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Voices of the Voters: In Corning toss-up, a feminist comes down on the side of Clinton

CORNING – It was a tough decision for Karen Biesanz to fill in the ballot for Hillary Clinton in the Democratic Primary.

“It was a toss-up to the bitter end,” she said outside Local 1000 United Steelworkers Hall off Buffalo Street.

“I was excited when she ran in the first place,” said the retired sociology teacher at Corning Community College and former probation officer.

She said Bernie Sanders is a formidable opponent, and she was “afraid” of Clinton’s stance on the war. “I thought maybe she was too much of a hawk for my taste. In the end, I did vote for her. I am a feminist. She’s always supported those issues.”

Meanwhile, her husband voted for Sanders. Fracking is an issue in the Corning area, she said, and Sanders is more to her liking on that issue.

She is very concerned about the Corning aquifer, and the loss of water to big oil companies for fracking.

But on this sunny afternoon in the home of Corning Inc., the Fortune 500 company that the city is known for, the vote of this docent at the Corning Museum of Glass was for Clinton.

Voters in Corning couldn’t wait to vote Tuesday. Some showed up at 10 a.m., according to election inspectors, when the polls did not open until noon in the union hall. The words “Prosperity, solidarity, brotherhood and security” are displayed around the union seal.

More than 100 voters came up in the first hour of voting, said Hal Brouneus, poll site coordinator.

“It’s been very steady,” he said. “New York hasn’t had a chance to be part of this since the mid-to late-’80s.”