April 15th, 2009
02:56 PM ET
12 years ago

Gillibrand: GOP stooping to 'new low' over ballot challenge

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/04/15/art.gillibrand.gi.jpg caption="Gillibrand said the GOP is stooping to a 'new low.'"](CNN) - New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand accused Republicans of stooping to a "new low" Wednesday amid reports GOP lawyers have challenged her ballot in the election to name her successor in the state's 20th congressional district.

"Their latest move to challenge my ballot is part of a much larger attempt to disenfranchise legal Democratic voters and delay Scott Murphy's inevitable victory in the 20th," she said in a op-ed on the Huffington Post.

The Albany Times Union first reported on Tuesday lawyers for Republican Jim Tedisco objected to Gillibrand's absentee ballot because the senator was in the district on Election Day.

Thousands of absentee ballots remain to be counted in the special election called to fill the congressional seat vacated by Gillibrand when she was appointed to the Senate. As of Tuesday, Tedisco trails by just under 50 votes.

A spokeswoman for Gillibrand said the senator requested an absentee ballot because she did not expect to be able to vote at her polling location because Senate votes were scheduled that day.

"The Republican's challenge is frivolous and without merit," said Gillibrand spokeswoman Bethany Lesser in a statement to CNN.

Lesser also noted New York state law allows a voter to request an absentee ballot if he or she has an expectation to be absent on Election Day. State law further says a voter must intend to be outside of their home county on election day, not the congressional district as a whole. Though Gillibrand was in the 20th congressional district on the evening of Election Day, she did not enter her home county, Lesser said.

Lawyers for Tedisco have not returned CNN's request for comment.

Filed under: Kirsten Gillibrand
soundoff (291 Responses)
  1. Scott

    Republicans need to feel useful again. Maybe we should send them all to Somalia to fight pirates.

    April 15, 2009 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  2. wmcauth07

    Considering all the practice the Greedy Ole Party of "No" developed in whining over the defeat of Coleman in MN, surely this should come as no surprise. Nor will it be surprisng when they lose both challenges.
    Walt, Beecher, ILL-Annoy, home of 2 indicted, 1 [soon to be 2]imprisoned ex-govs

    April 15, 2009 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  3. chicago Livin'

    This is not even close to how Barack got elected...wow, you people need to learn some stuff before you type it. Man the G.O.P. will stop at nothing...You lost, it sucks, us Dems know all too well. But if you keep whining about the current government, clearly you hate America, at least that's what you told us when you were in power.

    April 15, 2009 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  4. dan in NJ

    pot...kettle....black. If I bought stock in liberal whining, I would be the richest man in the world.

    April 15, 2009 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  5. Roofin Reality, Houston, Tx.

    Just finished visiting with a friend about my friends on the right.
    The Values eventually caught up to them in the names of Mark Foley, Sen. Craig and the NY Congressman who was arrested on drunk driving – coming from his mistress' home with whom he had a child. And he was married with children himself.

    Now, you see the challenge of votes – in Ohio Presidential race by trying to eliminate eligibility for some voters, in Minnesota where even the National Review says give it up but the Reps won't, and now in this situation in NY.

    The public started to turn its back when they saw thru the "values" the Reps offered up but didn't always show to be living by. Now, with these challenges, it makes it even harder to get public support and sentiment.

    So, I say to my rep friends – if you want to continue losing elections, continue doing what you're doing.

    April 15, 2009 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  6. Hispanic in Dallas, TX

    Please, this isn't anything that Dems haven't done or wouldn't do; pot calling the kettle black; it's just another way for Dems to distract people.

    Get over yourself!

    April 15, 2009 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  7. 30m-Democrat-voted Clinton then McCain

    Where's ACORN?

    April 15, 2009 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  8. Real Change

    Same thing we're seeing in Minnesota.
    – Stall
    – Obstruct
    – Delay

    This from the same people who didn't want the votes recounted in Florida 2000.

    April 15, 2009 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  9. Ken, Centreville, VA

    Only one word sums it up: Weird.

    April 15, 2009 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  10. Michael (Nashville,TN)

    Hey GOP,

    If you want to win elections, try running candidates with positions in the political mainstream instead of the far right lunatic fringe.

    April 15, 2009 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  11. Steve K

    Unfortunately, every new day brings another new low for the GOP. They are a collective embarrassment to the country.

