McMurray’s Orientation Comes On Several Fronts

From the Morning Memo:

Democratic congressional candidate Nate McMurray has had a turbulent week so far.

McMurray decided to attend the congressional orientation down in D.C. after a late invite from friendly Democratic members. However, by late Tuesday, he said the Republican-led Committee on House Administration had essentially rescinded the invitation.

With the support of his own party, the NY-27 candidate sought to keep things quiet while the two sides battled it out internally. Yesterday afternoon, he confirmed he was being blocked from participating in any joint events.

McMurray blamed the decision on his Republican opponent, with whom he is still battling over the outcome of the general election.

“I am very disappointed by Congressional Republicans catering to Chris Collins’ demands, who is under indictment on 11 felony counts and spent his campaign lying and hiding from his constituents,” McMurray said. “I came to D.C. to equip myself to hit the ground running and better serve the people of Western New York once the results are official.”

“It is shameful that Collins is continuing his efforts to diminish the will of the voters and call this race before all votes have been counted. As usual, he is actively undermining the future of this district and our country.”

The public reaction to his claims appeared to have helped McMurray’s cause, as he tweeted last night that he was back at orientation.

“We shamed Mr. Collins’ buddies (who tried to kick us out) into letting us back into orientation,” McMurray claimed. “What can I say? Never quit. And…#FightLikeHell.”

A spokesperson for the House Administration Committee told the New York Post McMurray was not initially invited because he had conceded the NY-27 race on election night, and the invitation has since been extended.

McMurray, who has since insisted that his emotional speech last Tuesday was not a concession, remains down several thousand votes to Collins, but believes he has begun closing the gap as absentee ballots are counted.

Full Slate Ahead For Morelle After Tonight’s Swearing-In Ceremony

From the Morning Memo:

Congressman-elect Joe Morelle, describes today as the “relatively easy” day for him this week.

All he has to do is take part in the congressional orientation process for all new members as well as attend his own swearing-in ceremony this evening. On Wednesday, Morelle said things start in earnest.

“It’s a little surreal,” he said. “Obviously we’ve been planning this for the last couple months but you get through elections sometimes, we really focus on the campaign and then it’s over and then you have to really, especially in our case, quickly get your head sort of reoriented.”

Unlike other new members, Morelle will start voting immediately. Last week, the Democrat not only won his mid-term race but also the special election to serve out the remainder of the late-Louise Slaughter’s terms.

Morelle said he’s not sure what bills will be in front of him between now and Friday but has staff working on it.

“I have some folks that have already traveled ahead of me to Washington and they’re scoping that out and then we’ll get a rundown on the bills that are going to be before the House,” he said.

Morelle does have family members in D.C. for the ceremony. He said while the work ahead of him and the speed at which everything’s happening can make it difficult to focus, the significance of the moment isn’t lost on him.

“It’s obviously an incredible privilege and an honor to be chosen to represent anyone’s community so I’m excited by that,” he said. “I’m humbled by it and obviously the chance to finish out Louise’s last several weeks here is a very special moment.”

Morelle considered Slaughter a close friend and read a passage at her funeral in March.

NY-22: Police Conference of NY Endorses Tenney

From the Morning Memo:

The Police Conference of New York endorsed Rep. Claudia Tenney in her bid for re-election to New York’s 22nd District.

“Claudia Tenney is the law and order candidate. In Congress, she has always stood up to support our men and women in blue. She’s successfully delivered important funding for equipment upgrades for local police departments and the resources we need to keep our communities and families safe. The Police Conference of New York proudly endorses Claudia Tenney’s candidacy for the United States House of Representatives, said President of the Police Conference of New York, Richard Wells.

Tenney faces Democratic Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi in the upcoming general election.

“Our law enforcement officers put their lives on the line each day to keep our families safe. We are all grateful for their service and sacrifice and it is a distinct honor to receive this endorsement. In Congress, I’ve been a staunch advocate for law enforcement, and fought tirelessly to secure federal funding that provides our law enforcement with the best resources possible to keep our communities safe and secure our border,” said Claudia Tenney. “I will continue to be a strong voice for our state and local law enforcement officials.”

In a recent October Spectrum News-Siena College poll, Brindisi led Tenney 46 to 45 percent. 53 percent of district voters said they approved of the job President Trump is doing and that same number prefers Republicans to maintain control in Congress.

The candidates faced off in a Spectrum News debate yesterday, Thursday, October 25th at Colgate University.

NY-11: Rose Slams Donovan’s Credibility in New Ad

In the race for New York’s 11th congressional district, Max Rose, the Democratic candidate challenging Republican incumbent Rep. Dan Donovan, released a new TV ad criticizing his opponent for ostensibly failing to have the backs his constituents.

