Three GOP Candidates Vie For NY Senate Seat

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand (azipaybarah/flickr)

A divided New York State Republican Party will have three primary candidates vying for a chance to run against freshman Democratic Senator Kirsten Gillibrand in the fall.

Bruce Blakeman, a former Nassau County legislator, earned just over half the votes at the Republican convention this week. Blakeman got the party's official endorsement, but he'll face a challenge from fellow republicans David Malpass, a former Presidential advisor, and former Congressman Joe DioGuardi in the September primary.

Blakeman is trying to appleal to grassroots supporters and Tea Party activists.

"I'm criticizing a class of elitists who think they can control this party with power and money," Blakeman said.

Republican party chairman Ed Cox said the infighting was good.

"We're an energized party. Of course we have contests."

In the gubernatorial race, Republicans rejected Cox's preferred candidate, Steve Levy, in favor of former Congressman Rick Lazio. He'll face a challenge from upstate businessman Carl Paladino, who said he'll petition his way onto the September ballot.

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