McDonald bows out of race, vows to support Marchione

Thursday, September 27, 2012
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State Sen. Roy McDonald, R-Saratoga, greets supporters at the Holiday Inn in Saratoga Springs on primary night, Sept. 13.
Photographer: Peter R. Barber
State Sen. Roy McDonald, R-Saratoga, greets supporters at the Holiday Inn in Saratoga Springs on primary night, Sept. 13.

— State Sen. Roy McDonald will not actively compete as a third-party candidate in the 43rd Senate District.

After a few days of significant reflection, following the revelation on Monday that Saratoga County Clerk Kathy Marchione had essentially won the Republican nomination, McDonald sent out a lengthy email Thursday morning explaining he wouldn't be campaigning as the Independence candidate> he did not explain his decision to bow out of the race. His spokesman did not respond to an email.

Sources close to the campaign have said the decision stemmed from a desire to ensure the seat stayed in Republican hands, so his party could maintain its razor thin majority in the Senate. There was the possibility that his presence in the race could have split his party's vote and benefited Democratic candidate Robin Andrews in the heavily Republican district.

One source described this motive as an "unselfish decision" for his party.

In his email, McDonald does say he'll be supporting Marchione, because he is supporting all Republican Senate candidates.

"I believe maintaining the Republican Majority in the New York State Senate will continue to positively change state government," he wrote. "It is important to recognize the need for checks and balances in our democracy, which can only be assured by a multi-party system."

The day after the election he told The Gazette he was ready to campaign just as a third-party candidate. “I’m in this to stay,” he said at the time.

McDonald and Marchione engaged in a highly contentious and expensive primary resulting from his vote in favor of same-sex marriage, which prompted a conservative backlash. There was no mention of this historic vote in his Thursday's address.

Instead, McDonald highlighted his time as chairman of the Senate's Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Committee, his role in bringing GlobalFoundries to Malta and bills he passed to help people, including autism insurance legislation and programs to help veterans.

"I am proud of my time in public service. Standing up for the communities I represented was always my first priority," McDonald wrote. "I have been a senator for all people."

Going forward, he promises to continue working as an advocate for people with disabilities and their families.

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September 27, 2012
2:43 p.m.
Scacman6562 says...

Thank you, Senator McDonald, for all your tireless advocacy for your constituents, and for raising awareness, funds and support for Autism and the Developmentally Disabled community. I applaud your vote for gay marriage, and although it probably played a part in you losing your seat, it showed me the amount of courage you showed in making that vote, despite the numerous calls to do otherwise. Kudos to you for taking a stand and not backing down.

September 27, 2012
8:02 p.m.
cracker says...

I'll bet Gov. Cuomo is looking at Roy to get some appointed position in his administration.

September 27, 2012
9:26 p.m.
Sparkys_Dad says...

Great job Roy!
You always had my family's support to the bitter end.

Shame on Kathy-M and the machine for disrespecting you and tarnishing your record considering all the good works you've done over all these years.

We owe you a lot.
You have our gratitude and thanks for a job well done.
I've been told that those in my close family circle will be hard-pressed to vote GOP in the general election.

The Grand Pooh-bahs now running (ruining) our grand old party are proving themselves to be an intolerant bunch casting themselves into the dustbin of history. Not me. Not you.

Too bad there are no more old Rockefeller type Republicans left. Those of a fiscally conservative but socially responsible mind set are no longer tolerated. The democrats are becoming the old Rocky-Republicans (ha-ha-ha).

As for the GOP?

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