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Stefanik rolls out slick new website; state legislative races start to simmer

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Elise M. Stefanik, Republican candidate for the 21st Congressional District seat now held by Rep. William L. Owens, D-Plattsburgh, has rolled out a slick new campaign website.

The site has an issues bar that gives the Stefanik platform for topics ranging from he environment to veterans affairs (although three of the links, including the health care platform link, were broken on Tuesday afternoon). It also offers supporters an easy way to donate with a credit card, or sign up as an Elise volunteer. The campaign’s press releases to date are also available for review.

There is also a social media center, which has the most recent posts of the Stefanik campaign’s Twitter and Facebook pages.

The website also lists the organizations and individuals that have endorsed Ms. Stefanik’s candidacy, and among those listed is the Clinton County Conservative Committee.

However, as Ms. Stefanik’s top Republican opponent, Matthew A. Doheny, pointed out more than a week ago, there is no such committee. That fact is confirmed on the state Conservative Party website.

Neither a call nor an email to the Stefanik campaign to discuss the apparent error were returned Tuesday.

“Accessibility and transparency are important to me so that voters know exactly who I am and the values that I stand for,” Stefanik said in a news release. “Our updated website is meant to provide people in the 21st Congressional District a better idea of the principles I hope to bring to Washington on their behalf, as well as a way to become an even bigger part of our team.”

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It is becoming clear, as well, that this is an election season for the state Legislature. Assemblyman Kenneth D. Blankenbush, R-Black River, Assemblywoman Addie J. Russell, D-Theresa and state Sen. Patricia A. Ritchie, R-Heuveltion, all are hiking the volume of news releases they’re sending out, and increasing their personal appearances across their districts.

Tomorrow, Times staff writer Brian Kelly will interview Republican Cape Vincent Councilman John L. Byrne III, who will soon announce his intention to seek Ms. Russell’s 116th Assembly District seat. Also seeking her post is Republican John S. Humphrey of Brownville and Conservative Russell J. Finley of Lisbon.

Ms. Russell, who voted for the Secure Ammunition and Firearms Act, much to the consternation of many of her constituents, could have a tough battle on her hands. However, with a potential three-way race in a largely Republican district, the Democrat could be the beneficiary of a split vote.

Mrs. Ritchie, on the other hand, has had no likely opponent step forward, and time is already getting short for a Democrat to seriously challenge the popular incumbent.

Sen. Joseph A. Griffo, R-Rome, who was elected to the 47th District post in 2007, will seek re-election this year, spokesman Jude Seymour said Tuesday. He said no one has as yet announced a challenge in the district that includes Oneida, Lewis and part of St. Lawrence counties.

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