Primaries Tuesday for GOP congressional seat, Assembly seat

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Facing no primary opponent Tuesday, Congressman Anthony Brindisi, D-22, Utica, weighed in Juneteenth and a potential controversy over whether to continue to honor Christopher Columbus.
 
Brindisi issued the following statement on Juneteenth on Friday: “Today marks the 155th anniversary of Juneteenth, the day in 1865 when the last enslaved people were freed in Galveston, Texas, after they learned of the Emancipation Proclamation. Since that day, our country has come a long way on the road to equality for Black Americans, but, as we are witnessing every day, we have a long way to go. Juneteenth is a day to reflect on past injustices and recommit to building a brighter, more equal, more just future for every American, no matter the color of their skin. I promise to continue to educate myself about the systemic problems Black Americans face, listen to and learn from our Black community leaders, and work with both parties to enact meaningful, lasting change for future generations.”
 
Also this week, Brindisi weighed in on dueling petitions over the fate of a statue of the Italian navigator and explorer Christopher Columbus on the Parkway in Utica. WKTV reported on an online petition drive calling for its removal, and on petitions against its removal. Columbus is a source of pride for many Italian-Americans, but is also blamed for deaths of Native Americans in the Caribbean and ultimately North America.
 
Brindisi released this statement Thursday:
 
“Columbus may have sailed the ocean blue in 1492, but he should stay where he belongs -- on the Parkway -- in 2020 and beyond.”
 
22nd District Republicans campaign
 
Republicans in the 22nd Congressional District are deciding who will face Brindisi Tuesday, choosing between Claudia Tenney, the New Hartford attorney and business owner and former state legislator who preceded Brindisi in the seat, and George Phillips, the Binghamton-area educator and one-time congressional aide who has sought the nomination twice before. Early voting has already begun.
 
Phillips toured the district to greet voters, including a stop in New Hartford. Tenney on Friday toured Utica’s Metal Solutions Inc., a woman-owned maker of components for HVAC, furniture, lighting, mass transit and refrigeration, and touted her business background and agenda for rebuilding American manufacturing, taking on China, and how to support small business.
 
Endorsements for 121st Assembly seat
 
Also the subject of a primary Tuesday is which Democrat will run for the 121st New York Assembly District seat, which includes all of Madison County, Sherrill, Vernon, Augusta, Marshall, Sangerfield, Bridgewater, and most of Otsego County. The district is represented by John Salka, a Republican who defeated Democrat Bill Magee, who had been in office 28 years, in 2018.
 
The candidates are Dan Buttermann, an Oneonta school board member and Hartwick College lecturer, and Corey Mosher, a Bouckville farmer and chairman of Cornell Cooperative Extension of Madison County.
 
The district includes all of Madison County, Sherrill, Vernon, Augusta, Marshall, Sangerfield, Bridgewater, and most of Otsego County. The district is represented by John Salka, a Republican who defeated Democrat Bill Magee, who had been in office 28 years, in 2018.
 
Buttermann this week announced endorsements from the following:
 
Oneonta Mayor Gary Herzig; Cooperstown Mayor Ellen Tillapaugh; former Oneonta Mayors Kim Muller and Jeff Katz; former Oneida Mayor Max Smith; New Lisbon Supervisor Ed Lentz; Peterboro community leader Dot Willsey; physician and community leader Ben Friedell; Joe and Carole Valesky, John Nichols and Marianne Simberg of Oneida; Doug Weaver of Sullivan; Danny Lapin and Clark Oliver of the Otsego County Board; Kaytee Lipari Schue of Oneonta Common Council; Cooperstown Trustee Rich Sternberg; Tammy Hayes of Nelson; Ann Jones of Fenner; and Steve Polgar, formerly of Oneonta and now a candidate for Assembly from Long Island.

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