Gillibrand To Replace Clinton in the SenateJanuary 22, 2009 - by Donny Shaw
>PIX NEWS is being told that Congresswoman Kirsten Gillibrand is the reported choice of Governor David Paterson to fill the U.S. Senate seat vacated by Hillary Clinton. Two Congressional sources say New York Democratic delegation has been invited to join Governor Paterson for the announcement at noon in Albany.
>Two members of that delegation, agreeing to speak without attribution, told me that the Governor has telephoned New York’s Democratic members of Congress for their views after Caroline Kennedy withdrew herself from consideration. One of the contenders, long-term Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney canceled a scheduled appearance on “PIX News Closeup” Friday because of a “conflict,” which she did not disclose. She too will be in Albany. According to the sources, Gillibrand, now in her second congressional term, is favored by Secretary of State Clinton herself. Paterson has been under pressure to select a woman.
>With most Democratic leaders in Albany coming from the New York City area, one source said this would be an important move for the Governor to have a Senator from upstate. Sources say Gillibrand, a blue-dog Democrat and a good fundraiser, would be an asset to Paterson in any bid for election in 2010. However, since her name has moved high on the list of candidates, there has been criticism of her voting record and of her support of the National Rifle Association.
Gillibrand won her seat in upstate New York by campaigning with fairly conservative political views for a Democrat (a Blue Dog, endorsed by the NRA). As a Senator she’ll be representing the entire state of New York, so it’s possible that her politics will shift somewhat to the left. If not, fellow Democratic New York Rep. Carolyn McCarthy has already pledged to challenge her in the 2010 primary.
Gillibrand’s House seat will be filled through special election to be held sometime in the upcoming months. The district generally leans Republican.
Here are some resources for learning more about her: