WSRY-TV: Babinec Creates New Independent Line

By: Dan Cummings | WSYR-TV

Watch video here!

Central New York’s 22nd Congressional district is shaping up as a battleground election this fall.

The retirement of moderate Republican Richard Hanna has Democrats hoping they can take back the seat.

But the ballot could get a bit crowded—a political outsider who failed to file enough signatures for the Independence party line last month is trying a new approach to make himself a candidate

Martin Babinec says he’s created a new Independent party line for the November ballot— he calls it the Upstate Jobs Party.

To put himself on that line as a candidate for Congress, the Little Falls entrepreneur and startup investor has some work to do, starting next week.

First, the party. In a statement, Babinec promises the Upstate Jobs party supports “a sustainable economy powered by growth in innovation industries attractive to our region’s best talent.”

Now, the work. To put himself and this new party on the ballot, Babinec must gather at least 3,500 signatures of registered voters from any party or no party at all within the 22nd district.

Those signatures must come from voters who have not signed anyone else’s congressional petitions this year.  The petition process starts next Tuesday, and the petitions must be filed by Aug. 2.

The 22nd covers all or part of 8 different counties: all of Madison, Cortland, Chenango and Oneida counties…and parts of Oswego, Broome, Herkimer and Tioga.

Babinec has never held elective office. He founded a cloud-based human resource company, TriNet, in Silicon Valley in the late ’80’s. He moved back to Little Falls 11 years later, and now runs a non-profit that helps other start-up companies and entrepreneurs find capital and other resources.

Republicans will choose their candidate for the 22nd in a 3-way primary on June 28. Kim Myers of Broome County is the Democratic candidate.