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Antonacci wins Republican designation to run for DeFrancisco’s state Senate seat

Tom Magnarelli
WRVO News (file photo)
Onondaga County Comptroller Bob Antonacci.

Onondaga County Comptroller Bob Antonacci has won the Republican designation in the race to fill retiring central New York state Sen. John Defrancisco’s seat. The 50th district, which includes parts of Onondaga County, has been in Republican control for decades. Antonacci won over Syracuse Common Councilor Joe Carni, who Antonacci said has agreed to support him and not challenge him in a primary. Antonacci said he has the best balance of business and government experience to fix Albany.

“New York is broken,” Antonacci said. “But I think there’s hope and I think that if we can get guys like me down in Albany that understand both the governmental aspects of policy decisions, and the business aspects of policy decisions, then maybe we can start to bring back some of our people who have left our community and our state for other areas of the country.”

Former Syracuse Common Councilor Rick Guy said he will challenge Antonacci in a primary in September, calling the nominating process rigged.

“To call the process rigged is an insult to the Republican party,” Antonacci said. “This was a very fair, open and transparent process. It’s disappointing for him to make those comments. That will be up to him if he decides to run, it’s a free country.”

Dewitt Town Councilor Joe Chiarenza will also try to force a primary against the designated Democratic candidate John Mannion. Petitions will be due in July.

Tom Magnarelli is a reporter covering the central New York and Syracuse area. He joined WRVO as a freelance reporter in 2012 while a student at Syracuse University and was hired full time in 2015. He has reported extensively on politics, education, arts and culture and other issues around central New York.