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Pete King saddles up for November

Along with daffodils and tulips expect Pete King campaign signs to pop up over the coming days in the front yards of homes in New York’s Second Congressional District on Long Island.


By Ray O’Hanlon

Whatever about a significant number of his party colleagues, House Speaker Paul Ryan included, Congressman Peter King is not handing over the keys to his Capitol Hill office and riding off into the sunset.

By contrast, he is saddling up for another campaign aimed at securing his return to the U.S. House of Representatives where he has held a seat since first being elected in 1992.

That first two year term was as Republican representative for New York’s Third District. Now King represents New York’s Second District, a redrawn one on Long Island’s south shore that straddles Nassau and Suffolk counties.

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King is one of Irish America’s most prominent voices, but his current district is not as Irish as his former one and his campaign launch statement reflects this demographic change.

“Today is a great kickoff to my reelection effort for Congress as my campaign is filing petitions with more than 10,392 signatures for the Republican and Conservative Party nominations,” said King in his statement which was released Thursday.

“These signatures - 9,323 on the Republican petitions and 1,069 on the Conservative petitions - are almost twice as many signatures as both of my Democratic opponents combined, even though there are more registered Democratic voters than Republicans in the 2nd Congressional District! I also filed petitions to qualify for the Reform Party nomination,” King stated.

While the statement takes a swipe at Democrats, King has, over the years, attracted voting support from registered Democrats and Independents and will be seeking to do so again in a year when Democrats are expecting a high level of success in House elections across the country.

King, in his statement, said that as his campaign goes forward “I will emphasize my record of fighting for hardworking middle-income families who are the backbone of the district and for strong policies of fighting Islamist terrorism, rebuilding our military, and crushing MS-13,” a reference to the Latino gang blamed for a number of recent murders on Long Island.

“I will also, of course, always stand with the men and women of our military and law enforcement who protect our nation and our communities,” said the former Irish Echo Irish American of the Year.

“Throughout my time in Congress I have always fought for my constituents and never yielded to pressure groups or special interests, and that is how I will once again run my campaign. God Bless America!!” Rep. King concluded.