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Assistant D.A. to run for Congress

Fed up with the dysfunction in Washington and eager to do something about it, Saratoga County Assistant District Attorney David Harper resigned from his post of 22 years on Tuesday, Feb. 16, and announced his plans to enter the race for the 20th congressional district on the Republican platform. The seat is currently held by Democrat Scott Murphy.

"I saw the record deficits this Congress and administration are racking up and our children are going to have to pay, and also the way the interrogation was bungled of the Christmas Day bomber [Umar Abdulmutallab]; this is something I've been thinking about for awhile," said Harper.

He said he'd like to see the government get its spending back under control, lower taxes and halt what he sees as attempts of the federal government to take over many aspects of [our] lives. The fact that he's been a familiar face in Saratoga County for 27 years, as putting the odds in his favor.

"I've been a small business owner and small town lawyer for 27 years. I've had the privilege of doing thousands and thousands of house closings, writing wills, helping workers through the maze of worker's compensation, so I think I really understand the struggles that people face on a day to day basis," said Harper, who just filed paperwork with the Federal Election Commission and opened a campaign bank account.

In the coming weeks, all 10 counties in the 20th district will call a meeting of their committee members, which candidates will attend and present their cases for running, said Harper. On Wednesday, March 31, the counties will make their final vote and select which candidate to endorse.

"It's a very fast and compressed phase of the campaign and I think my chances are very good, especially because Saratoga County contributes one-third of the votes in this district," said Harper. "I think I have a distinct presence here."

Harper said he grew up in Troy from about seventh grade on and attended public schools, making many friends that he said still remain intact; he said he's confident this support in Rensselaer will benefit him as well.

While Harper said District Attorney Jim Murphy cannot publicly endorse a candidate under the code of ethics, they've been good friends and colleagues and he was very supportive and encouraging with Harper's decision.

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