New York: Independence Party Gives Treadwell Its Line

Posted July 14, 2008 at 6:35pm

Sandy Treadwell, the former state Republican chairman who is looking to challenge Rep. Kirsten Gillibrand (D) in November, won a key victory over the weekend when leaders of the New York Independence Party voted to give him their ballot line in November.

Unlike other minor parties in New York that generally affiliate only with Democrats or Republicans, the Independence Party, which grew out of Ross Perot’s first presidential bid and has been associated with wealthy Rochester businessman Tom Golisano, tends to split its endorsements between Democrats and Republicans.

Treadwell, a wealthy former New York secretary of state, is the favorite of national and state GOP leaders to face Gillibrand in November, but he must first get through a primary with military veteran Michael Roque and retired police officer John Wallace.

Treadwell is also seeking the Conservative Party nomination and will face Roque in a Conservative primary on Sept. 9, according to the Glens Falls Post-Star.

Konst Opts Out of Race in Reynolds’ District

There is one less Democrat running in the race to replace retiring Rep. Tom Reynolds (R).

Erie County Legislator Kathy Konst, one of four Democrats who had been competing for the nomination in Reynolds’ 26th district, abruptly changed course last week and filed to run for the state Senate instead.

Konst was enticed at least in some measure by support for her Senate bid from multimillionaire businessman Tom Golisano, a three-time Independent gubernatorial candidate who recently set up a $5 million fund to help reform Albany.

Konst’s withdrawal from the Congressional race leaves factory owner Jack Davis, attorney Alice Kryzan and Iraq War veteran Jon Powers in the hunt for the Democratic nomination. Powers is the favorite of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and most local party leaders.

The primary winner will face businessman Christopher Lee (R) in what is expected to be a very tight general election race.