Janet Burman announces state Senate bid for 53rd seat
It was chilly on James Street June 14 when Janet Burman made an announcement on her front porch, while children cavorted across the street in the Lincoln School yard, careening off each other in body-length balloons. She was going to contend for the 53rd state Senate seat, she said, handing out red, white and blue cookies and personalized campaign pens. Everyone stood for the Pledge of Allegiance.
The three dozen gathered on the lawn included an all-star lineup of Central New York Republican Party heavies, such as town of Salina GOP chair John Niestemski, Salina Town Supervisor Mark Nicotra and former Syracuse mayoral candidate Steve Kimatian.
The 53rd contains all of Madison County, most of the city of Syracuse, western Oneida County and the towns of Tully, LaFayette, Fabius, Pompey, Salina and Cicero. Registered Democrats outnumber Republicans in the district by 40 percent to 28 percent, with 24 percent non-enrolled.
The seat is currently occupied by Democrat David Valesky, who has kept it without opposition for the past three two-year terms. “I’ve had 14 years and I am anxious to continue,” he said. Valesky reflected on his tenure in the state Senate, assessing Burman’s candidacy as less than an immediate threat. Both cite three issues as major concerns for the district: economic development, funding for education and urban poverty.
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