“(If) I didn’t intend to do this I wouldn’t have been to every part of this district every week meeting residents,” he said. “I had overwhelming support in this race. And if anyone knows me and my fundraising ability, they would know I could raise the funds to accomplish my mission.”
At the beginning of Wednesday’s meeting, County Legislator Bryan Clenahan also pulled his name from the list of potential candidates. Some believed after Commisso dropped out, former Albany School Board member Patricia Fahy would win the party’s endorsement. Before the meeting, Fahy herself even felt she had the committee’s backing.
“I thought there would be a vote, so I was surprised when there wasn’t,” she said. “This is new to me, so I didn’t know what to expect.”
Fahy said she now has the backing of those who were once behind Clehahan.
“I have a lot of support shifting my way,” she said. “I feel I’m on an upswing and grateful for any support I get. I want it and I need it.”
The newly drawn district lines mean the 109th Assembly District now includes the southwestern parts of the city of Albany and the towns of Guilderland, New Scotland and Bethlehem.
Besides Fahy, County Legislator Christopher Higgins has said he will seek the seat, along with state legislative aide Margarita Perez. Assistant Attorney General William McCarthy Jr. officially announced his own campaign on Tuesday, May 29.
"Our future is now," said McCarthy. "I will bring a fresh, independent perspective to the Assembly, and by working with Gov. Andrew Cuomo we can bring long-overdue and necessary change for New Yorkers."
Guilderland Supervisor Kenneth Runion’s name was also bandied about, but he has since been reported as saying he will not make a bid.
On the Republican side, Ted Danz of Guilderland and Joseph Sullivan, a member of the Conservative Party, have both announced intentions to run in the Democrat-heavy district.
Clyne said he believes the decision to not endorse a democratic candidate for the 109th district will affect the field and that even more people within the party may decide to run.
“Some who may have felt apprehensive of going through with the candidate review process and might not feel they had a shot, can now get into the game,” he said, adding head-to-head politics has a different dynamic from a large field. “We’ll see how this goes.”
Update: Frank Commisso Jr. officially launched his primary campaign for the 109th Assembly District on Thursday, May 31.