MAYVILLE – Democratic Committee members in Chautauqua County have announced their endorsement for congress in the 2018 General Election.
Jamestown attorney Eddie Sundquist, the only candidate of the pool of seven to come from Chautauqua County, collected 59 percent of the ballot vote to beat out six other contenders to win the endorsement of the Chautauqua County Democratic Committee. Sundquist received the majority of votes on the fourth attempt by more than 100 committee members.
Democrats across the state’s 23rd Congressional District have been working to identify the candidate who will best challenge Rep. Tom Reed (R-Corning), who will be seeking a fifth term in office.
Fellow Democratic hopefuls Tracy Mitrano (Penn Yann) and Max Dell Pia (Owego) were second and third runner ups respectively in the nomination process. Also nominated were Linda Andrei (Ithaca), Rick Gallant (Corning), Ian Golden (Ithaca), and Charles Whalen (Geneva).
Party Chairman Norman Green says the endorsement process for the county Democratic Committee is a precursor to the June 26 primary where rank-and-file Democrats will vote to finalize the party’s candidate to run in the general election.
The field of Democratic contenders this year is the largest since the creation of the newly drawn 23rd congressional district back in 2012. In that year’s election, a total of three Democrats competed for the party’s nomination to face Reed, with the eventual winner being Ithaca’s Nate Shinagawa. There was no primary in 2014 and 2016 elections, with Democratic candidates Martha Robertson and John Plumb each having no competition from their fellow party members. In each of those three past elections, Reed was able to hold his seat.
The NY23 district extends along New York’s border with Pennsylvania from the shores of Lake Erie in Chautauqua County to the suburbs of Binghamton in Tioga County. Of those numerous counties in the district, Chautauqua County holds the largest overall population, while Tompkins County has the most registered Democrats.