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Numbers watchers at Bill Owens HQ in Plattsburgh. Photo: Mark Kurtz
Numbers watchers at Bill Owens HQ in Plattsburgh. Photo: Mark Kurtz

NY21: Nerves on both sides as Congressional race numbers come in

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Brian Mann and David Sommerstein are camped out at the campaign headquarters of Bill Owens and Matt Doheny, respectively, as the two candidates for the 21st District Congressional seat wait out the results of what's been one of the toughest races the North Country has seen this season.

Brian Mann checked in with Martha Foley to talk about the mood at Owens HQ, and about his take on some of the other races.

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10:20 pm

Brian, it sounds like things are heating up there a little bit.

Yeah, there is. There’s a good size crowd here of Bill Owens’ supporters. The, you know, former Democratic Party chairwoman of the state, June O’Neill, for St. Lawrence County is here to support him. Good outpouring of support right now. The numbers are showing him down by a significant margin in the early tallies, so there is definitely nervousness and people watching the numbers very, very closely. On the other hand, there’s a lot of cheering and clapping here as people are seeing the more national numbers—seeing the Senate race tallies, seeing President Obama’s tallies—so kind of a mixed mood so far.

Well, we’re also hearing from David Sommerstein over in Watertown at the Doheny headquarters, that they’re nervous over there, so at least there’s some of that going around on both sides tonight.

Yeah. These numbers are still close enough, and another thing that—at least what I’m seeing so far—it’s hard to tell where these numbers are coming from, and until we get a little clearer sense of what the geography of these early returns are, it’s hard to tell what they really mean, you know? Bill Owens has most of his support over here in the Plattsburgh area, a little bit softer support in the Watertown area, and then his toughest terrain is down south around Glens Falls. And so until we know sort of where this first [flurry] of numbers is coming from, it’s a little hard to read where we’re at right now.

We don’t have many numbers from any of the state or the races in the region, but there are a lot of numbers coming in nationally and, you know, it sounds like there’s a lot of nervousness from coast to coast tonight.

Yeah, absolutely. And, you know, while—as the numbers look very strong for Barack Obama in terms of the Electoral College obviously, he’s down right now in the popular vote and that means he’s still vulnerable as the vote goes west. And so it’s going to be very, very tense until they start to call some of these tighter, battleground states. I think in terms of some of our State Assembly races here, there’s also some, you know, big questions left. The Janet Duprey-Karen Bisso race, we haven’t seen any numbers there yet and that’s something people here are waiting to see, really eager to find out how Janet Duprey fares this evening. So that’s another big mystery so far.

 


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