Assemblywoman Jane Corwin and Sen. George Maziarz appeared to have a busy day talking with GOP leaders as they both mull a run for the 26th Congressional District seat vacated by disgraced Rep. Christopher Lee.
Corwin and Maziarz, both Republicans, said they are both seriously considering a run.
Corwin said she and her husband, Philip, have agreed that they’d put some of their own money into the race if she runs. Corwin comes from a wealthy family that started the Talking Phone Book company and she’s a former Wall Street investment banker.
She said the race could draw a lot of national money because it’s the only congressional race out there and comes after Lee’s resignation in scandal drew national attention. She wouldn’t say how much she’d put into the race, though.
“My husband and I are fully aware of that potential and have decided that we are committed, if I do decide to go ahead and run, we’ll commit the resources we have to ensure that I’m successful,” Corwin said this afternoon.
She said most importantly, though, the district needs a representative quickly.
“Right now, that district doesn’t have a voice in Washington,” she said. “There’s 700,000 New Yorkers who are being left out of the table on important issues, particularly the fiscal issues: cutting taxes, cutting spending, creating jobs. Those are the issues that matter to people now, and it’s critical that we get somebody in there as soon as possible who could be representative of those interests.”
As for Maziarz, his potential interest has caused consternation among his fellow Senate Republicans. If he runs and wins, the Senate would be temporarily gridlocked at 31-31. Republicans now hold a narrow 32-30 seat majority.
Updated: As some readers pointed out, if a Republican senator were to win the seat, it would create a 31-30 seat majority for Republicans, not enough to hold the 32 seats needed to pass legislation. So Republicans would need help from Democrats, likely the four members of the Independent Democratic Conference, to pass bills — at least until the seat is filled.
Maziarz, the third-highest ranking member of the Senate, said that issue is a factor, saying “The Senate is important. I just got a promotion there. I like what I’m doing. It’s going to factor into this thing.”
But Maziarz said he has to discuss with his family whether he should make the run, saying it could be a “once in a lifetime” opportunity.
He had lunch today with Erie County GOP chairman Nick Langworthy and has been talking with the chairmen of the state Conservative and Independence parties, as well as county chairmen.
Maziarz said he’s telling them “he’s very interested” and that he’ll make a decision, like Corwin, in the next few days.