A Republican-backed super PAC's $2.2 million campaign in the 19th Congressional District this week now includes an ad knocking Democratic candidate Antonio Delgado.
The ad from the PAC, which is allies with House Speaker Paul Ryan and funded by casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, underscores what's been seen statewide: Republican incumbents in tight re-election battles.
“I think voters are smart and they will look past those kinds of partisan attack ads,” said Kirsten Gillibrand, (D) U.S. Senate.
The ads in the 19th district, too, have also been knocked for what critics say are racial overtones. One ad points to rap lyrics by Delgado written a decade ago, calling the Rhodes Scholar attorney a "big city rapper."
“I think the ads are racist and I think they're outrageous. I think he's a great candidate for this district. I'm so excited about his candidacy, his vision for what's right and I think he's going to be someone who speaks truth to power,” said Gillibrand.
Control of the House could in large part hinge on what happens in upstate New York: Races in the Buffalo area, central New York and the Mohawk Valley could make the difference. Meanwhile, Gov. Andrew Cuomo has made electing Democrats to Congress a key push for him. Cuomo has railed against the $10,000 cap on state and local tax deductions known as SALT.
“Every other state got a tax cut. We got a tax cut, and a tax increase,” said Cuomo.
Cuomo has made a repeal of that portion of the tax law a central issue
“You have to make a promise that the first thing you're going to do is repeal SALT. It was politically motivated. It's going to kill this state,” said Cuomo.
A political action committee funded by Cuomo has contributed the maximum allowed to Democratic candidates running for the House. They didn't necessarily need it as every Democratic challenger in recent months has outraised Republican incumbents in New York House races.