One of the losing Democratic candidates in last week’s Democratic primary in New York’s 21st District is now mounting a challenge to incumbent Republican state Senator Betty Little.
Republican Betty Little was first elected to northeastern New York’s 45th district state senate seat in 2002. This year she may have a Democratic challenger. “I am circulating petitions to run in the state senate for district 45.” Emily Martz says she has not officially announced a campaign, and other than confirming her petition effort she declined to discuss further details. “I’m certainly glad to talk more with you about it after the filing deadline which is July 12th.”
Little is in her eighth term and says she works hard during the election season whether she has an opponent or not. “I enjoy getting out in the district meeting with people talking to them, seeing what is going on, what their needs are, how I can be of assistance. But I love this part of the job actually better than the job in Albany because I’m out with the people. I’m really talking and seeing and going to things and meeting with people. So Election Day is important and campaigning is very important. And I’ve always done it whether I had an opponent or not.”
SUNY Plattsburgh Political Science Chair Dr. Harvey Schantz expects any Democrat to face an uphill battle against Little. “You have a very strong incumbent. You have an advantage for the Republicans in terms of enrollment. All of these candidates who lost the Democratic primary, Katie Wilson, Emily Martz, they’ve all become political brands. And so it makes sense that Emily Martz would run for the state senate. After all she’s in a campaign frame of mind. She has self-confidence. She has name recognition. And so if you don’t win this time maybe you can run again when the seat becomes vacant down the road or keep your name out there and run for another office.”
Martz came in fourth in the five-candidate Democratic Congressional primary. Tedra Cobb won that race and will face Republican Elise Stefanik in November.
Martz has just over a week to gather 1,000 signatures from Democrats in the senate district that includes Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Warren and parts of St. Lawrence and Washington counties.