Democrat Kathy Hochul has scored an upset victory in upstate New York House district, Tuesday. While Republicans had long been expected to snatch an easy victory, Hochul won 47% of the vote over the Republican candidate Jane Corwin, who had 43% despite her earlier lead.
The third independent candidate Jack Davis, with his 9% vote, may have drawn votes from those who otherwise would have voted for Corwin.
Hochul won the seat in New York's 26th Congressional District, which the Republicans have held since 1960, supported by the district's conservative majority.
Kathy Hochul has been the highest ranking female elected official in Erie County since 2007. Prior to her election, she served as First Deputy County Clerk for four years prior to her election. Kathy has earned a reputation as a fighter for her constituents while dramatically enhancing customer service.
Hochul's positions include preserving Medicare and opposing a privatized voucher payment system; raising taxes on citizens who make more than $500,000 per year; opposing free trade and developing alternative energy sources.
Hochul's victory speech, Tuesday night:
Tonight's victory is an achievement many called impossible. Tonight we showed that many voters are willing to ignore a party label and vote for the person and for the message they believe in. We showed that thousands upon thousands of voters are more powerful than millions of dollars in outside money. We showed that our grassroots army - including thousands of donors and thousands of volunteers, who knocked on more than 53,000 doors and made more than 77,000 calls and over the last four days -could overcome our enrollment disadvantage and the fact that we were outspent by more than 2-to-1.
You have all shown me, and this campaign, so much support.
We have shown that with forward-thinking vision, with new leadership, and the right issues behind us, we can make real change for the future.
We can help Western New Yorkers get back to work by helping small businesses create jobs.
And we can balance our budget the right way-- not on the backs of our seniors--but by closing corporate loopholes for companies that ship jobs overseas, and ending subsidies to Big Oil and yes, by making the multi-millionaires and billionaires pay their fair share.
And we can ensure we do not decimate Medicare.
We will keep the promises made to our seniors who have spent their lives paying into Medicare, so they can count on health care when they need it most.
The dominant issue at the election was Medicare, the federal health insurance program for retirees.
Republican leaders have endorsed the plan to transform Medicare into a private voucher system within 10 years.
Corwin lost her earlier lead when she expressed support for a GOP budget plan that would cut billions from Medicare.