UPDATE: a statement from David Carlucci's office has been added.
Elections are not too far off and some campaigns have begun. However, for one Chestnut Ridge resident, he’s already hit a hurdle early on. This is not Grant Valentine’s, but Senator David Carlucci isn’t making it easy for him.
Carlucci challenged more than 1,100 signatures on Valentine’s petition. Valentine needs 1,000 signatures to be on the ballot.
“He’s claiming they (the petition signatures) were not democrats … claiming they were forgeries. It’s been a very tough week or so. We’ve been working on the objections trying to get them cleared up,” said Valentine. “We have to go back and pull their voter registration card and validate that they are democrats. We should know something by early next week.”
Jason Elan, Campaign Spokesman for David Carlucci responded to Valentine's comments:
"We had heard of several complaints from individuals who had concerns over the validity of Mr. Valentine’s petitions," said Elan. "The state Board of Elections has found several problems associated with the petitions, and we are going to wait to hear what the Board of Elections says. As the endorsed Democrat in this race, Senator Carlucci takes the process of building grassroots support very seriously, and he is proud of the strong response his volunteers received when they were out knocking on doors and collecting signatures."
Valentine added that Carlucci’s challenge has caused low moral among the people working on his campaign.
“I feel very strongly about someone making a frivolous charge and saying that (I) am not who I am. People who do that do not get penalized for it,” Valentine said. “It’s a tremendous task to do (to validate the signatures).”
He added that many of the people who are supporting him are disabled and keeping an up-to-date voter registration card is difficult for some of them.
“When you think about a lot of the people that are in … my organizations, such as the Nanuet Lions club, they have disabilities and are visually impaired. They may not exactly be what is on their voter registration card, but that’s who they are,” he said.
Valentine said that he is not well-versed in political tactics, such as the one that Carlucci did because he is a community man first.
“I don’t have the mindset of a politician. I’m more of a public servant, in that I try to see how I can benefit the people. What I’ve been doing all my life is public service,” said Valentine. “I do things in my community because I feel very strongly that it’s important to give back to my community. I’ve been a community person for over 30 years.”
Check back with Patch to learn more about Valentine’s take on Carlucci, the home rule legislation and his three core issues:
- Senior Citizens