Local Election News


Local political and 2020 election news, brought to you by News Director Michayla Savitt, Contributor Fred Balfour, and the News Team. Listen to our stories covering local elections below and find important deadlines and background on each local election.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, this year's NYS primaries and special elections have been postponed to June 23, 2020 and all voters are eligible to vote by mail (see below). After briefly being cancelled, the NY State Democratic Presidential Primary has been reinstated by court order. 

The early voting period will be June 13, 2020 – June 21, 2020.

General Election day is still November 3, 2020. The early voting period for the November general election will be October 24, 2020- November 1, 2020.

In New York's 125th Assembly district

Barbara Lifton announced in early February that she will not be seeking re-election for a tenth term. She has represented all of Tompkins County and portions of Cortland County for the last 18 years.

Since Lifton’s announcement, seven candidates have announced they are seeking the Democratic nomination for the 125th Assembly district. That group includes Sujata Gibson, Jordan Lesser, Jason Leifer, Seph Murtagh, and Anna Kelles from Tompkins County and Lisa Hoeschele and Beau Harbin of Cortland County. Libertarian Matthew McIntyre of Cortland County has dropped out of the race.

NY 125th Assembly (latest stories)

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Lisa Hoeschele of Cortland returns to WRFI to further discuss her bid for NY Assembly [AUDIO]

By Michayla Savitt | May 20, 2020

Lisa Hoeschele, CEO of Family Counseling Services in Cortland County, and Assembly candidate for New York’s 125th District, called into WRFI Community Radio News at 6 on Wednesday May 20. She spoke with WRFI News Director Michayla Savitt about how her campaign had adapted in the midst of social distancing, and discusses the need for…

Jordan Lesser of Tompkins County returns to WRFI to further discuss his campaign for 125th Assembly District [AUDIO]

By Michayla Savitt | May 19, 2020

Jordan Lesser, long term legislative counsel to Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton, called in to WRFI Community Radio News at 6 on Tuesday May 19. He spoke with WRFI News Director Michayla Savitt about how his campaign had adapted in the midst of social distancing, his proposed economic development initiatives amid the pandemic, and key issues on…

In the New York State Senate

Tom O’Mara is up for reelection once again in New York’s 58th senate district, which spans Penn Yan to Watkins Glen, Hornell, Bath, Corning, Elmira, and Ithaca. He has held the seat since 2010.

So far, Leslie Danks Burke of Tompkins County is the sole Democrat to challenge O’Mara.

Leslie Danks Burke discusses her candidacy for New York’s 58th State Senate District [AUDIO]

By Michayla Savitt | April 3, 2020

Leslie Danks Burke joins News Director Michayla Savitt by telephone for an on-air interview in the WRFI studios. She is a local attorney and a Democratic candidate for New York’s 58 Senate District which includes Schuyler, Yates, and Steuben Counties and part of Tompkins.    

In New York’s 23rd Congressional District

Representative Tom Reed, a Republican, is once again in the running for his position. Since 2012, he’s held the congressional seat in the 23rd district, which spans the southwestern portion of the state including Tompkins and Schuyler Counties.

Running against Tom Reed this year is Tracy Mitrano of Yates County who was a candidate in the 2018 race to represent New York’s 23rd Congressional district. She won the democratic nomination, but lost to Reed, claiming 45.8 percent of the vote according to ballotpedia.org.  

Dr. Scott Noren of Tompkins County was also in the race for the Democratic nomination but was disqualified since he didn’t reach the minimum 375 signatures needed on the petition. In 2012 and 2018 Noren unsuccessfully ran against New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand.

NY 23rd Congressional (latest stories)

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Congressman Tom Reed Introduces Energy Tax Credit bill – Jan. 2020

By Fred Balfour | January 18, 2020

Congressman Tom Reed recently announced a new bill which will use energy tax credits to address climate change. WRFI News Contributor Fred Balfour has more on the story  

Congressman Tom Reed – Town Halls: February 2019 (Audio)

By Fred Balfour | February 25, 2019

Congressman Tom Reed (NY 23rd District) has started holding more frequent town halls around the district since his serious challenge three months ago from Tracy Mitrano of Penn Yann. On Saturday February 23, 2019, he met with about 50 attendees in Owego (Tioga County) and 60 attendees in Groton (Tompkins County). Attendees raised 14 major…