We reported today about the two vacant Assembly seats that will leave perhaps half of Dutchess County without representation on Jan. 1 — until Gov. Andrew Cuomo calls a special election for the two seats, as well as ones in Buffalo and Yonkers.
And when Cuomo does call the special elections, there are plenty of interest already in one seat: the one being vacated by Assemblyman Marcus Molinaro, R-Tivoli, Dutchess County.
At least a half dozen potential Democrat and Republicans candidates have had discussions about running for Molinaro’s seat, according to the Dutchess County GOP and Democratic chairs. Molinaro was elected Dutchess County Executive earlier this month.
“There will be people that will be coming through,” said county GOP chairman Michael McCormack.
Among the Republican names mentioned: former Assemblyman Patrick Manning, who held the seat for 12 years before Molinaro beat him in a primary in 2006; Richard Wager, who ran unsuccessfully for Congress in 2008; recently defeated Pine Plans supervisor Gregg Pulver; and Michael Kelsey, a Dutchess County legislator.
Manning said today he’s considering a run.
“I started getting calls after Mark’s win, and I’ve told people that I’m going to enjoy the holidays and figure out in the new year where we are going,” Manning said.
Democratic county chairwoman Elisa Sumner said she’s heard from several people interested in running for Molinaro’s 103th District seat, which covers the suburban towns in Dutchess County and parts of Columbia County. She wouldn’t say who was interested.
In special elections, the parties pick the candidates for the ballot.
Party leaders will also have to pick candidates to run to succeed Assemblyman Tom Kirwan, R-Newburgh, who passed away Monday at age 78. Kirwan represented the 100th Assembly District, which includes parts of Orange, Dutchess and Ulster counties.