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Petitions due this week; NRCC criticizes Woolf on SAFE Act; Green party candidate Funiciello profiled; DCCC conducting robocalls

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Ballot petitions are due this week for all candidates in the contest for New York's 21st Congressional District seat. Petitions can be filed today through Thursday with the New York state Board of Elections. Candidates need 1,250 signatures from party members to get on the ballot for the Democratic and Republican party lines and 5 percent of the number of enrolled voters for other party lines.

There are 396,310 registered voters in the district as of April 2012, according to the New York state Board of Elections.

Contrast that with the elections taking place in India right now, where there are 814 million eligible voters and 935,000 polling sites, according to the Associated Press.

— DPF

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The National Republican Congressional Committee put out a statement Monday morning attacking Democratic Congressional Candidate Aaron Woolf for “flip-flopping” on his stance regarding the New York Secure Ammunition and Firearms Act of 2013, a particularly unpopular piece of state legislation in the north country.

Positing that Mr. Woolf had been essentially brain-washed by his handlers in the national Democratic party, the NRCC called on Mr. Woolf to clarify his position, citing a WWNY story from March 14 in which Mr. Woolf declined to speculate on whether he would have voted for the SAFE Act and a Watertown Daily Times story in which he said he did not support it.

Then the NRCC leveled the boom, reiterating their labeling of Mr. Woolf as a “Brooklyn liberal.”

“Brooklynite Aaron Woolf clearly doesn’t have the political courage to represent North Country families in Congress. For the first month of his campaign he refused to talk about issues, and now that he as deemed it convenient to start giving interviews he is either flip-flopping on the SAFE Act or refusing to say whether he will repeal the job killing medical device tax,” NRCC spokesman Ian Prior said in the release.

Mr. Woolf is a documentary filmmaker who divides his time between a home in the Adirondacks and Brooklyn, where he owns a cafe and grocery called Urban Rustic Market & Cafe.

Mr. Woolf’s campaign manager, Stuart Rosenberg, released a statement in response.

“Aaron Woolf does not support the SAFE Act. It is arbitrary in its provisions, presents myriad challenges for law enforcement, and it disenfranchises gun owners who are among the most concerned citizens about gun violence,” Mr. Rosenberg said in an email. “This is yet another attempt by Republican operatives to deflect attention from their failed economic policies, their lack of focus on creating jobs, and their willingness to privatize Medicare and propose risky schemes for Social Security.”

— DPF

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The Glens Falls Post Star spoke with Green Party candidate Matt Funiciello at Rock Hill Bakehouse Cafe, the small business he runs in Glens Falls.

Mr. Funiciello, 46, told the paper that he viewed his cafe and its “celebration of openness and diversity” as an example of what he’d like the world to be and that he began to get involved in politics during the U.S.’s initial involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan in the early 2000s.

Mr. Funiciello said that he viewed his campaign as a breath of fresh air to voters who are tired of business as usual and that he felt voters would identify with his authenticity.

“I have faith that they are going to recognize that a real person is actually running who is one of them and if they really want to do something visionary ... they will vote for someone who actually cares about them. I don’t know if I will pull it off, but I know I’m going to treat it with seriousness,” he told the Post Star.

Donald L. Hassig, a political activist and director of Cancer Action, NY, is also seeking the Green Party nomination.

To read the full story, click here: http://wdt.me/5kdEw6

— DPF

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Ahead of Thursday’s vote on the Rep. Paul Ryan budget proposal in the GOP controlled House, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is conducting a series of “robocalls,” linking Republican candidates Matthew A. Doheny and Elise M. Stefanik to the plan and urging voters to voice their opposition to the candidates.

“We are giving New Yorkers the opportunity to connect directly with Elise Stefanik and Matt Doheny and tell them to oppose the Republican budget that heaps tax breaks and handouts on special interests and the wealthiest Americans, and forces the middle class to pay the price,” said DCCC spokesman Marc Brumer in an email. “With this radical budget, Stefanik, Doheny, and Republicans in Congress are turning their backs on New York’s middle class families, raising their taxes, costing them jobs, and ending the Medicare guarantee.”

The calls are the second phase of a “Battleground: Middle Class” campaign launched last week by the DCCC with web ads also targeting Mr. Doheny and Ms. Stefanik by linking them with the plan, which Democrats are positing will be a political liability for the Republican Party.

Republicans apparently don’t see it that way, however, as a story by John Bresnahan and Jake Sherman on Politico pointed out on Sunday. You can read that story here: http://wdt.me/cJMvMk

An Associated Press-GfK poll released Saturday also pointed to a more favorable view of Republicans in Congress than had previously been reported. You can view poll results here: http://wdt.me/Gtnv8H

— DPF

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Assemblywoman Janet L. Duprey, (R-Peru), has been recognized by the Hispanic women’s organization Entre Nosotras, the Adirondack Daily Enterprise reported today.

The group honored her for her advocacy of women’s rights and children with special needs, the paper reported.

The award was presented to Duprey by Assemblywoman Carmen Arroyo (D-Bronx) at a luncheon in Albany.

Read the full story at http://wdt.me/Duprey

— PLW

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