has governed from the far left, and is now ranked the most liberal senator in America. That is a firing offense.

This campaign has just begun.  My team and I will be working non-stop from now until Election Day to address the critical jobs and economic issues of our times.

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The Empire

Freshman Congressman Bob Turner announces bid for US Senate

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Congressman Bob Turner (Courtesy of the Turner campaign)

This first hints of this were reported by Politico's Maggie Haberman and the confirmation by Celeste Katz of the Daily News, and it's now official: Queens-based Republican Congressman Bob Turner is tossing his hat into the ring to challenge US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand in November.

The full statement is below. Turner now joins three other candidates: Rye Town Supervisor Joe Carvin, Manhattan attorney Wendy Long, and Nassau County Comptroller George Maragos.

I will travel to the Republican State Convention in Rochester later this week and humbly ask for the Republican nomination for the United States Senate. I will respectfully ask for the Conservative nomination a few days later at that Party's convention. I have made my intentions known to the other Republican candidates in this race.

I ran for the House six months ago as a private citizen fed up with what is happening in Washington.  I could not sit and watch career politicians sink my nation deeper into economic crisis.  Brooklyn and Queens voters, of all political parties, graciously responded by sending me to Congress. It now appears that their district has been eliminated.

There is serious work to be done to get this economy back on track, and I will not walk away from that work now. I will run for the Senate, and I will run to win.

This post has been updated from its original.

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The Empire

Republican Senate candidate Maragos gets spot on primary ballot

Thursday, March 08, 2012

By Karen DeWitt, New York State Public Radio Capital Bureau Chief

George Maragos, the front running Republican to challenge US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand admits he faces an “uphill battle," but the former banker and current Nassau County Comptroller says he’ll spend up to $5 million dollars of his own money to compete.

Maragos has secured 25 percent of the party's delegates support to guarantee a spot on the Republican primary ballot for the Senate seat. He says he expects more endorsements from county leaders in the coming days before the GOP convention March 16. Maragos is anti-abortion and personally against same-sex marriage, though he says he respects New York’s marriage law. But he says he’d rather focus on improving the economy, and that too much attention has been paid to social issues in the GOP Presidential campaign lately.

“The crises that we’re facing in our country are not the social issues, they’re the economic issues,” said Maragos. “We’re losing sight of that.”

Maragos says he needs $15 million dollars to run a credible campaign, and is willing to spend several million of his own fortune to do it. He’s facing potential primary challenges from Rye Town Supervisor Joe Carvin and New York City Attorney Wendy Long.

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It's A Free Country ®

The Fundraising Push After Komen-Planned Parenthood

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

In a move timed less than a week after the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation reversed its decision to withhold grant money from Planned Parenthood, the petition declares, “Enough is enough. We may have won this latest round, but our opponents aren't going away.”

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It's A Free Blog

Opinion: You Should Run for Office

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

There are plenty of reasons to be cynical about politics. But the answer isn't to bow out of electoral engagement completely.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Rep. Garrett: Keystone Pipeline, not Payroll Tax Cut, is Real Job-Creator

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Recap from It's a Free Country.

Welcome to Politics Bites, where every afternoon at It's A Free Country, we bring you the unmissable quotes from the morning's political conversations on WNYC. Today on the Brian Lehrer Show, US Congressman (R-NJ 5th) Scott Garrett discussed unfinished business including the payroll tax holiday and unemployment benefits.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Gillibrand: Keystone Pipeline 'Poison Pill' for Payroll Tax Cut

Monday, December 12, 2011

Recap from It's a Free Country.

Welcome to Politics Bites, where every afternoon at It's A Free Country, we bring you the unmissable quotes from the morning's political conversations on WNYC. Today on the Brian Lehrer Show, New York Senator (D) Kirsten Gillibrand rounded up news from Washington as the legislative session wraps up, from the payroll tax cuts to unemployment benefits and more.

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It's A Free Country ®

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand Backs Legislation to Crack Down on Illegal Guns

Monday, December 05, 2011

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said on Sunday that she will introduce legislation this week to crack down on corrupt gun dealers with the goal of eliminating the flow of illegal guns into New York.

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It's A Free Country ®

After 60 Minutes Report, Gillibrand Targets Insider Trading in Congress

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Less than three weeks after a 60 Minutes piece focused the spotlight on insider trading in Congress and the loopholes that allow members of Congress to invest based on non-public information they glean while doing their jobs, a new bill sponsored by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is gaining traction. 

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The Empire

Cuomo approval ratings remain high as Gillibrand, Schumer slip

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Courtesy of the Governor's office

Governor Andrew Cuomo's approval ratings continue to remain high, according to a new Siena poll, despite an overwhelming feeling among those polled feel Albany is no more transparent than it was when the Governor took office.

“After nine months in a difficult economic climate, it’s impressive that Governor Cuomo has 72 percent of voters viewing him favorably. However, even more impressive is the consistency with which voters from different regions and demographic groups view him,” said Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg in a statement. “He is viewed favorably by 71 percent of voters upstate and in New York City, and by 73 percent of downstate suburban voters."

Meanwhile, both of New York's Senators have seen their approval ratings slip from recent highs. Senator Charles Schumer's approval rating is at 59 percent, down from 67 percent in November of last year. Meanwhile, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand's 46 percent approval rating is down from an all-time high of 57 percent in February.

Perhaps more concerning for the junior Senator are the number of voters who say they'd prefer someone else in the job. More than a third of respondents continue to say they'd like to see Senator Gillibrand gone.

“Is the junior senator vulnerable? At this point only 37 percent of voters both view her favorably and are inclined to re-elect her while 21 percent see Gillibrand unfavorably and prefer someone else," said Greenberg. "Right now Gillibrand is ahead but she is well below 50 percent of strong supporters while a sizable percentage of New York voters currently do not know where they stand and could go either way come November 2012."

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It's A Free Country ®

The Process Is Political: A New, Regular Roundup

Monday, August 29, 2011

Through the 2012 election cycle, It’s A Free Country will keep a focus on the mechanics of elections, from voting rules, political party rules to redistricting to, of course, the money that fuels campaigns.

As part of that, we'll be keeping a regular eye on top-line news, undercovered stories, and opinion on our changing political process in a weekly roundup. As with most things around here, we welcome tips, thoughts, and fierce debate about whether any or all of this is good for our democracy. 

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