SOURCE: Democrat & Chronicle.
CLEVELAND - With a new Quinnipiac University poll showing her 32 points behind Sen. Charles Schumer, Republican Wendy Long talked up her candidacy Tuesday to party leaders, donors and activists attending the Republican National Convention.
Long already has their endorsement, as well as the Conservative Party ballot line. But without campaign donations, volunteers and widespread public exposure, she faces certain defeat in November.
Schumer had $27.1 million in campaign cash last month. The $46,106 in Long’s account wouldn’t even finance a competitive congressional district race.
The July 13-17 Quinnipiac survey of 1,104 voters released Tuesday showed Schumer leading Long 60 percent to 28 percent. The margin of error was plus or minus 3 percentage points. It also found that 74 percent of New York voters don’t know enough about Long to have an opinion of her.
Meanwhile, Schumer has a statewide favorable-unfavorable rating of 57 percent to 25 percent. That’s not surprising, given his hard-earned reputation for consistently getting himself in headlines around the state.
The Schumer name even made the cover of Vogue magazine this month, although the story was about Schumer’s niece, actress and comedian Amy Schumer.
Long spoke Tuesday morning to a captive audience of several hundred New York delegates and guests attending the GOP convention, about 12 hours before delegates from all over the country were expected to vote to make Donald Trump their party’s presidential nominee.
“I am running for U.S. Senate for the same reason that Donald Trump is running for president,’’ Long said. “Our country is slipping away from us.’’
Sue Ann Fisher of Waterloo, a Republican guest, said Long’s lack of name recognition “can change quite dramatically as (she) gets out around the area. I think New Yorkers are ready for a change.’’
Long rejected theories that she’s running in order to get a job in a Trump administration or make money writing a book.
“I don’t want anything,” she said. “To me, this is a sacrifice.’’
The 55-year-old Manhattan attorney acknowledged citing similar motivations four years ago when she ran another underdog campaign against Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand.
Long lost that 2012 campaign in a landslide, capturing only 26 percent of the vote and ending up with $292,816 in campaign debts — more than double the amount she raised.
The surprise in that campaign was that she needed to beat two other Republicans a primary to earn the ballot line.
This campaign cycle, state Republican leaders failed to persuade elected officials to enter the race. They turned to Long after she had already received the endorsement of the Conservative Party.
Trump’s unconventional presidential campaign this election cycle — as well as overall voter unrest —may offer the possibility that Long can rise from obscurity as November approaches.
“I think it’s a great year to run and it’s a long way to November,’’ said New York convention delegate and Albany County Republican Chairwoman Christine Benedict.
The new Quinnipiac poll shows Trump behind Clinton in New York by only 12 percentage points.
Chris Arnold of Yorktown said Trump’s new poll numbers in New York might be a good sign for Long’s Senate race.
“I don’t think there ever is such a thing as a sacrificial lamb,’’ Arnold said. “It could be close, absolutely, and I hope it is.’’
Long told the delegates that the wave of support Trump is getting could help her candidacy in this blue state.
“Our government is corrupt,’’ she said.
Long also plans to use Schumer’s own mythologizing against him.
In his 2007 book, Positively American: Winning Back the Middle-Class Majority One Family at a Time,’ Schumer said he used an imaginary Long Island couple — Joe and Eileen Bailey — as a benchmark to judge policy issues.
Ten years later, Long said, “The Baileys are now my friends and I have checked with them and they are not doing well.’’
View Full Article as seen on Democrat & Chronicle.