Syracuse-area Rep. John Katko said his history as a moderate Republican will be in play as Congress begins its 117th session in Washington. Katko expects more sway from moderates and his reputation will be a positive.
"Working relationships in Congress are based on a number of things, and one of them is numbers,” Katko said. “And the sheer fact that the Democrats have a razor-thin majority is going to necessitate them to moderate somewhat or they’re not going to get their bills passed.”
Katko, said that puts people like him in the driver’s seat.
“I’m head of the moderate wing of the Republican Party, called the Republican Governance Group,” Katko said. “I’m neck deep in the Problems Solvers Caucus. I have my own high bipartisan rating, and a personal goal of not introducing a bill without a Democratic co-sponsor. All those things are going to turn into play for me in a positive manner this term.”
Lawmakers were officially sworn in Sunday.
Katko is starting his fourth term representing the 24th congressional district, which is comprised of Onondaga, Cayuga, and Wayne counties and parts of Oswego County.
New York’s 22nd Congressional District seat, which represents the eastern part of Oswego County and stretches down into the Mohawk Valley and Southern Tier, will remain empty, for now. A winner still hasn’t been declared in the race that’s too close to call between Democratic incumbent Anthony Brindisi, and Republican challenger Claudia Tenney. Tenney leads by less than 30 votes.
Starting Monday, State Supreme Court Justice Scott DelConte will review hundreds of ballots disputed by the two campaigns and determine if they should be included in the final vote count. Uncontested ballots in the district were recanvassed, after DelConte ruled early last month, that the county boards of elections correct all errors, past objections, and recanvass the ballots, when necessary. DelConte wrote in his order that seven boards of elections had “careless or inadvertent failures” in canvassing affidavit and absentee ballots, and preserving challenges to those ballots.