TUPPER LAKE — Tupper Lake Mayor and Franklin County Legislator Paul Maroun is seriously considering entering the race for the 21st Congressional District seat.
“It’s been gnawing at me that this district might be represented by somebody who really doesn’t know the district,” he told the Press-Republican Tuesday.
“We need somebody who has been around and who knows about the Olympic history in Lake Placid, the tanning industry history in Gloversville, the St. Lawrence Seaway, Fort Drum and PARC (Plattsburgh Airbase Redevelopment Corp.) and who is from here.”
Republicans have selected Elise Stefanik, 29, as their endorsed candidate to run for the seat being vacated by incumbent Democrat Bill Owens of Plattsburgh, who announced in January that he will not seek re-election.
Democrats chose Aaron Woolf, 49, who splits his time between Elizabethtown and Brooklyn.
While the two major parties have endorsed candidates, others can run in a primary on June 24. Candidates are allowed to begin getting signatures March 4 on petitions to enter the primary.
According to Clinton County Republican Board of Elections Commissioner Greg Campbell, 1,250 signatures are needed to get on the primary ballot.
Maroun, 62, said that although he is not endorsed by the Republican Party, he believes he can muster enough help to gather the required number of signatures, if he decides for sure to run.
“This is nothing against her (Stefanik), but I’ve talked to some party leaders in some of the counties, and I am willing to put up some of my own money, and I am confident I can get the signatures,” he said.
“I just don’t think it is fair to send someone to Washington to represent this district who really is not from here.”
Stefanik graduated from Albany Academy high school and went to Harvard. She worked in the administration of former President George W. Bush and was on the debate prep team for Rep. Paul Ryan, who was the Republican vice presidential candidate in 2012.