November 2, 2018 • Syracuse Post-Standard

Former GOP Rep. Sherwood Boehlert endorses Democrat Anthony Brindisi

Sherwood Boehlert, a prominent Republican who represented parts of Central New York in Congress for 24 years, on Friday endorsed Democrat Anthony Brindisi for the seat he once held.

Boehlert, of New Hartford, becomes the latest local Republican to reject the party's nominee, Rep. Claudia Tenney, in Tuesday's election.

"Assemblyman Brindisi will work hard with everyone in Congress on a bipartisan basis, which is the only way to achieve the desired outcomes that benefit all," Boehlert said in a statement.

"Our current representative, Congresswoman Claudia Tenney, does the opposite," Boehlert said. "I am appalled by her blind partisanship and unwillingness to listen to other points of view."

Boehlert is the longest-serving member of Congress from the Utica area in the past 36 years. He was an influential Republican leader in Congress who led the moderate wing of the GOP through the 1990s until his retirement in 2007.

Other local Republicans to endorse Brindisi ahead of Tuesday's election include former Rep. Richard Hanna, who retired at the start of 2017, Frankfort Mayor Rick Adams and state Assemblyman Marc Butler, R-Newport.

Brindisi said in a statement that he holds Boehlert up as a model of the kind of representative he wants to be in Congress.

"Congressman Boehlert set an example as a representative who got things done for this district by working with everyone," Brindisi said. He added, "He was a strong leader in Congress who wasn't afraid to go against his party on issues that were important to him, and I hope to follow in his footsteps."

Tenney, R-New Hartford, has been a staunch supporter of President Donald Trump and his policies. Trump and his son, Eric, have campaigned for the first term congresswoman.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House press secretary, plans to visit Central New York and the Southern Tier on Saturday to attend rallies with Tenney supporters and volunteers.

The campaign between Tenney and Brindisi has emerged as one of the most competitive House races in the mid-term elections.

A Syracuse.com/Spectrum News/Siena College poll of likely voters in the 22nd Congressional District showed Brindisi with a statistically insignificant lead (46-45 percent) last week. 

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