Sen. Eldridge mulls run over Rep. Chris Gibson
By Jay Braman Jr.
It appears that the region’s second term congressman Chris Gibson will face a new challenger should he run again next year.
Gibson, who was first elected to Congress in 2010 to represent the 112th district, was elected again last year to represent the 19th Congressional District after district lines were redrawn.
Gibson, a Republican, beat out Democrat Julian Schreibman last November, and has recently set up five offices within his 11-county district, with the closest to the Catskills being in Kingston and Liberty.
But now, before he has even fully set up shop, word has come that a challenger is getting ready to take Gibson on in the 2014 race.
Sean Eldridge, the founder of the campaign finance reform group Protect Our Democracy is considering a challenge. Eldridge is a Shokan resident who is also founder and president of Hudson River Ventures. He is also married to Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes.
While there has been no official announcement yet, Eldridge reportedly filed documents this month to pave the way to running for the U.S. House of Representatives as a Democrat.
Protect Our Democracy describes its mission as being to reduce the influence of money and special interests in New York state elections. The organization provided about $250,000 in funding supporting state Sen. Cecilia Tkaczyk, D-Duanesburg, in her upset win over former Republican Assemblyman George Amedore of Rotterdam in the 2012 race for the 46th Senate District.
According to its Facebook page, Hudson River Ventures, LLC is a small business investment fund focused on the Hudson Valley. Founded by Eldridge in 2011, Hudson River Ventures works to empower entrepreneurs and build thriving businesses throughout the Hudson Valley.
Locally, the company has invested in the Bread Alone Bakery, based in Boiceville.