Rose highlights his military experience in the ad, “I’m Max Rose, and one thing I learned in Afghanistan is that you’ve gotta fight like hell to make things better.”

“You know what, I see it just like you do. That bridge traffic at 7 a.m., those needles in the gutter. And as long as we have sellouts like Dan Donovan, its never gonna change.”

Rose faces Rep. Dan Donovan in the upcoming general election for the district that covers Staten Island and part of Brooklyn.

Farley Ad Criticizes Gillibrand on ICE

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Chele Farley launched a new digital ad criticizing opponent Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand’s call to abolish the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, more commonly known as ICE.

“With New Yorkers facing real threats from terrorists, sex-traffickers and ruthless machete-wielding international gangs like MS-13, Kirsten Gillibrand’s solution is to abolish ICE — that is the definition of lunacy.”

Farley says Gillibrand’s “wacky 2020 socialist agenda” is out of touch and dangerous.

“Not only did law enforcement experts call Gillibrand’s idea leftist lunacy…it should be pretty clear to everyone… Gillibrand must be fired.”

Farley and Gillibrand will go head to head in a Spectrum News debate this Sunday, October 21st at 7 p.m. at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs.

Gillibrand is seeking her third term, she replaced former U.S. Senator and First Lady Hilary Clinton in 2009, winning a special election in 2010. Farley is a political newcomer, she has made a career in finance, working at both Goldman Sachs and UBS Capital.

McMurray: Collins’ 2020 Court Date ‘Embarrassing’

From the Morning Memo:

Indicted NY-27 Republican Rep. Chris Collins is not scheduled to stand trial in federal court until February 2020.

That would be roughly a year and a half after prosecutors brought charges against him for alleged insider trading and lying to the FBI. Collins’ current Democratic opponent, Nate McMurray, called the judge’s decision shocking and embarrassing for Western New York voters.

“Now it’s official, Chris Collins will be beholden to his defense attorneys for the next year and a half, not the voters, not the hard-working people of Western New York, but his lawyers,” McMurray said. “He won’t just be a part-time, he’ll be a no-time congressman.”

If Collins wins re-election, he could potentially serve well over half of his next term before there is any resolution is his legal case. McMurray pointed out Collins has already been stripped of his committee assignments by House Speaker Paul Ryan because of the allegations against him and the litigation that has occurred as a result.

Ryan is on his way out as speaker, and it’s not clear if whoever replaces him would allow Collins to serve on committees in 2019 if the voters decide to return him to Washington.

McMurray insisted it won’t come to that, because he intendeds to defeat Collins in the general election next month.

“He won’t help the people of this region,” the candidate said. “He can’t help the people of this region. He never did. There couldn’t be a clearer contrast in this race. He will not let go of his congressional seat until this trial is over, or until the voters take it from him. They will.”

McMurray believes he has the momentum in the race with union support, a recent endorsement from LG Kathy Hochul – a WNY native who was the last Democrat to represent the NY-27 district, which has been reconfigured to be even more GOP-dominaant, until she was ousted by Collins – and an internal poll suggesting the race is tied right now.

NY-21: EMILY’s List Endorses Cobb

EMILY’s List, the pro-women political action committee, endorsed Democrat Tedra Cobb’s congressional bid in New York’s 21th District.

Cobb is challenging the Republican incumbent seeking a third term, Rep. Elise Stefanik.

In a statement, EMILY’s List president Stephanie Schriock said:

“Tedra Cobb is a community leader who is prepared to stand up for North Country working families in Congress. She was inspired to run after Republicans, including incumbent Elise Stefanik, voted to cut rural health care and Medicaid funding for opioid addiction. When elected, Tedra plans to fight for quality, affordable health care and work toward bipartisan solutions to address the opioid epidemic. As a small business owner and former elected local official, she also cares deeply about creating a strong local economy and expanding economic opportunity for North Country families.

“Tedra is running against Rep. Stefanik, who has consistently voted for policies that would hurt women and families in the 21st District. In addition to supporting Republican attempts to take away health care from millions of Americans, Elise has also supported efforts to defund Planned Parenthood and has voted to undermine equal pay protections for women. Tedra is the champion that the people of North Country need fighting for them in Washington – and EMILY’s List is excited to fight for her in the race to flip this seat.”

The race in the 21st is one Democrats hope flows into a successful “blue wave” this November.

NY-19: NYC PBA Endorses Faso

Rep. John Faso was endorsed by the New York City PBA in his re-election campaign for the seat in New York’s 19th congressional district.

