By Miranda Reale
KINGSTON – Taking a step toward a second run for New York’s 19th Congressional District, Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan filed a notice to replace Rep. Antonio Delgado on the ballot on Monday. Appointed by Gov. Kathy Hochul earlier this month, Congressman Antonio Delgado is leaving Congress to become the New York Lieutenant Governor, a move that paves the way for a special election to fill Delgado’s unexpired term ending on December 31, as well as a November election for a congressional district that is currently being drawn.
Though Ryan has yet to announce his candidacy himself, the announcement came from a spokesperson and the two-term executive has yet to say if he will run for the seat and will likely go up against Republican Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro who has been actively campaigning for the seat.
“Today papers were filed in Albany as part of a technical procedure to ensure that County Executive Ryan has as many options as possible as he continues to discuss with his family and neighbors about a potential candidacy for Congress,” Ryan’s spokesperson Dan Torres said.
Uncertainty looms in the upcoming races though as district lines undergo changes as a court-appointed special master is scheduled to submit a new map for New York’s 26 congressional districts next week. Determining voter enrollment in the new 19th District and which party holds an advantage, the decision will dictate the fate of the revised districts.
As the district is currently configured, Democratic Chairwoman Kelleigh McKenzie said that Ryan is the only Democrat interested in running and is confident in the decision.
“We think he would be an excellent candidate,” she said. The notice of substitution that Ryan filed with the state Board of Elections on Monday was the deadline for the filing, and Torres added that “Ryan will make a decision in the coming days.”