It’s been a balancing act for New York State Assembly Member Joe Morelle lately.
He’s spent his work weeks in Albany and his days back in the Rochester area campaigning for New York’s 25th congressional district Democratic primary.
"It's going great. We're out talking to people about the upcoming primary and of course the general election in November, the issues that are important to people in this community, the issues that are important to people around the country,” Morelle (D) said.
Morelle is the Monroe County Democratic Committee’s endorsed candidate.
He’s spent more than two decades serving in the state Legislature.
"I don't think there's any question that the breadth of my experience at county and state government, my being selected to be the majority leader of the state assembly which is the most progressive, Democratic body in the country, I think that experience is what sets me apart,” said Morelle.
He says his governmental and leadership experience is valuable because he knows how to work well with people from both sides of the aisle and pass legislation.
Important qualities Morelle says, now more than ever.
"I think what we've seen, what's happened in Washington and in the White House with a president who has no government experience, has no ability to drive consensus, no ability to move forward in a bipartisan way. Those are things that I've done in Albany,” he said.
Morelle says his priorities include reforming the nation’s health care system.
He is a proponent of the single-payer Medicare for All proposal.
He also says something needs to be done about the proliferation of guns in the United States.
"I want to do everything I can to enact safe gun laws in the United States Congress, similar to what I've done as a member of the state Legislature with the SAFE Act and other initiatives that we've done over the years,” said Morelle.
The seat opened up when longtime Congresswoman Louise Slaughter, who Morelle considered a close friend, passed away earlier this year.
"I think the best we can do is honor her legacy by continuing to fight for the things that she cared about and to continue to represent this community with the passion, the energy that Louise brought to the job,” he said.
For more information on Rochester's congressional race, check out our NY-25 Voters Guide.