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Doheny supporters collected legal signatures

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Elise Stefanik, a Republican congressional candidate, recently alleged that her primary opponent “played political and potentially fraudulent games” during the petitioning process. We were offended.

This candidate, who was completely unknown to us nine months ago, was questioning our integrity. We had just spent countless hours collecting signatures for our candidate, Matt Doheny.

We sacrificed time with our family and friends and braved freezing temperatures, snow, wind and rain. Dogs chased us, and one of us even accidentally fell down a flight of stairs.

We did it because we like Matt. We like that he grew up here and that he’s started his business and his family here.

We’re impressed that he left college with $150,000 in debt, and through hard work and determination became a successful businessman. We like that he saved tens of thousands of American jobs during his career, and that he’s still out there trying to help troubled companies regain their footing.

Matt is the best candidate, and we were happy to make these sacrifices to help him get on the ballot. Our sole payment was the thanks we received from Matt and his wife, Mary.

The state Board of Elections hadn’t even reviewed the petitions, but Matt’s opponent was already casting doubt on the legitimacy of our effort. She said it was “clear that the Doheny campaign was more worried about inflating numbers and not about following the legal petitioning process.”

The board reviewed our work and upheld 97.4 percent of Matt’s Independence Party petitions. They invalidated just 43 of the 1,666 signatures we all collected. In Ms. Stefanik’s fight to “reveal the truth,” the truth became evident: We followed the petitioning process almost perfectly.

Matt’s opponent said her campaign is about “right and wrong and setting a higher standard for service. Being honest in public representation is a critical standard in that regard.” By Ms. Stefanik’s own standard, she has failed us. She was dishonest in how she publicly represented her opponent’s petition.

They were not “potentially fraudulent.” They were not “inflated.” They were not attained through “questionable tactics.”

We ask Ms. Stefanik to put her words to action and issue an apology for misleading voters regarding the validity of her opponent’s signatures. Otherwise, we can rightfully assume that Ms. Stefanik has no intention of doing what she says, hardly meeting the “critical standard” we look for in choosing our next member of Congress.

Jude Seymour

Meredith George

Watertown

Jeremiah Maxon

Adams

Brian Peck

Carthage

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