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Syracuse GOP leader may challenge Cox for state chairmanship

State Republican Chairman Edward F. Cox may face a challenge to his party leadership from the head of the Syracuse area GOP.

Onondaga County Republican Chairman Thomas V. Dadey Jr. says he is considering running against Cox when the state committee meets Monday in Albany. His statement followed a Daily News story indicating Dadey was mulling the challenge.

“I am extremely proud of our record in Onondaga County, and I want Republicans to compete in every corner of New York and win statewide races once again,” said Dadey, a Syracuse insurance executive and the state party’s first vice chairman. “Therefore, in the coming days I will listen to my fellow county chairs and state committee members and give serious thought to whether I can contribute to that effort as chairman of the state Republican Party.”

Dadey said he is receiving encouragement to run after the Daily News reported some upstate party leaders say Cox has failed to bridge the divide between the party’s conservative and moderate wings or raise enough money. Cox, the son-in-law of former President Richard M. Nixon, has served as party chairman since 2009 but has encountered criticism over the years for failing to win any statewide contests.

Cox is slated to speak at the annual dinner of the Amherst GOP on Tuesday, the day after the party meeting in Albany.

Dadey, meanwhile, noted in his statement that under his chairmanship, Republicans have proven successful at fundraising, and won a supermajority in the Onondaga County Legislature despite an enrollment disadvantage.

Erie County Republican Chairman Nicholas A. Langworthy, also often mentioned as a future state chairman, declined to comment late Monday.