    April 15, 2009 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  12. rand

    I don't know N.Y. voting laws but everywhere I have lived there is the right to vote absentee no matter where the hell you are. Many of us do travel for work and don't know where we'll be on election day.

    It seems to me the GOP needs to regroup. Just what is a Republican anymore? It certainly has nothing to do with conservatism.

    April 15, 2009 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  13. Fred the Moderate

    This GOP stuff just makes you sick. Minnisota is a great example. There really does come a time to walk away and do something else ( if you even can?). If you notice, these were republican districts before but due to their tactics and spewed hate they are being rejected.

    The American people don't want a party of "NO" around anymore. The young people don't buy the lies, can see through the thin Spin of hate and the things that use to fule the GOP hate machines – they reject because it doesn't bother them!

    Take a hint from the last 2 elections, we don't want the lies or hate anymore!

    April 15, 2009 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  14. Joe in Austin

    No, this is pretty much the same old 'low' that republicans stoop to. Lying, cheating, stealing, it's all the same to them.

    April 15, 2009 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  15. jake

    a democrat involved in voting irregularity...no way

    April 15, 2009 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  16. Dan

    Barack Obama challenged several thousand hastily gathered signatures on several petitions generated by a few of his opponents in Chicago election. Anyone would have done the same thing in his shoes. Here, though the Repubs are being petty as usual.

    April 15, 2009 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  17. Southern Gentlemen

    By the silly actions of the right wing, Rush Limbaugh, Dick Cheney, Sarah Palin, Tea Partiies, complaininng about taxes (the wealthy has had it made for the past 8 years, dont ya think its the Middle class's turn?) By the looks of things, I dont even see the GOP existing in the future. Keep it up Right Wingers! Your actions and ignorance will lead you to your Destruction.

    April 15, 2009 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  18. RNC = DNC = politics as usual

    After all the lying and cheating during elections from both DNC and RNC, I have a great idea:

    Let the DNC and RNC cheat on each other then both go into court and run media stories. MENAWHILE, let's all quietly start getting third party candidates into office for a real change.

    Question Authority.

    April 15, 2009 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  19. Parnell Meagre

    How does she know Murphy's victory is inevitable? Politicians say the dumbest stuff.

    I live in the district and felt somewhat abused by the electoral process. We must have got 40 pieces of campaign literature from Murphy who's strategy was to tie himself to President Obama and to depict Tedisco as obstructionist. Fair enough – if he gets to congress I'm sure that's what Tedisco will do. My complaint with the campaign was that for all the literature no compelling case was made for Murphy He seemed like a rich guy playing in politics. I voted for him on the Working Family line because I believe Obama is best for the country. If they had either made a more compelling case for Murphy or picked a better candidtate this race shouldn't have been close. Even in Conservative Dutchess county.

    April 15, 2009 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  20. Vic

    WBN April 15th, 2009 11:23 am ET

    A "challenge" is a right, a tactic, an attempt–duh, kinda like Al Franken did (to his own advantage)! Liber als are such whiners. And the liberal media just keeps on taking sides.

    Once again another uninformed member of the party of NO! Franken never challenged the election results, the state of Minnesota did. If you all would just turn the channel to the so called media news, and stop listening to the talking heads on the right, you might just learn something. Here's an idea READ...it is fundamental!

    April 15, 2009 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  21. CitizenAJ

    Wow! The republicans, the self proclaimed party of righteousness, are really showing their TRUE colors now-a-days. The whole Al Franken thing is ridiculous. He has more votes, the courts have ruled that he is the victor, yet, the republicans keep pushing the issue. They look like very sore loosers and childish. Keep it up republican party. You are in a decline, you further it by these foolish acts like the dumb tax tea parties you planned for today. How moronic.

    April 15, 2009 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  22. Di

    If NYS law says that she can submit an absentee ballot if she belives that she will be out of the county, then her ballot is legal. End of story. Enough with the BS and stalling.

    April 15, 2009 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  23. Marty, FL

    Similar to the MN race, Republicans are desperately stooping to new lows to manipulate the election process when they do not like the outcomes. Absentee ballots are legal, and all votes should be counted, including Senator Gillibrand's.

    April 15, 2009 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  24. jake

    with each new day, the GOP stoops to a new low...

    April 15, 2009 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  25. Fitz in Texas

    Just got to feel sorry for those Democrats.

    They sure can dish it out, but sure can't take it. Poor things.

    April 15, 2009 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
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