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What you need to know for 07/23/2017

Political neophyte ready to take on Tedisco

Political neophyte ready to take on Tedisco

A young attorney with no political experience has been tapped to run for Assembly against an entrenc
Political neophyte ready to take on Tedisco
Jared Hickey, right, a deputy attorney for Schenectady County with no political experience, is mounting a campaign to challenge longtime local Assemblyman Jim Tedisco.

A young attorney with no political experience has been tapped to run for Assembly against an entrenched Republican first elected in 1982.

With no fanfare or press release, the Scotia-Glenville Democratic Committee endorsed Jared Hickey, a Glenville resident who works as a deputy attorney for Schenectady County, to run against Assemblyman Jim Tedisco of Glenville in the race for the 112th District seat.

Hickey will face an uphill battle against the popular Tedisco in the largely Republican district, which includes the town of Glenville in Schenectady County and most of Saratoga County.

Committee members have started circulating petitions for Hickey, who needs 500 signatures by July 10 to be placed on the ballot for the November election.

“Clearly it’s a difficult race because the political geography is very Republican, but Jared Hickey is a change agent,” said Brian Quail, Schenectady County Democratic Committee chairman, “and we’re hopeful that this election will manifest itself as a change year for the way Albany operates. He is someone who is very aware of the issues that face working families and is committed to bringing reform to Albany.”

Hickey, 33, lives with his wife and 3-month-old son.

“I worked in the Senate after college as an unpaid intern, and my heart’s been in it since as long as I can remember,” he said.

“So when asked, I said yes as quickly as possible.”

As a first-time candidate, Hickey said he would bring a fresh perspective to Albany that his opponent lacks.

Hickey said entrenched candidates such as Tedisco are the source of Albany’s stagnation.

“And so I’m trying to challenge him and bring some new ideas to Albany,” he said.

Tedisco said he welcomes Hickey in the race.

“This is what democracy is all about,” he said. “I always run on my record.”

But he rebuked Hickey’s claim that he has contributed to the stagnation.

“I would ask Jared if that’s kind of an ageism or a prejudice, or a discrimination, against somebody who’s got experience and has a proven record of standing up in opposition to that stagnation,” he said.

For example, Tedisco said, he sponsored a constitutional amendment to make the state Legislature go digital with bills, a move that could save taxpayers $53 million a year.

The legislation made it through the Democrat-led Assembly and will be on the ballot in November.

“It’s been the character, the content and the quality of my ideas and the ability to market them and get my constituents behind them that have made me successful, to get things done against very difficult odds,” he said.

“I don’t think that’s a good platform to run on: I’ve got no experience, somebody else has a lot of it.”

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