The 2014 House of Representatives elections will be held on November 4 and both districts encompassing Poughkeepsie have been classified as noteworthy. Representative Sean Patrick Maloney looks to defend his seat in the House for the 18th Congressional District of New York against Republican Nan Hayworth, the woman he defeated in the previous election. Meanwhile, the large gap between candidates in the 19th Congressional District will most likely mean the victory of Republican incumbent Christopher Gibson.
This year’s Congressional election in the 18th District of New York will be crucial to both parties, as Republicans look to defend, and perhaps expand, their 31-seat majority in the House. Democrats, who are hopeful that the upcoming election will narrow their disadvantage by retaining current seats and win swing votes in states like Arizona and Iowa, have concentrated heavily on mitigating the consequences of outcries against the left arising from President Obama’s unpopularity.
Throughout his reelection bid, Maloney has been running on many of the ideas that earned him his seat initially, calling for more affordable college costs and student loans, advocating stronger effort to reduce the deficit and demanding equal pay legislation for women. His campaign has also placed significant emphasis, on bipartisan cooperation. Before the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce, Maloney said, “I want to be that kind of member of Congress, who understands your struggles, who understands how hard you work, who understands that you never ask him much, that you just want a government that’s as good as you are, that you just want a government that’s up there trying to do the right thing.” (The Poughkeepsie Journal, “Maloney, Hayworth speak to Dutchess chamber,” 8.20.14)
Maloney continued, “That is why I try to be bipartisan. That is why I have been working across the aisle.”
In his rematch with the former congresswoman, Maloney has labeled himself a “Bill Clinton Democrat,” while leading the charge against Hayworth for her perceived far-right beliefs, calling her a “tea party congresswoman.” Huffington Post, amongst others, have substantiated Maloney’s claims, drawing attention to her voting record in support of deregulating big business, looser restrictions on oil drilling and defunding transit services.
Meanwhile, Hayworth’s campaign has focused on promoting the former representative as a responsive politician. Hayworth has often spoken of her readiness to cross party lines, as well as her responsiveness to constituents. In her commercial, “Always Here,” one woman praises these concepts. She says, “Nan is not a typical politician. She is loving, she is kind, she is supportive. Nan is a public servant. She’s always responsive. She’s only a phone call away.” Her platform includes ending Common Core in the Hudson Valley, relieving the tax code’s perceived burden on the middle class,and fighting the Affordable Care Act.
According to a Politico poll, Maloney, whose campaign has garnered the support of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, is leading Hayworth by eight points, with under four weeks until the election.
In New York’s 19th Congressional District, however, the results of the upcoming House race appear to be fairly certain, as Republican incumbent Chris Gibson leads Democratic challenger Sean Eldridge by 24 points in the polls; this would be his third Congressional win since retiring from the Army in 2010.
Despite the likelihood of his reelection, Gibson has strongly campaigned and discuss his goals. In his recent Congressional debate with Eldridge in Ulster, Gibson said, “I feel inspired to try to make a difference for our folks. This is a calling” (WNYT, “Gibson, Eldridge square off in congressional debate,” 10.7.14).
Students interested in voting in either of these district must submit their voter registration by Oct. 10. Maloney will be hosting a talk on campus on Oct. 9.