The newest members of New York’s congressional delegation have officially taken their seats in Congress.
Democrat Pat Ryan (Hudson Valley/Catskills) and Republican Joe Sempolinski (Southern Tier/Finger Lakes) were sworn in by Speaker Nancy Pelosi at the Capitol Tuesday, Sept. 13, following their wins in special elections in August 2022.
Speaking on the House floor, Ryan, the former Ulster County executive representing the 19th District, recognized what he called a “moment of immense consequence and challenge” for the country before vowing to “fight every single day” for his constituents.
He posted a tweet showing him standing in front of the Capitol building with the caption, “Reporting for duty.”
The 19th District is in the Catskills and mid-Hudson Valley regions and includes Ulster and Dutchess counties.
The district was carried by President Joe Biden by fewer than two percentage points in 2020. In 2016, Donald Trump won the district in the presidential election against Hillary Clinton
Ryan was elected to finish out former Rep. Antonio Delgado’s (D) term after Delgado accepted the lieutenant governor position.
Sempolinski will represent New York’s 23rd District after former Rep. Tom Reed (R) resigned in May 2022 following accusations of sexual misconduct by a lobbyist.
“Over the last few months I’ve been repeatedly asked ‘why would you run when you’d only serve for four months?’ My answer has been, ‘it would be an honor to serve for four minutes,’” he said on the House floor.
In a tweet posted the same day, Sempolinski described his new role as an “honor of a lifetime to represent the people of the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes."
Ryan and Sempolinski both participated in ceremonial photo ops with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi after being sworn in.
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