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February 8, 2016

Ex-Congresswoman Won’t Seek Rematch in New York | #NY24

Buerkle won't try to come back to Congress.

Former Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle, R-N.Y., announced on Wednesday that she will not seek a rematch with her two-time rival, Rep. Dan Maffei, D-N.Y.

“Serving the people of Upstate New York in Congress has been one of the highest honors of my life,” Buerkle wrote in a morning email to supporters. “While I love Upstate New York and will always remain deeply committed to the people who live here, I have decided that I will not seek election to Congress in 2014.”

Her decision is good news for Democrats, who can now put the 24th District out of play and in their column for the 2014 cycle.  In 2010, Buerkle defeated a one-term Maffei in one the cycle’s closest races.

But a federal judge redrew the state’s lines following the decennial redistricting process, making the district more favorable for Democrats. In a 2012 rematch, Maffei defeated Buerkle 49 percent to 43 percent. Meanwhile, President Obama carried the district with 57 percent.

The race would be tough for any Republican, even a former member. But earlier this year, Buerkle indicated her interest in running again for this district.

“Since departing office, I realize that I can be an effective advocate on issues from outside of Congress,” she wrote. “Whether it is through my role as a Commissioner at the Consumer Product Safety Commission or as a politically engaged citizen, rest assured, I will continue to be active in the public arena, working toward ideals that will create a better, stronger America.”

  • terjeanderson

    Actually I wouldn’t be so sure this constitutes “good news for Democrats.”

    Despite having been elected to one term in Congress (from an earlier more Republican district), Buerkle is too right wing, too much of a tea partier for this Obama district. The NRCC had to spend millions trying to defend her seat last time out, only to lose because she was so out of touch with the politics of her district.

    Republican strategists would much prefer a different Republican candidate who they view as more moderate and more electable than Buerkle. Onondaga County Comptroller Bob Antonacci will probably announce soon, and may be joined by District Attorney William Fitzpatrick or State Senator John De Francisco. Any of them would be an underdog, but it is far too earlier to say that Buerkle’s decision takes the 24th “off the table.” Quite the opposite – it is probably marginally good news for the NRCC.

  • Rob_Chapman

    Terje makes a very good point.

    Buerkle is a very poor fit for her central New York State district.

    Buerkle is shrill, self-righteous, dishonest and self-absorbed.

    Her plurality of a few hundred votes was the result of disgust with the sudden sharp descent of the US economy into deep recession.

    A moderate Republican, especially one more associated with Onondaga County instead of Albany, would probably keep this seat in play.

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