ITHACA, N.Y.—While the U.S. House of Representatives NY-19 race and New York State Senate 52 District race came down to the wire, with both races still hotly contested into the wee hours of the morning, they both appear to now be resolved.
In the Congressional race, slight favorite Josh Riley was upset by Republican Marc Molinaro, even after the district lines were redrawn throughout 2022 and were expected to give Riley and nationwide Democrats a more comfortable path to victory. That seat could prove to be very important as control of the House of Representatives could come down to a margin of two or three seats, as seems likely now.
Molinaro had already declared victory by about midnight after Election Day, but Riley released a statement saying he wanted to wait until mail-in ballots were counted. Riley’s mind changed at some point Wednesday, perhaps when major news organizations began calling the race for his opponent with Molinaro’s lead remaining at over 6,000 votes.
Shortly before that, around 3:30 on Wednesday, Republican and former Binghamton mayor Rich David conceded his race against Democrat and fellow Binghamton politician Lea Webb for New York State Senate. It was a rare close victory in New York for the Democrats, whose party took a palpable hit throughout the state even as nationwide results were far more favorable.
“I want to congratulate Lea Webb on her victory in the 52nd District race. We spoke earlier today, and while there are still absentee and affidavit ballots to be processed, it appears we’ll fall just short,” David wrote in a Facebook post. “This campaign has been a whirlwind, as the district lines changed more than half a dozen times. Nonetheless, I’m proud of the thousands of Democrats and Independents who crossed party lines to support our campaign.”
Webb, who had also already declared victory like Molinaro, released a statement of her own celebrating the win. She becomes part of a substantially Democratic State Senate, though Democrats lost quite a bit of ground in the other legislative house, the State Assembly.
“My campaign started almost a year ago with a small, yet fierce coalition of believers that grew into a collective of volunteers, organizers, voters and supporters,” she said. “Our goal was simple: to uplift the voices of working people in our community who, for years, have gone ignored or overlooked. I’ve said many times throughout this race that my campaign is not about me, and maintain that belief tonight. It was always about creating a movement, a people-powered movement, so that upstate communities can get the resources that they deserve. Thank you to the voters of Broome, Tompkins and Cortland counties. I am deeply honored to have been chosen to represent our community and I look forward to rolling up my sleeves and getting to work. This is the first step in a long, but exciting journey to bring equity to ALL New Yorkers.”