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April 28, 2014

Challenges mount in 21st Congressional District race

PLATTSBURGH — The two Republican candidates for the 21st Congressional District seat are claiming their opponent’s petitions to get on the primary ballot are improper.

Elise Stefanik, the party’s endorsed candidate, is challenging Matt Doheny’s petitions to get on the Independence Party and Conservative Party lines for the June 24 primary.

Stefanik’s camp says that Doheny submitted petitions with names that were improperly recorded for both party primaries.

A statement from Stefanik’s campaign attorney James Walsh said they have filed objections to both petitions.

“Unfortunately, after reviewing the petitions submitted and notarized by the Doheny campaign for the Independence and Conservative party lines, it became very clear that the Doheny campaign was more worried about inflating numbers and not about following the legal petitioning process,” it statement says.

“That is misleading to the voters, compromises the process, and reinforces a troublesome pattern of legal transgression. We also believe it will ultimately disqualify the Doheny campaign from the unqualified right to the Independence Party line.”

‘MAY GO TO COURT’

The challenge to Doheny’s Conservative Party petitions has become moot since the party has endorsed Stefanik, ruling out any possibility of a primary.

But a primary for the Independence Party line is scheduled to take place on June 24, the same day as primaries for the Republican, Democratic and Green parties.

Walsh said Stefanik’s camp will consider all options.

“We will fight to protect the integrity of the electoral process and to reveal the truth. In the coming days, we may move to litigation in order for a court of competent jurisdiction to review these questionable tactics and petitions,” he said.

“Our campaign is about right and wrong, and setting a higher standard for service, not winning at all costs. Being honest in public representations is a critical standard in that regard. 

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