In early February, 11 of the 12 Republican county chairs in New York’s 21st House district announced their endorsement of Elise Stefanik in the race to replace the retiring Bill Owens. Stefanik was the first candidate to announce her intent to challenge the incumbent Democrat, joining the race in August before he announced his retirement. Now, Stefanik faces a Republican primary challenge from Matt Doheny, who lost two close elections to Owens. Today, in our continuing series looking at the candidates for the sprawling district seat, WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley talks with Elise Stefanik.
29-year-old Elise Stefanik is a Harvard graduate who worked in the George W. Bush White House. Before she announced her candidacy last August, she had been meeting with community, small business and political leaders across the district.
Elise Stefanik, from Willsboro, says the 21st is a candidate-driven district and her campaign is in a strong position to recapture the seat in November. Before Owens, it had been held by Republicans since Reconstruction.