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Albany County GOP changing guard

Albany County GOP Chairman Peter Kermani announced that he would not be running for re-election this November.

The announcement was made at a meeting of the Executive Committee of the Albany County Republican Committee on Wednesday, July 23. Kermani has been in office as chairman since 1999, when he replaced Fred Field.

Kermani's successor will be Albany County Elections Commissioner John Graziano, of Colonie, as voted by the GOP Executive Committee.

I am confident John's ability and commitment to the basic fundamentals of the Republican Party will move us forward and get the job done now better than ever, Kermani said in a written statement.

"It is simply time for a change. I am proud of the accomplishments we as a party have achieved over the past nine years," said Kermani. "I chose to step away now because I feel that it is in the best interest of the party to provide my replacement with enough time to prepare for the 2008 and 2009 election seasons."

Kermani said he fought for Republican values and even helped former Republican Gov. George E. Pataki win the state's top position.

"Not many party leaders can say that they played a part in keeping New York State Republican," Kermani said. "We must continue to pursue the basic Republican principles of core family values, lower taxes and smaller government."

Kermani said he pioneered fair districting and a more voter friendly, non-partisan, approach for the Albany County Board of Elections.

"During my nine years as chairman we never let the fact that we were outnumbered by the Democrats stop us from standing up for all the voters," he said.

Guilderland Town Councilman Mark Grimm called the selection of Graziano as the new Albany County Republican Chair a "positive step forward in the battle to bring Albany County residents a long overdue alternative to one-party rule."

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