Romero takes the 109th assembly district

Enterprise file photo — Michael Koff

Gabriella Romero speaks at an NAACP candidates’ forum in June.

ALBANY COUNTY — Gabriella Romero got nearly 30 percent of the vote in a field of six Democrats vying to replace Patricia Fahy in representing the 109th District in the State Assembly.

An Albany County public defender who serves on the Albany Common Council, Romero also has the Working Families Party line. A graduate of Union College and Albany Law School, she is a felony trial attorney, representing clients in misdemeanor and felony criminal cases.

At a June candidates’ forum hosted by the NAACP, Romero said that a vote for her is a vote for universal child care, for robust worker rights, for free college education, and for people over profit.

She also said she has worked with a broad coalition and got things passed in the Common Council by being an organizer.

Romero said she is the current chair of the New York State Young Democrats  Hispanic/Latine Caucus, which introduced the idea of a commission to look at where the war on drugs hurt Black and brown communities.

She supports the Invest In Our New York campaign, taxing billionaires 2 percent more.

When she was a student at Albany Law School, Romero said, she helped asylum seekers who were housed at Albany County’s jail. “The United States is a place for everyone,” she said.

According to unofficial results from the Albany County Board of Elections posted Tuesday night, Ginnie Farrell, another common council member, who works at the Assembly and was endorsed by Fahy, came in second with 21 percent of the vote.

Dustin Reidy, an Albany County legislator from Guilderland who is Congressman Paul Tonko’s campaign manager, came in third with 17 percent of the vote.

Owusu Anane, a special-education teacher who also serves on the Common Council and ran with the idea of being the first Black person to represent the 109th, got 14 percent of the vote.

Andrew Joyce, a county legislator who serves in the military, garnered 9 percent of the vote.

Jack Flynn, a fourth Common Council member in the race and the only candidate not taking campaign funding from the state, stressed senior care during his campaign; he got 8 percent of the vote.

In November, Romero will face Alicia Purdy, an Albany resident, who has both the Republican and Conservative party lines. Purdy ran unsuccessfully against Fahy two years ago.

All six of the Democrats were making their first run for the post.

Fahy faced a similarly crowded field a dozen years ago when Jack McEneny retired from representing the 109th; Fahy hasn’t had a primary challenge since and has won each biennial election handily.

Fahy is aspiring to replace the retiring Neil Breslin in the State Senate. As an assemblywoman, she focused on education, the economy, and the environment.

The 109th District includes all of Albany (population 101,000), all of New Scotland (population 9,000) and most of Guilderland (population 37,000). All three municipalities are heavily Democratic.

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