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Candidates Emerge To Become New County Exec After Pat Ryan's Congressional Swing-District Win

Jennifer Metzger, Marc Rider, and March Gallagher
Jennifer Metzger, Marc Rider, and March Gallagher Photo Credit: New York Senate/Marc Rider, March Gallagher on Facebook

Now that Democrat Pat Ryan has won the special election for New York’s open 19th House seat, the jockeying has begun to fill his vacant Ulster County executive position.

Three names, all Democrats, have emerged so far.

They include March Gallagher, the current Ulster County comptroller, Jennifer Metzger, a former state senator, and Marc Rider, the deputy county executive.

Gallagher, who served as president and CEO of the Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley, announced her interest in a Facebook post Wednesday, Aug. 24.

Among her priorities, she said, are jobs and creating “a healthy economy for all.” She also touted the importance of preparing for future emergencies and ensuring that “everyone has a good place to live.”

“If you like the work I’ve done as comptroller, just imagine what I can do upstairs,” Gallagher said.

Metzger previously represented the 42nd District in the state Senate from 2019 to 2020, where she was an active member on the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, signed into law in July 2019.

She was also a vocal proponent of moving away from reliance on fossil fuels and addressing inequalities when it comes to broadband internet access.

Metzger announced her run on Twitter, saying she would seek to create a “sustainable, resilient, people-centered economy that leaves no one behind.”

“But we can only get there if we have the right vision and leadership to build on Pat Ryan’s accomplishments, Metzger said.

Rider outlined three priorities should he nab the position: "Affordability, expanding mental health and addiction services, and fighting for the survival of our planet. 

He previously ran for the position in 2019 before dropping out and backing Ryan's campaign.

The Democratic party will convene a special convention to select its candidate.

No Republicans had announced interest in the position as of Thursday, Aug. 25. 

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