News of Otsego County

Serving Otsego County, NY, through the combined reporting of Cooperstown's Freeman's Journal and the Hometown Oneonta newspapers.


Aimee Swan

Will Impeachment Vote Since Delgado’s Future?

Will Impeachment Vote

Since Delgado’s Future?

GOP: Freshman Voted Against Constituents;

Democrats: He Was Following His Conscience

By JIM KEVLIN • Special To

Antonio Delgado in Oneonta recently. (James Cummings/AllOTSEGO.con)

COOPERSTOWN – Impeachment is part of the issue.

The other part is: By voting for President Trump’s impeachment, is freshman Congressman Anthony Delgado, D-19, endangering his chances of reelection?

Yes, said Otsego County Republican Chairman Vince Casale: “He’s going against the majority of the will of his constituents, against how they voted in 2016.”

Regardless, Delgado had to do what he believes, said Otsego County Democratic Chairman Aimee Swan: “Regarding impeachment, we think that Congressman Delgado is doing a great job communicating his reasoning to the voters and we believe that he will continue to have the kind of broad support that got him elected.”

The U.S. House of Representatives was scheduled to vote Wednesday, Dec. 18 – this edition went to press the night before – on two articles of impeachment against Trump, and Delgado announced Sunday the 15th that he would vote for both articles.

His colleague to the north, U.S. Rep. Anthony Brindisi of Utica, D-22, reached the same conclusion, but it was a tougher one:  In 2018, He had very narrowly beaten the incumbent, Republican Claudia Tenney, 50.9 percent to 49.1 percent, and she’s challenging him in 2020.

Delgado has a little more breathing space: He beat incumbent Republican John Faso by a lesser margin, 50.4 percent, but Faso’s margin was winnowed to 46.2 percent by Green and Independent candidates also running in the 19th.

So far, Delgado is facing a Republican challenge from Maj. Gen. (ret.) Tony German of Oneonta, former commander of the state National Guard.  And perhaps a more formidable one: Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro, who ran for governor last year.  Casale said to expect news about formidable entries “after the first of the year.”

Hartwick College Poly-Sci Professor Laurel Elder agreed with Casale and Swan’s formulations, summing it up as follows: “We know it’s a very divided district; there’s no way he can please everybody.”

Harkening back to 2018, however, she recalled that several Democrats in the Congressional primary were significantly to the left of Delgado.  If he hadn’t stepped forward on impeachment, he might have provoked a primary next June.

“There’s energy in the wings of the party,” she observed.

Regardless, Delgado (and Brindisi) fall into a category that is generating a lot of interest: Democratic congressmen elected in 2018 to districts – some, like the 19th, are being called “purple districts” – that supported Trump over Democrat Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Trump won the 19th by 6.8 percentile points, to Delgado’s 4.2.  (In Otsego County, Trump’s margin was greater, 51.85 percent to Clinton’s 40.72 percent, or 11.13 percentile points.  In 2018, Delgado won 48.97 percent of Otsego’s votes; Faso, 48.47 percent, or 0.5 percentile points.)

Since, statistically, members of Congress are most vulnerable when running for reelection after one term, a counter-sweep next November could put Congress back in Republicans hands just in time for the 2021 reapportionment that will follow the 2020 Census.

An indication of that significance: Both national newspapers, The New York Times and Wall Street Journal, had reporters shadowing Delgado the week leading up to his announced he’ll support impeachment.

The Journal’s Natalie Andrews reported Delgado being greeted by “vote no on impeachment cries” and a single “yes on impeachment” cry on arriving at a Town Hall meeting in Highland, Ulster County. She spoke to voters similarly split on the congressman, although they all seemed to like him.

Echoing what Aimee Swan said, The Times’ Emily Cochrane said voting for impeachment “had made it all the more important for Mr. Delgado and Democrats like him to find ways to show voters they are getting  things done in Congress, which is why he is crisscrossing his district through flurries, working on local issues and connecting with constituents.”

And why Speaker Nancy Pelosi scheduled Wednesday’s impeachment vote between votes on muscular legislation, one to fund the government, the other on the new NAFTA.

Delgado’s job could depend on it; and Pelosi’s.

NYS Comptroller Urges Dems: ‘Remain Laser Focused’


‘Remain Laser Focused,’

DiNapoli Tells Democrats

State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli, who keynoted last evening’s county Democratic annual dinner, urged the party faithful to focus “laser-focused” on the presidential election in November 2020.  “My fear it that we will make the mistake again of looking for perfection,” he said, “and in the end it will hurt us … Reach outside your comfort zone of your support base and don’t just talk to people who agree with you.”   Above, DiNapoli chats with, from left, Oneonta Mayor Gary Herzig; Caitlin Ogden, who is running for county board in the Otego-Laurens district, and former Oneonta Mayor Kim Muller during the social hour at SUNY Oneonta’s Hunt Union Ballroom.  “Our county us poor: 25 percent of children in Otsego County live below the poverty line,” Herzig said in his welcome. “…We must remain focused on the concerns of the people we serve, because too many times those who elect us cannot meet their own basic needs.”  County Democratic Chairman Aimee Swan, inset, said local Democrats are on the march: “We are energized. Many of our meetings are standing room only. We are seeing record-breaking attendance.  Local Democrat turnout has doubled since we turned Faso out.”  Congressman John Faso lost the 19th District seat to Democrat Antonio Delgado last November.  (Ian Austin/

Democratic Candidates Kick Off Fall Campaign


Democratic Candidates

Kick Off Fall Campaign

To applause, Democratic County Chairman Aimee Swan, standing at center, introduces city, town and county candidates from across Otsego County seeking office in the Nov. 5 local elections at a kick-off rally now underway at the Beverage Exchange in downtown Coopertown.   (In the foreground are Oneonta Democrats Rick Pavlick, right, and Kate O’Donnell, left.)  At right, Jill Basile, county rep candidate from District 14, Oneonta, attending with husband Vinnie, acknowledges applause.  Inset at left is Brian Flynn, who won Otsego County in the 19th District Congressional Primary in 2018 (Antonio Delgado won the general election), who attended to rally his party’s grassroots. (Jim Kevlin/

County’s GOP Chairman Reacts: Mueller Report’s 5 p.m. Transmittal Suggests It Has ‘Little Information’


GOP Chair Skeptical;

Democrat Anticipates

Release Of Particulars

Vince Casale
Aimee Swan

The reactions of Otsego County’s top Republican and Democrat differed to the news Special Counsel Robert Mueller has completed his investigation of Russian involvement in the 2016 Presidential campaign and transmitted his finding to the Justice Department.

Given the news was not released until 5 p.m. on a Friday suggests it “contains little information the author wants people to know,” said county Republican Chairman Vince Casale, Cooperstown, when asked for his initial reaction to the news.

Benton, Stammel Voted Co-Chairs of Otsego Dems

Benton, Stammel Voted

Vice Chairs of Otsego Dems

The Otsego County Democratic Committee held their elections earlier tonight at Village Hall in Cooperstown. From left, Andrew Stammel and MacGuire Benton, co-Vice Chairs, Aimee Swan, Chair, Dick Breuninger, Secretary and William Elsey, Treasurer. (Contributed by Richard Sternberg)

COOPERSTOWN – MacGuire Benton, founder of the Otsego County Young Democrats, was elected to join County Representative Andrew Stammel as co-vice chairs of the Otsego County Democratic Committee meeting during their reorganization meeting this evening at Village Hall in Cooperstown.

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