112th ASSEMBLY DISTRICT -- Republican state Assemblywoman Mary Beth Walsh had no opposition the last time she ran for her seat, in 2018.
But it looks like she'll have an opponent in 2020, as progressive political activist Joe Seeman of Milton is preparing to announce a run for the 112th District seat, which represents several towns in southern and western Saratoga County and the town of Glenville in Schenectady County.
While Seeman has slated a press conference for noon Monday in Ballston Spa to announce his plans, he has been exploring a candidacy for several months, and confirmed on Dec. 31 that be will run.
"I've been an activist but I've never been a candidate before," he said. "I'm not an official candidate until Monday."
Seeman, 59, is a retired software developer for New York state. But going back to high school in Brooklyn, he said he has been active in progressive movements for clean energy, against nuclear power, against war and for fair trade. "It's many causes but really just one movement," he said.
A member of the Working Families Party, Seeman said he plans to pursue the Working Families and Democrat party lines for the November 2020 election.
Seeman has been among the organizers of regular progressive protests outside the Glens Falls regional office of 21st Congressional District Congresswoman Elise Stefanik, R-Schuylerville, who boosted her national profile with her spirited defense of President Donald Trump during the House Intelligence Committee impeachment hearings in November.
On Facebook, Seeman's campaign says he will be "Fighting for the 99% Joe Seeman will fight for: Our Children's Future Our Upstate NY communities Joe is not corrupted by the money of Billionaires and Corporations. Do you think the people of Saratoga & Schenectady counties should have a voice in NY government, equal to all NYers? Joe is running to be the People's Voice."
Seeman is married, with four children and two grandchildren.
Walsh, of Ballston, is an attorney and former member of the Ballston Town Board. She ran for the Assembly seat in 2016, after then-assemblyman James Tedisco decided to run for the state Senate. She defeated Democrat Michael Godlewski of Glenville in that year's election, and had no opponent in her 2018 re-election bid.
Walsh's husband, attorney James Walsh, was elected a state Supreme Court judge this past November, and will take office as of Jan. 1.
Walsh said she had heard Seeman might challenge her, and welcomes the challenge. She said she expects to pursue the Republican, Conservative and Independence party ballot lines.
"That's what the process is all about," she said. "I'm excited to defend my record and get out and meet with people. There's a lot I think I can be pretty proud of in terms of representing the interests of the district. It should be interesting. It will be hard to find someone more different from me than he is."
In addition to Glenville, the 112th district represents the Saratoga County towns of Halfmoon, Clifton Park, Ballston, Charlton, Galway, Milton, Greenfield and Providence. By enrollment, it is heavily weighted toward Republicans. The district has 38,210 registered Republicans and also 29,452 registered Democrats, as well as 26,996 active voters who are not registered in any political party, according to the most recent state Board of Elections figures.