Despite loss, Duffy continues run for Assembly

Published: Jun. 30, 2022 at 4:04 PM EDT
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WATERTOWN, New York (WWNY) - The race for the 116th state Assembly District seat isn’t over yet.

Despite losing the Republican primary Tuesday night, St. Lawrence County businesswoman Susan Duffy said Thursday she plans to continue her run.

Because Duffy has the Conservative Party line, her name will appear on the ballot in November.

“My intention is to continue to get out in front of voters and let them make a choice in the general election,” she told 7 News.

Duffy lost by 377 votes to Jefferson County legislator Scott Gray.

There is no Democrat in the race.

“I think with the fact that we are both Republicans and there are no Democrats running, I can’t be called a spoiler. We’re just gonna give them a choice between two people that would be very different representatives in Albany,” Duffy said.

“That’s her decision, certainly, but I would say she’s completely disregarding the Republican voters who spoke on Tuesday,” Gray said Thursday.

“Republican voters spoke, the race - as far as I was concerned - was a Republican primary, and I consider the race over,” he said.

That said, Gray argued that in an general election, his politics work better with voters.

“My ability to work across the aisle is evident, and I think that appeals to more people in a general election than her message does,” he said.

To the contrary, Duffy argues she best represents the sentiments of north country voters.

“We need a different choice for who’s gonna represent this area. I’m hoping the Republican Party will continue to support a conservative candidate,” she said.

Asked whether he’ll debate Duffy, Gray was non-committal, but said “everything is on the table.”

The 116th state Assembly District is known in the north country as the “River District.” It includes the shoreline towns of Jefferson and St. Lawrence counties, and the city of Watertown.

The district is currently represented by Mark Walczyk, who this year is running for the state senate seat being vacated by the retiring Patty Ritchie.

Tuesday night, Gray won the vote in Jefferson County 2,353 to 1,851, while Duffy beat Gray in St. Lawrence County 1,195 to 1,070.

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