Seward wins re-election; others too close to call

Julie Lewis | The Daily Star State Sen. James L. Seward, right, looks at election results with his communications director, Jeff Bishop, as Duncan Davie, his chief of staff, and Seward's wife, Cindy, look on behind them Tuesday night in Seward's office on Dietz Street in Oneonta. At left, checking results on his phone is Josh Bailey, legislative assistant.

In the New York Senate, a new face will be going to Albany and a familiar face will return. 

Incumbent Sen. James Seward, R-Milford, won against Democratic challenger Joyce St. George * for the 51st District, with 62.42 percent of the vote and 63,003 votes. St. George * finished with 34.49 percent of the vote and 34,809 votes. 

By press time, Democratic candidate Jen Metzger, a Rosendale councilwoman, was ahead with 43,985 votes to the Republican candidate, Orange County Clerk Ann Rabbitt, with 41,216 votes in the 42nd District, which was left open after Republican John Bonacic retired in April. 

“I'm very gratified by the results and very thankful to the voters of the 51st District for their overwhelming show of support,” Seward said from his campaign headquarters in Oneonta after the race was called. He said there was a big crowd and the mood was festive.

Seward will be going into a Senate now under Democratic control, but he said that will not change what he is there to do. 

"All the years that I have been in the Senate, we have always had a split-politics situation, Democratic governor and Democratic Assembly, and I work very closely and collaboratively across the aisle," he said.

“I want to go back to the capital as a strong voice for our area and focus attention on our needs in this part of New York state,” Seward said. "We need to make the state a more affordable place to live and create more opportunities for people in upstate New York and our region." 

Going forward, Seward said he was ready to work on combating to the opioid epidemic and to continue fighting for the district.  

Whitney Bashaw, staff writer, can be reached at 607-441-7218 or wbashaw@thedailystar.com . Follow her on Twitter @DS_WhitneyB .

*Changed at 12:59 p.m. Nov. 7 to correct name of the challenger.

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Reporter covering agriculture and k-12 education in Central New York state.