Woodstocker Jeff Collins announced last week that he would end his bid for the state Senate’s 46th District seat and throw his support behind fellow Democrat Michelle Hinchey. Collins’ withdrawal and incumbent state Sen. George Amedore’s announcement earlier this month that he would not seek a fourth term leaves Hinchey, for now, the sole announced candidate in the race.
The 46th District includes all of Montgomery and Greene counties and portions of Ulster, Schenectady and Albany counties. (In Ulster County, it includes the city of Kingston and the towns of Saugerties, Woodstock, Hurley, Kingston, Ulster, Marbletown, Esopus and Lloyd.) Democrats hold an enrollment advantage in the district and party officials see it as a potential key to attaining a veto-proof majority in the state Senate. Collins, an educator and founder of the Hudson Valley Sudbury School, was the first candidate to announce a challenge to Amedore, R-Rotterdam. But his candidacy was largely eclipsed when Hinchey — daughter of longtime Hudson Valley congressman the late Maurice Hinchey — entered the race with broad support from Democratic elected officials.
“I have had a chance to get to know Michelle and her intelligence, passion and commitment to making a difference in the district and the state is clear,” said Collins in a Dec. 22 press release from Hinchey’s campaign. “Working together to ensure we win this critical seat is the best path forward for the district.”
Hinchey, 32, is a Saugerties native and graduate of the Industrial and Labor Relations School at Cornell University. She previously worked in communications for technology and media companies. Hinchey has said that she hopes to be a voice for “the upstate way of life” in the Senate’s new Democratic majority.
“I commend Jeff Collins for his commitment to improving the lives of Upstate New Yorkers,” said Michelle Hinchey. “I am proud to have his support and welcome him to our team. Jeff brings a lifetime of experience in business, agriculture and advocacy…”
According to published reports, a child victim’s advocate, Gary Greenberg, of New Baltimore, will also seek the Democratic nomination for the Senate seat.