ALBANY—Representative Eric Massa has still not endorsed Kirsten Gillibrand's re-election, and insists she hasn't brought it up.
"No, not at all," he said during a conference call with reporters. "I speak to her almost weekly about matters of legislative business that we collaborate on for the benefit of the people in the district and the state in general."
He said it's "awful early" in the process, and that he's currently focused on a major piece of health care legislation pending before Congress. Massa said he wrote to congressional leaders asking that a vote not be rushed by the August recess. He said he has concerns with financing an expanded coverage system using income taxes and can neither vote for the bill in its current form, nor, he expects, for any amended version cobbled together by August.
Massa is one of three upstate Democrats in New York's House delegation who has not endorsed Gillibrand. (The others are Paul Tonko and Louise Slaughter.) Overall, 11 members of the delegation endorsed the freshman's election bid, but many members from New York City have held out.
Gillibrand has been highly proactive in seeking endorsements as she braces for a primary bid against Representative Carolyn Maloney. Some Democrats have been more receptive than others.