Hochul Says She Won't Run Against Higgins | News
Buffalo, N.Y. - During a visit to Women and Children's Hospital on Monday, Kathy Hochul actually came close to kissing a baby -and that's probably something she'll be doing lots of this year as she tries to hold on to her congressional seat.
Right now, Hochul has three choices of districts to run for re-election. None of them are especially very appealing.
A redistricting map drawn by a federal judge last week has Hochul's current district with seven percent more Republicans than Democrats, that's a very big number for a Democrat to try and overcome.
Hochul could also run in the new 23rd district, which is represented by Republican Tom Reed, it has a Republican enrollment advantage of three percent.
Or Hochul could run a primary against fellow Democrat Brian Higgins, in the heavily Democratic new 26th district which includes the cities of Buffalo and Niagara Falls.
From a pure numbers standpoint, that would probably be Hochul's best bet.
Scott Brown: "Is there any chance you'd run a primary against Brian Higgins for a congressional seat?"
Congresswoman Kathy Hochul: "I don't see that as a scenario. I'm a close ally of Brian Higgins, the two of us serve this area well, we're great teammates and we want to continue doing so."
Hochul says she's going to run where she's known best, in her reconfigured current seat.
Congresswoman Kathy Hochul: "My seat has not been eliminated, there's still a seat for me to run in up here, and that's what I intend to do.
Canisius College's Kevin Hardwick says given the big Republican enrollment advantage in the district drawn by the judge.
Big Republican names including state senator George Maziarz, State Senator Pat Galivan and former state attorney general Dennis Vacco are all taking a serious look at running against Hochul.
In addition there's former county executive Chris Collins and Iraq war veteran David Bellavia.
Kevin Hardwick: "The big question may not be whether Kathy Hochul runs there or not but who the Republican is going to be that represents that district because I think whoever comes out of that field would win in November."
Now there's still a chance that within the next few days the state legislature could agree to new congressional district lines, and that could be Hochul's best hope for holding on to her seat.
The highly respected Cook political report says the number one priority for Democrats in the state legislature is placing more Democrats in Hochul's district.
"Hochul's prospects depend on that. Under the judge's map, Hochul is the most endangered Democrat in the state and would be vulnerable to a credible Republican candidate," said David Wasserman of the Cook Report.