Cox Begins His ‘Listening Tour’

CLIFTON PARK—Ed Cox will swing through the Finger Lakes and central New York in coming weeks as part of a "listening tour" in advance of a possible run for state Republican chairman.

He will attend a mini-summit arranged by Jay Dutcher, the Ontario County party chairman, including Cox and other chairs and activists from the Finger Lakes, greater Rochester and the Southern Tier. Also present will be Brian Kolb, the Assembly minority leader. The meeting will take place at Sonnenberg Gardens in Canandaigua after the annual Ontario County Republican picnic.

"He's going to pitch, and he's going to listen," said Bill Nojay, a syndicated talk show host from the region who called me after speaking to Cox. Nojay called it an "important moment" for Cox as he attempts to build support for a potential run against Joe Mondello, the current state chairman, whose term expires in September. His spokesman Matt Walter has said he will seek another term, but Cox and Henry Wojtaszek are exploring runs against him. Dan Isaacs, a Manhattan lawyer, is openly seeking the job.

Nojay added that Cox will also be present at the Livingston County Republican dinner on August 21, where Erie County Executive Chris Collins will be the featured speaker. Cox Begins His ‘Listening Tour’