For months the comptroller’s race was a little-watched affair as Harry Wilson, the G.O.P nominee, and Democrat Tom DiNapoli snapped at one another through press releases while most of the public looked away. Even the lone debate, at Pace University, failed to garner much media attention.
But now, as the race enters its final weeks, it has risen to a new level of intensity, and Republicans now think they have a legitimate chance to win their first statewide race in nearly ten years.
Over the weekend, Wilson garnered a slew of big-ticket endorsements, including The New York Times, Citizen’s Union, The New York Daily News, and Crain’s.
Meanwhile, the DiNapoli campaign and the state Democratic Party went into attack mode, pointing out that Wilson has failed to release his tax returns for this year, and circulating a Buffalo News article that points out how Wilson’s tenure at Silver Point investment firm resulted in cost-cutting moves at manufacturing companies that were harsh on workers.
Wilson has an advantage that his fellow downballot Republican, Dan Donovan, does not: he can self-fund, and according to the campaign finance reports, he has over $1 million more than DiNapoli going into the final week. Still, the state has many more registered Democrats, and it is a lot to ask voters to split their ticket for a seat that few have heard of and even less understand. Polls show DiNapoli with a big advantage, but the Wilson campaign will try its best to keep the race in the news over the next couple of weeks, hoping that if more people tune in then more people will decide that Wilson should get their vote.