Party leaders plotting strategies for county races

Apr 20, 2015

With the top of party tickets set, the political campaign for 2015 is underway. Democratic incumbent Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz will face off against Republican state Assemblyman Ray Walter.

Mixed in is the fight over control of the county Legislature, with Democrats seeking to regain control and Republicans seeking to add another seat to the majority caucus, adding to the current six-to-five margin.

GOP chairman Nick Langworthy announced Ray Walter as the party's county executive candidate on Saturday.
Credit Mike Desmond/WBFO News

Democratic County Chairman Jeremy Zeller says raising money is a key.

"We've got our work cut out for us. We've had a good fundraising year, so far, and we're working very hard to get our issues out," Zellner said.

"We talk to voters every day. Deb (Liegl) is already out there, talking to people throughout the community. So, we're excited for this year. We think we've got a great ticket."

Liegl is the Democratic Legislature candidate facing off against incumbent Republican Ted Morton in usually-Democratic Cheektowaga.

Republicans have their sights set on challenger Guy Marlette knocking off long-term Democratic incumbent Legislator Tom Loughran.

Republican County Chairman Nick Langworthy says his party can raise the necessary money.

"I absolutely do. I'll just remind you that Republicans have the sheriff, the comptroller, the Legislature and we have a cross-endorsed district attorney," Langworthy pointed out.

"We have done just fine here in Erie County. We've always had the money to get our message out and win races. When we put our mind to it, we'll do that here."

It's likely to be another expensive political year, with Poloncarz already having $400,000 in the bank.