Clinton rides wave of popularity to local victory

U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton, a Democrat, has always been sweet on Schenectady County, making frequent
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U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton, a Democrat, has always been sweet on Schenectady County, making frequent visits here and directing millions in federal dollars to the community.

So it was only fitting county Democrats would return the favor Tuesday night. They turned out for the Super Tuesday primary in sufficient numbers to give the junior senator from New York a strong win over her chief Democratic rival for president, U.S. Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois.

Unofficial tallies in Schenectady County gave Clinton a nearly 2-1 lead in votes cast in 128 election districts.

Democrats, who watched primary results from the Ancient Order of Hibernians Hall on State Street, knew she would win the county as well as New York.

Primary results

For local results from Tuesday’s Democratic and Republican presidential primaries, click here.

“She’s been here so much that people know her and think of her as family,” said Richard Naylor, chairman of the city of Schenectady Democratic Committee.

Local politicians from Mayor Brian U. Stratton to Susan Savage, chairwoman of the Schenectady County Legislature, worked hard on her behalf. Stratton, who was not at the Hibernian Club, was selected as an alternate delegate to the National Democratic Convention for Clinton.

Theresa Cassiack, who works as communications director for the Democrat-controlled county Legislature, coordinated the local Clinton campaign effort.

“We had about 30 local people making phone calls, dropping literature and putting up signs for Clinton,” Cassiack said. “We put enough effort into it to think she would win.”

In Albany County, Clinton also carried a nearly 2-to-1 lead.

There was no organized campaign effort for Obama in Schenectady County, said Corey Ellis, an Albany city councilman and coordinator of the Obama campaign in Albany County.

“There are a few people out there doing some things, but there is not an active office or organization and it stands to reason Hillary will win in Schenectady County,” Ellis said.

As with Schenectady County, the major politicians in Albany County supported Clinton.

Ellis said his group, The Coalition to Save Albany, formed two weeks ago to give people in the Capital Region a place to go to support Obama. The group has 30 members.

Ellis said he expects the coalition to remain in place after the primary, in order to “give people a voice in government.”

Clinton won Montgomery, Fulton, Schoharie and Saratoga counties.

Categories: Schenectady County

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