ITHACA, NY (WSKG) – Ithaca resident Leslie Danks Burke announced her candidacy for New York State Senate. The Democrat is challenging Republican New York State Senator Tom O’Mara to represent the 58th State Senate district.
Danks Burke also ran for the seat in 2016 but lost to O’Mara.
Since her last campaign, she has founded a bi-partisan, non-profit organization that helps people to run for local office.
Danks Burke said O’Mara doesn’t provide the district with effective representation.
She wants to bring more business to the region, support family farms, rural schools and help keep younger people in the region.
“Tom O’Mara is part of the problem,” she said. “He’s not the only one there who is choosing to not invest in our region and our future, but he’s certainly not part of the solution and he needs to go.”
WSKG’s request for comment from O’Mara was not immediately returned.
Dank Burke said O’Mara is part of a larger problem in Albany.
She said the divide in New York isn’t between Democrats and Republicans but between the wealthy and powerful and ordinary, working people.
“This isn’t just Mr. O’Mara who neglects upstate New York,” she said. “It’s the power interests across the, the New York City area and in Albany that team up together regardless of political party to rob upstate New York of a real shot at opportunity.”
In a campaign video, Danks Burke links O’Mara, a Republican, to Governor Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat.
New York’s 58th district includes Steuben, Chemung, Schuyler, Yates, and part of Tompkins Counties.