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Delgado campaign is letting Republicans quarrel

Oct 20, 2020 6:33 am
Emilie Munson and Edward McKinley report in the Times Union that Rep. Antonio Delgado, a Democrat from Rhinebeck, would seemingly be facing long odds for re-election this November. He is running in a district, New York's 19th, that has been held by Republicans for 22 of the previous 26 years. The district voted for Donald Trump in 2016 by almost seven points. But the Cook Political Report rates his election as "likely Democratic" and he has a giant fundraising advantage against four opponents. Delgado is running against Green Party candidate Steve Greenfield, Libertarian Victoria Alexander, and Republicans Kyle Van De Water and Ola Hawatmeh. Delgado has limited his appearances with the media, and stopped holding open town hall meetings, instead letting the Republicans fight amongst themselves. Van De Water beat Hawatmeh in the Republican primary, but she has launched a write-in campaign that will surely siphon votes from the Republican line on the ballot. Delgado has raised $5.6 million for the election, and Van De Water has raised $50,000. For Hawatmeh, a group of Republicans are raising money but not reporting campaign finance figures. Trump, so far, has not endorsed Van De Water. Republicans have been in-fighting since before the primary election. “Understand this you can take your money and stick it up your ass. You have done great harm by pursuing your personal agenda instead of choosing to be a team player,” Greene County Republican Chairperson Brent Bogardus texted Hawatmeh in April, according to a screenshot obtained by the Times Union. “I personally could give a flying rats ass if you win this primary that you forced … you will never receive any support from me.” The 200 Republicans calling themselves the Old Guard don't agree and continue to back Hawatmeh. “Watching what they did to her, from calling her a Muslim to saying we’ll never vote for a Middle Easterner, my own party showed me that in many ways the Democrats were right: They’re a bunch of racist idiots,” said Bryan LoRusso, a Republican in Otsego County. “It was upsetting.” Fox News host Sean Hannity Tweeted last week that, “The way NY CD 19 has been handled is an absolute disgrace. I hope people are aware of the #writeinolahawatmeh option. This is why I am a registered conservative in NY.” Read more about this story in the Times Union.