Global Strategy Group has become an issue in yet another federal race, this time in NY-23, where GOP candidate Doug Hoffman is calling on Democratic Rep. Bill Owens to dump the consulting/polling firm in the wake of its $2 million settlement for its role in the AG Andrew Cuomo’s pay-to-play pension fund probe.

In a press release, Hoffman noted that Owens, who has been in office for less than six months, has paid nearly $70,000 to Global, which he calls a “sleazy firm,” including $34,850 for “research surveys” (I assume that’s a fancy way of saying “polling”) in his most recent filing with the FEC.

“Obviously, Bill Owens remains oblivious to the fact that the voters of the 23rd Congressional District, the state and the nation are sick and tired of the culture of corruption that pervades Albany and Washington,” Hoffman said.

“They are fed up with the back room deals and pay-to-play mentality that has become standard operating procedure in halls of Congress. No wonder 8 out of 10 Americans don’t trust our government. When a company gets fined $2,000,000 by New York’s Attorney General it’s pretty obvious they’ve been up to no good.”

“The voters of the 23rd Congressional District deserve to know why Bill Owens has not severed all ties with the firm.”

Hoffman, of course, has his share of consultants, a number of whom hail from outside New York – a fact with which The Watertown Times recently took issue.

So far, none of Global’s clients have jettisoned the firm, despite the best efforts of at least one other Republican challenger.

GOP US Senate hopeful David Malpass has repeatedly called on Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand to cut ties with Global, but she has refused. Nassau County DA Kathleen Rice, who recently hired the firm to work on her AG campaign, is also remaining loyal.

UPDATE: The intrepid Jude Seymour of The Watertown Times notes the following quote from Owens’ chief of staff Bradley D. Katz regarding the congressman’s decision not to cut Global loose that ran last Saturday:

” We’ve spoken with the firm and inquired about the facts of the case and the steps that they are taking to comply with the attorney general’s office, as well as to ensure that this was an isolated incident. We are satisfied with their response, and the campaign will continue to employ their services.”

So, Owens’ office has addressed the Global issue, just not to Hoffman’s satisfaction.