Meanwhile, Republicans have been pleased with how the contest is shaping up. Assemblywoman Jane Corwin won the GOP nod last month and has since gotten the endorsements of both the state Conservative and Independence parties - something past Republican nominees in the last several special elections in New York have failed to do. Since beginning her campaign in earnest last month, Corwin is already up with both radio and television ads in the district. "It's good to see that Kathy Hochul was able to find the Democrat Chair meeting in Geneseo, considering she doesn't even live in the 26th District," Corwin spokesman Matthew Harakal said after Hochul's nomination was announced. "It's no surprise that her record of raising taxes and fees resonated with Washington Democrats and now she's their handpicked candidate. A career politician who has routinely voted to raise taxes and fees is just what Nancy Pelosi and Washington Democrats want, but it's exactly what Western New Yorkers are sick of." Two candidates are working to gather signatures to get onto the ballot as independent candidates - and petitions to do so are due by Monday. Iraq War veteran David Bellavia, who tried for both the Republican and Conservative nomination, has said he will run on his own "Federalist line," and wealthy businessman Jack Davis, who has run for the seat three times as a Democrat, is now courting tea party support after being turned down by the GOP chairs. Davis has promised to spend as much as $3 million of his own money, and his spokesman said earlier this week his campaign is on track to collect the necessary 3,500 signatures and more to get on the ballot. In another twist, the Green Party has nominated Ian Murphy, the Buffalo blogger who prank called Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker posing as conservative philanthropist David Koch during the labor standoff there.
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