Report: Sweeney May Seek Comeback in ’08

Posted February 15, 2007 at 10:00am

Is ex-Rep. John Sweeney (R) preparing for a political comeback?

Local Republican chairmen in the 20th district told The Post-Star in Glens Falls this week that they have heard directly or indirectly from the former four-term Congressman that he may be seeking a rematch with freshman Rep. Kirsten Gillibrand (D), who ousted Sweeney in November.

“There’s a few scenarios that could play out,” Warren County GOP Chairman Michael Grasso told the newspaper about Sweeney’s political plans. “Let’s just say none of those options would be for lower office [than the House of Representatives].”

Michael Lisuzzo, the Republican chairman in Sweeney’s hometown of Clifton Park, said he will support the former Congressman if he runs again.

But Sweeney is not the only Republican who may want to take on Gillibrand in 2008, and it’s unclear whether any of the other potential candidates would automatically defer to him. Former state GOP Chairwoman Sandra Treadway is actively exploring the race. State Assemblyman Roy McDonald, former Assemblyman John Faso and Richard Wager, an aide to New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg (R), also are mentioned. Wager, who lives in New York City, this week told the Poughkeepsie Journal — a newspaper his father once published — that he expects to establish an exploratory committee in the next month.

Gillibrand beat Sweeney 53 percent to 47 percent despite the fact that President Bush won the upstate district by 8 points in 2004.

— Josh Kurtz