john Katko

N.Y. Lawyer Joins Democratic Primary to Challenge John Katko

Katko is one of the most vulnerable House Republicans seeking re-election next year.  (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Another Democrat has launched a campaign for the party's nod to take on vulnerable Republican Rep. John Katko next year.  

On Monday, New York lawyer Steve Williams on Monday announced his candidacy, joining two others  already in the race — former Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand aide Colleen Deacon and Syracuse University Professor Eric Kingson.  “From Wayne to Cayuga counties, from Oswego to Syracuse — people have told me they want an advocate in Congress who will fight to create jobs and get the economy working for everyone in Central New York," Williams said in a statement. "I’ve spent my career winning tough fights, and that’s what I’m going to do in Congress."  

Former Gillibrand Aide Joins Race to Challenge John Katko

Katko is a top target for Democrats in 2016. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Colleen Deacon, a New York-based aide for Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., until a month ago, has entered the Democratic primary to challenge Republican Rep. John Katko in New York’s competitive 24th District.  

On Thursday, Deacon filed her paperwork with the Federal Election Commission — joining Syracuse University Professor Eric Kingson who launched his own campaign this summer for the party's nomination.  “I have seen — up close and personal — how the issues in front of Congress affect real people’s lives, and I want to be a real voice for Central New York,” Deacon said in a statement posted on her website.  

Democrats Search for Katko Opponent in New York Swing District

Democrats have targeted freshman incumbent Katko but haven't yet come up with a candidate to challenge him. (File Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

As political parties pick up the pace of recruiting candidates ahead of next year's congressional elections, Democrats are searching for a candidate in NY's 24th Congressional District to challenge what they see as a vulnerable incumbent.  

Considered one of only 10 Tossup  districts in the country by the Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report /Roll Call, both parties have made winning the seat a top priority. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has targeted first-term Rep. John Katko on its “One-Term Wonders ” list of Republican freshmen, and the National Republican Congressional Committee placed Katko in the party’s Patriot Program , which is meant to protect its most at-risk incumbents.