September 11, 2002

Unexpected Results in Local Primary Race

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Last night’s primary results for the State Assembly’s democratic seat were unexpected, even to winner Barbara Lifton.

Lifton said that among her supporters, there was “a bit of surprise at how good the numbers [were].” She added that seeing the community’s support for her campaign was “deeply satisfying.”

Also running on the democratic platform were candidates Dan Lamb and Mike Lane.

Although defeated, Lamb was still proud of his campaign.

“We brought some policy ideas to the race that needed to be emphasized,” he said.

Lamb still looks forward to being “active in the community” through his work as the District Representative for current U.S. Representative, Maurice Hinchey.

“We ran a good campaign … we stuck to our plan,” said Dan Dimendberg, Lamb’s campaign manager, following last night’s results announcement.

“The results didn’t come out the way we planned,” Dimendberg said. “I have no regrets about the race we ran,” he added.

Mike Lane did not return phone calls for comment last night.

Supporter Reaction

Lifton spent part of last night in Cortland, and said her supporters there seemed very happy with the results. She is, however, “not taking anything for granted” as she heads into the general election on Nov. 5 against Republican Mike Sigler.

“We will continue to have to work hard for the next seven weeks,” Lifton said.

First Win

According to Lifton, although the last person to hold the State Assembly seat for the district was a Democrat, it was the first Democrat in 75 years to win.

“We’re going to have a vigorous campaign,” she said. “I have a strong opponent.”

In a press release last night, Sigler said, “Barbara Lifton worked hard and fought a clear primary, she deserved to win. We’re looking forward to a competitive and issue-oriented campaign and welcome the chance to bring our message of economic development, job growth, lower taxes and the best education system possible to the people in Tompkins and Cortland counties.”

The release also said that Sigler wrote a congratulatory letter to Lifton, in which he also challenged her to three debates before election day.

“I want to give voters every opportunity to see how our views differ on the issues that matter to the residents of this district,” Sigler said in the release.

The general election for the State Assembly seat will be held Nov. 5.

Archived article by Rachel Brenner