New York’s 27th Congressional District is comprised of eight counties.
The leader of each county's GOP was in Batavia Tuesday to discuss the process to replace Rep. Chris Collins in the general election against Democrat Nate McMurray.
Erie County GOP Chairman Nick Langworthy says candidate interviews will begin next week, and the eight county chairs plan to make a decision as soon as possible.
Langworthy previously said he wanted to have someone in place by the New York State primary elections on September 13. He emphasized it needs to be sooner.
“I mean, you have cities, you have suburban towns, you also have a lot of rural, agricultural areas, you have a lot of different types of people for candidates to get up to speed up on, federal issues. Even if they are a state official, they may not understand federal ramifications,” he said.
Langworthy says while he has not spoken with Collins directly, he has spoken to his team, and indicated he believes Collins will cooperate with any plan to take him off the ballot.
He has yet to reveal what that plan would entail. Another meeting is set for Wednesday night in Geneseo.
A new poll suggests Republicans remain in a strong position to retain control of NY-27, despite the indictment of incumbent Rep. Chris Collins on charges related to insider trading and his decision not to seek re-election.
Clout Research, a Columbus, Ohio-based pollster with connections to U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, tested several potential replacements for Collins, and found they would do very well among likely general election voters.
According to the poll, state Sen. Pat Gallivan (R-59) is the strongest contender with a 20 point lead over Democratic candidate Nate McMurray.
Erie County Comptroller Stefan Mychajliw polled second best, with a 13 percent lead over McMurray. The poll actually has the Democrat candidate struggling to beat any of the Republican candidates mentioned as possibilities.
However, according to the poll, McMurray would run very close to former gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino, suggesting that race could be a toss-up if GOP leaders decided to tap the controversial ex-Buffalo School Board member to run in November.
Veteran Democratic strategist Jack O’Donnell said the results of the poll correspond with what he would expect. However, he said, trying to take the temperature of voters in the district, which includes eight counties, with a sample size of 323 people is “ridiculous.”