Larchmont Mayor Liz Feld announced on Friday, January 15, that she would not be running for United States Senate. She issued the following statement:
“New York needs an energetic and fiscally conservative candidate to challenge Kirsten Gillibrand for the United States Senate. But the timing for me to be that candidate is not right. I have been blessed with many personal and professional commitments, and they will likely require more of my attention this year than I could reasonably devote as a statewide candidate. Consequently, I will not challenge Kirsten Gillibrand for U.S. Senate in 2010.
“I will continue to participate in the state’s political discourse as an elected official and as spokeswoman for New Yorkers for Growth. I have been engaged in public policy for my entire professional career and I will continue making contributions to the public discourse wherever I am able.”
Ms. Feld’s announcement came a day after another Republican hopeful for the Senate, former Nassau County Legislator Bruce Blakeman, had signaled he would soon be announcing his candidacy.
Better known Republicans whose names were being circulated had already declared they were not running. These included New York Mayor Rudy Guiliani and United States Congressman Peter King.
And Closer to Home?
On the local political scene, Larchmont Village Republicans and Democrats will be caucusing at Village Hall on January 26 at 8 pm to select mayoral and trustee candidates for the Village Board. There had been some speculation that Ms. Feld would not run again for mayor, given her potential interest in the US Senate race.
Now, local political pundits will be rethinking their predictions.
Ms. Feld has emphatically stated that whatever else she decides, she is definitely not interested in another run for District 37′s New York Senate seat, now occupied by Suzi Oppenheimer of Mamaroneck Village. In 2008, Ms. Oppenheimer, a 13-term incumbent, defeated Ms. Feld, a newcomer to statewide politics, by 62%-38%.
But the climate may be more favorable this year to challengers – even Republican challengers in districts where their party is far outnumbered by Democrats. Witness the defeat of Westchester County Executive Andy Spano, a Democrat, to Rob Astorino, a Republican he had defeated handily four years ago.