It is in this spirit that I am writing to let you know I am supporting Bill Owens for Congress and urge you to do the same.
It’s not in the cards for me to be your representative, but I strongly believe Bill is the only candidate who can build upon John McHugh’s lasting legacy in the U.S. Congress. John and I worked together on the expansion of Fort Drum and I know how important that base is to the economy of this region. I am confident that Bill will be able to provide the leadership and continuity of support to Drum Country just as John did during his tenure in Congress.
In Bill Owens, I see a sense of duty and integrity that will guide him beyond political partisanship. He will be an independent voice devoted to doing what is right for New York. Bill understands this district and its people, and when he represents us in Congress he will put our interests first.
Please join me in voting for Bill Owens on Tuesday. To address the tough challenges ahead, we must rise above partisanship and politics and work together. There’s too much at stake in this election to do otherwise.
Well, I take back what I said about “reading between the lines” of Scozzafava’s statement yesterday. It’s good to see her doing the right thing here, and I’m sure it will only enrage the teabaggers further. (“See! She wasn’t a real Republican, just like we said!”) Quite a few other folks are also switching to Owens, among them the New York State United Teachers union, which had previously spent about $50K on Dede’s behalf (see below). Several other unions are following suit, including the AFL-CIO and a local branch of the United Auto Workers. And Scozzafava’s husband, Ron McDougall – himself a union official – also endorsed the Democrat:
“This has been a difficult day for my family. But the needs and concerns of the men and women of the 23rd Congressional District remain paramount,” McDougall said. “As such, I wholeheartedly and without reservation endorse the candidacy of Bill Owens.”
“As a life-long labor activist, I know that Bill Owens understands the issues important to working people. On the other hand, Doug Hoffman has little regard for the interests of workers.”
“Hoffman’s opposition to the Employee Free Choice Act, coupled with his support for the failed policies of the Bush Administration make him a poor choice to serve the citizens of the 23rd Congressional District.”
Similarly, the Watertown Daily Times had no problem enthusiastically backing Owens (they had previously given their nod to Dede):
Of the two, Bill Owens is by far the superior and only choice.
The Democratic candidate has demonstrated a willingness to listen to people about ways in which he could help the district as their representative in Washington. Mr. Owens has remained focused on the economy and job creation throughout his campaign. At the same time, he has shown an understanding of the military, a keen desire to help dairy farmers, an ability to work with labor unions and an eagerness to learn more about the vast, 11-county district that he hopes to represent.
Also, below is a chart summarizing all independent expenditures in the NY-23 race from Sept. 23rd (the first time outside groups spent money here) through Oct. 31st:
|Club for Growth||C||$645,285|
|Susan B. Anthony List||C||$78,700|
|National Republican Trust||C||$83,173|
|National Organization for Marriage||C||$49,099|
|Campaign for Working Families||C||$25,000|
|Gun Owners of America||C||$8,490|
|Family Research Council||C||$1,978|
As noted above, the NYSUT (the union behind VOTE/COPE) just switched over to Owens from Scozzafava.