Ryan wins special election, holding House seat for Democrats

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Pat Ryan will fill out the remaining four months of the term in the 19th Congressional District, holding onto the seat for Democrats. (Vaughn Golden/WSKG)

Pat Ryan will fill out the remaining four months of the term in the 19th Congressional District, holding on to a battleground district for Democrats ahead of even more contentious midterm races this fall.

The Democratic Ulster County executive defeated Republican Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro, carrying 51% of the vote with all precincts reporting Tuesday

“I can’t believe it. I’m so proud, so proud of our community. We stepped up. We stepped up when the whole country was watching. We sent a message,” Ryan told reporters after claiming victory.

Ryan only carried two of the 11 counties in the 19th district–Columbia and Ulster– with the vast majority of his vote share coming from the latter.

Molinaro refused to concede the race Tuesday, despite trailing by almost 3,000 votes with all precincts reporting.

“Stay with us and stay tuned. We’re not going anywhere,” Molinaro told a crowd gathered in Hudson.

Marc Molinaro refused to concede the special election to Democrat Pat Ryan Tuesday despite trailing by almost 3,000 votes. (Vaughn Golden/WSKG)

He did not return to the gathering before supporters and reporters were asked to leave.

Ryan will go on to run in the newly drawn 18th Congressional District in the midterm elections. Molinaro will seek a full term in the newly drawn 19th Congressional District. He will face off against Josh Riley, who won a Democratic primary race against Jamie Cheney, Tuesday night.