Alan Greenblatt is a GOVERNING correspondent.E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
The New York Times (I know -- boo, hiss) has a feature about the big-money special state Senate election tomorrow in upstate NY. Republicans have held the Senate for decades but Democrats have been gaining ground, which makes the seat vacated by James Wright a hot property:
The 48th Senate District, in the upper reaches of the state, almost irrelevant in state politics for so long, has become the Fort Sumter of a multimillion-dollar war between Democrats, led by Gov. Eliot Spitzer, and Republicans, for control of the Senate.
Both parties have shoveled millions of dollars into the race, much of it for television and radio advertisements and mailers. Joseph L. Bruno, the Senate majority leader, has pledged more than $2 million from Senate Republicans for Mr. Barclay. The state Democratic Party has pledged about as much to Mr. Aubertine. Most of the money is coming from outside the district. Of about $722,000 raised by Mr. Aubertine in the latest filing period, 3.5 percent came from within the district, according to the New York Public Interest Research Group, as did 1.4 percent of the $699,000 raised by Mr. Barclay.
"The Republicans have come on lean times in New York in terms of statewide offices and are very worried about the statewide majority," said Lee M. Miringoff, director of the Marist Institute for Public Opinion. "The margins are very slim and can only get slightly slimmer. And looking ahead to November, it starts to become, in what will be a presidential election year and a good Democratic turnout in New York, somewhat worrisome for the Republicans, independent of Spitzer's low standing at the moment."
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