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Cuomo on special election for NY-27: 'Sooner rather than later'

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said Tuesday he is inclined to call a special election to fill the congressional vacancy created by the resignation of Republican Chris Collins “sooner rather than later,” though he did not commit to a specific date.

During a radio interview with Albany’s WAMC, Cuomo pointed to a number of ongoing projects requiring state and federal dollars and said “Western New York deserves representation.”

“The question is, when can I do it?” he said. “But sooner rather than later is my inclination.”

Cuomo noted his well-known aversion to special elections, especially because of cost.

“I tend to shy away from having numerous elections. You know, voters don’t want to vote multiple times,” he said. “I’ll go to the polls, let me go once and make all the decisions.”

The governor said the Collins resignation occurred too late for a special election to be slated for the general election date of Nov. 5. He also noted his recent proposal to combine as many elections as possible into one date.

The next scheduled election is April 28, when a heavy Democratic turnout could take place if the presidential primary still proves competitive.

The governor's apparent preference for a special election also means GOP leaders from the eight counties of Collins' 27th Congressional District will be charged with selecting a candidate from as many as six declaring interest.

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