Riding the momentum of a well-funded, well-organized campaign, Ulster’s Julian Schreibman scored an almost 2-1 victory over Dutchess County Legislator Joel Tyner in Tuesday’s Democratic primary for Congress in New York’s 19th District.
With about 90 percent of the 11-county district reporting, early returns at Schreibman headquarters in Uptown Kingston had the Stone Ridge lawyer leading Tyner 60-40.
Unofficial returns from the Ulster County Board of Elections had Schreibman leading 2,232 to 1,446 with about 10 percent of enrolled Democrats voting. Tyner, a five-term legislator from the Town of Clinton, prevailed only in Dutchess County, by an unofficial count of 1,061 to 693.
District-wide, the Associated Press was reporting Schreibman with 58.1 percent of the vote, leading Tyner 5,904 to 4,158 with 88 percent of districts reporting.
The winner will face Republican U.S. Rep. Chris Gibson of Kinderhook in Columbia County. Gibson currently represents about half the new Catskill/Hudson Valley district, drawn up by a judge this spring after the state legislature could not agree on a redistricting plan.
U.S. Rep. Maurice Hinchey, a Democrat, represents the other half. Hinchey, 73, announced his retirement after 20 years in office in January. He endorsed Schreibman last week.
While Tyner vigorously attacked Schreibman during their primary, the winner focused his attention on Gibson, a retired Army colonel who is seeking his second term. Campaign strategists in Washington consider the 19th, which voted 54-46 for President Obama four years ago, a swing district.
Scheibman predicted a “tidal wave of special interest money” pouring in for Gibson. The latest campaign spending reports show the Democrat with about $260,000, the Republican with more than $1 million.
Schreibman, in his victory address to campaign workers and volunteers at his Wall Street headquarters, credited Tyner with a “hard campaign” and commended him for his work as “an activist and a teacher.” He invited Tyner supporters to join his campaign. Tyner was not available for comment late Tuesday night.
Tyner, with a shoestring campaign, had hoped to parlay his popularity with anti-frackers and a low voter turnout into an upset victory over Schreibman who had been endorsed by most of the Democratic county committees in the 19th District. He got the low turnout — fewer than 11,000 of the more than 140,000 enrolled Democrats cast ballots — but it didn’t go his way.