“It is an honor to have the endorsement of the NYC PBA. New York City police officers have one of the toughest jobs in America, and they work tirelessly to ensure New York is safe. It will be a pleasure to continue working with police unions across the state to ensure they are properly equipped, and put in a position to succeed. New York wouldn’t be what it is without the law enforcement officers who serve our communities.”

PBA President Patrick Lynch said in a letter, “On behalf of the NYC PBA, it is my pleasure to announce the endorsement of John Faso in New York’s 19th district. John’s commitments to public service and law enforcement are apparent, and we look forward to continue working with him towards our shared goal of a stronger, safer New York.”

The Republican is making his bid for a third term, facing Democratic political newcomer and attorney Antonio Delgado. On Oct. 23, the pair will meet in a debate hosted by Spectrum News.

NY-27: McMurray Asks For $10K For Ad

From the Morning Memo:

Democratic NY-27 candidate Nate McMurray spent yesterday afternoon shooting his first TV advertisement.

Simultaneously, his campaign sent out a fundraising email claiming it needs to raise $10,000 immediately in order to purchase airtime to get the ad up and running.

McMurray’s camp said it needs to respond to a “false” and “racist” ad Republican Rep. Chris Collins released in late September, showing the Democrat speaking Korean with words that appear to be subtitles, but, in fact, are not a true translation of what McMurray said.

However, McMurray himself insisted his commercial will not be a direct response to Collins, and instead will feature his “positive message.”

“My commercials will emphasize thatRepublicans and Democrats in D.C. failed us,” he said. “Collins is Exhibit A.”

McMurray has made a point not to take corporate donations, which he said has limited his fundraising capacity. He has not released how much he reported raising and spending in his recent FCC filing, though he has said contributions hit an uptick after the news broke that Collins has been indicted on charges of insider trading and lying to the FBI.

Collins, meanwhile, has well over $1 million in his campaign account, and has been spending it on media buys. Neither candidate is receiving much – if anything – in the way of financial assistance from their respective national party campaign committees.

The McMurray email also linked to a recent segment on MSNBC in which on-air personality Chris Hayes featured the Collins ad as one of the worst of the 2018 election cycle thus far.

“Getting our own ad on the air is crucial to making sure we reach voters across the district so they hear directly from Nate about what he’s fighting for,” Team McMurray wrote.

The candidate said the production crew still needs to edit his commercial, so it will still be some time before it starts airing – even if a sufficient amount of money is raised toward paying to get it on the air.

NY-21: Cobb Stacks Wood in New Ad

Democrat Tedra Cobb, challenger to Republican Rep. Elise Stefanik in New York’s 21st District, released a new ad Wednesday.

The 30 second TV spot “North Country” displays picturesque scenes from the eponymous district, a farmer’s tractor, men hunting and family-owned dairy farm foil Cobb’s own cameo–the congressional candidate is busy piling split wood. It’s part of a platform and image set to separate Cobb from her opponent, who she dubs a Washington insider. Cobb wants it clear, she’s a proud outsider.

“We know that when the voters of Northern NY hear our positive message, it resonates. They are tired of being represented by a DC insider who doesn’t understand our values or reflect our priorities. Unlike Rep. Stefanik, I am not taking a dime from corporate donors or lobbyists so they won’t own my vote in Washington. The people of New York’s 21st Congressional district deserve a representative who is focused on ways to make their lives better, not lining the pockets of millionaires and billionaires. I say to Congresswoman Stefanik and those who would sell us off to the highest bidder, hands off the North Country.”

“My opponent and her special interest allies have filled the airwaves with negative attacks on me that have really turned voters off. People are wondering – why doesn’t Congresswoman Stefanik use her ads to explain her votes to take healthcare away from 64,000 Northern New Yorkers and close rural hospitals? Why doesn’t she run ads touting her vote to let companies dump toxic coal waste into our waterways and bring acid rain back to the Adirondacks?”

Cobb and Stefanik have been locked in what at times has turned into a nasty political scuffle. The Stefanik campaign has released several anti-Cobb ads, crowning her as ‘Taxin’ Tedra’ and linking her to Governor Andrew Cuomo. Cobb for her part, has faced additional campaign clouds; in August she filed for an independent ballot line after a secretly recorded, and subsequently mass distributed, video showed her saying she supports an assault rifle ban but couldn’t voice that support out loud for fear of polarizing voters. The request was ultimately denied, and Cobb will appear as the Democratic candidate in November.

Cobb has been endorsed by Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul and former NY-21 Rep. Bill Owens.

Stefanik is an incumbent seeking a third term.