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. JerryD

    How do you spell desperation? " R-E-P-U-B-:L-I-C-A-N

    April 15, 2009 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  2. Harry

    Republicans way or the highway....How sad?

    April 15, 2009 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  3. Stephen

    Another action validating the reasons I dropped of of the GOP 5 years ago.

    April 15, 2009 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  4. John

    What is really sad about the GOP is there was a time when they tried something as obviously ridiculous as this, many in their own party would admit or condemn it. Now they defend and argue about everything, no matter how blatant or serious the crime. There is always an excuse before any accountability. "But Clinton did it" should be carved on their tombstone.

    April 15, 2009 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  5. KEN

    This is nothing new – They both play the same game.

    April 15, 2009 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  6. Rick (California)

    I don't see what the issue is. Anyone should be able to cast an absentee ballot, no matter where they are on election day. This is just silly.

    Hey GOP, quit screwing around and get to work killing that welfare increase the socialists are calling a stimulus package.


    April 15, 2009 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  7. S Callahan

    Come on Kristin...you should have just gone to the booth....don't discredit yourself....you have always had the admiration of both parties...best to listen much and keep quite for awhile.

    April 15, 2009 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  8. John, from SC

    Minn. Senate and now the NY House... will they just not realize that they lost some seats. Maybe if they realize this they may be able to regain some of their lost affluence. If they don't, however, they may become the party of yesterday, much like the Whigs.

    April 15, 2009 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  9. Marty

    The sooner we get rid of the GOP, the better it is for America.
    Too much home grown extremism / terrorism.

    April 15, 2009 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  10. Barriett

    Sounds like more tit-for-tat politics that happens everyday and on every level in government ..... big deal.

    What's going to be funny is all the sanctimonious democratics that will come out of the wood-work to claim how thier party would never do such a thing.

    I already see some here, didn't take long.

    April 15, 2009 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  11. Corbett

    Ok semantically she is correct, it is a "new" move and it is "low." But I'm not sure if this particular play reaches any new "depth" for a party that has trouble convincing people that it's not owned by Rush Limbaugh.

    April 15, 2009 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  12. Mr. Thompson

    Ah, I love the ACORN whiners. These people have turned something they don't even have a basic understanding of into their chief boogeyman. First, ACORN didn't do the duping – it got duped by dishonest workers who made up a bunch of fake names to cheat ACORN, and ACORN reported it. Second, it's not as if these fake names – Mickey Mouse, etc. – were actually going to be *voting.* They didn't cast votes, so they didn't affect any election. And ACORN is a pretty small group, anyway.

    If you conservatives want to make this into your major conspiracy, go ahead, but you look silly and you destroy your credibility with this foolishness.

    April 15, 2009 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  13. Troy

    wow, this gonna be dragged out like MN?

    How can we take democracy to Iraq then?

    April 15, 2009 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  14. Sam Sixpack

    Egad! Follow the law? What will these sinister weasels dream up next?

    April 15, 2009 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  15. mark

    The new dem. motto: Don't ask what you can do for yourself ask what the goverment can do for you.

    April 15, 2009 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  16. Trent

    Glad to see Republicans focusing on important issues relevant to our nation's problems.

    April 15, 2009 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  17. Marc M

    It's not a new low at all. It's called fighting for justice to try to stop elections from being stolen by liberal biased activist court systems who rule whatever way helps the liberal party.

    How any democrat can actually say this when their history is filled with instances of this. How do you think Obama won office in Chicago?

    Hypocrisy as always from the left.

    April 15, 2009 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  18. g

    you remember Exxon Mobil CEO going out with 160 Million when the co. made record Profits in first quarter. Remember Haliburton and Co.

    I say, enough. Our media has become corrupt too and all what they are amplifying are republicans talking points. Kinda tired with politics!

    April 15, 2009 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  19. Johny

    John said:

    "What is really sad about the GOP is there was a time when they tried something as obviously ridiculous as this, many in their own party would admit or condemn it. Now they defend and argue about everything, no matter how blatant or serious the crime. There is always an excuse before any accountability. "But Clinton did it" should be carved on their tombstone."

    This logic works both ways, John. The liberals are continuing to blame Bush for EVERYTHING that is wrong with America. "But Bush did it" should be carved on the liberal's tombstones.

    April 15, 2009 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  20. Minnesotan

    The ol' meme that liberals and democrats are just lazy and live off of the GOP's tax dollars is getting old. That is sooooo 80's. Come up wityh a more original way to try and condesend to Dems please. For one, its not even factual, but for the most part... unless your rich or not very well educated and living in one of our poverty stricken Red States (as most of them are in the "worst" category for most of these statistics) you just aren't going to vote for the GOP.

    So the wealthiest amongst us and the non-thinking class of people in our midst seem to swing towards the GOP. And the rich folks know this so they play these morons for everything they can get out of them. Heck, they got them out in droves today protesting taxes. The folks out doing their teabag protest are the morons that don't even realize they're gettin' played by these greedy rich fools who won't even bother to show up.

    April 15, 2009 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  21. zgomer

    The libs always want to blow things out of proportion, nothing else. This isn't even news!

    April 15, 2009 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  22. Eleanor

    Big surprise! There is NO LOW to which the GOP will not sink! None!! Why should ANYONE, least of all an experienced Senator, should be surprised by this??

    Dirty tricks are in their nature...their stock in trade...and incidentally part of the reason they no longer hold the majority of government in their slimy hands!

    April 15, 2009 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  23. Dyan

    How did she find out that her ballot had been challenged? This touches on one of the things that has angered me the most since Florida 2000 - it's the GOP tatic of coming in after an election and without any notice to the voter being affected, challenge their ballot. It's chilling to the bone to realize that any of us could cast our ballot on election day, believe our vote counted and have that vote tossed out without our knowledge.

    April 15, 2009 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  24. Larry

    Democrats don't follow the Constitution or the" Law-"--but they want protection if it serves their agenda-Hypocrites,so what else is new.

    April 15, 2009 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  25. New York Chicagoan

    Chi Town lied and said:
    "This is exactly how Bammer got elected to the Senate. He took the ballots to court and won without a contest."

    Ummm...Obama was ELECTED to the Illinois Senate. with 70% of the vote. There was no court contest of the results. But why ket facts get in the way.

    April 15, 2009 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
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