Posts cross-posted at the WNYCongress blog aggregator, which covers the 25th, 26th and 29th districts.

When You Have Money...

The DCCC just announced that they will be running ads that respond to the Freedom's Watch ad campaign mentioned earlier today. The 29th is one of ten markets in the DCCC ad buy.

Bring 'em Back

Reader Elmer sends today's Corning Leader front page [pdf] (and jump [pdf]), where Randy Kuhl and Eric Massa agree that Congress should be called back into session to deal with the energy crisis.

The article is a good comparison and contrast of both candidates' positions on energy. Massa has refined his position on the Strategic Petroleum Reserve: he supports a plan to releasing light crude oil from the reserve and replacing it with heavy crude, which is more appropriate for the military. Kuhl voted against HR 6578, which contained that change.

Kuhl adds a new position. Countering Massa's claim that domestic oil could be sold abroad, Kuhl proposed a bill that would prevent the foreign sale of domestic oil. Those who believe that such a bill could work might want to check this out.

First Massa TV Ad

The first Massa TV ad is embedded below. (via Rochesterturning)

Update: The Massa campaign has announced that they will run the ad for one week on TV stations across the district.

Massa Gets *Gasp* Republican Endorsements

WETM reports on today's Massa press conference, where he was endorsed by Maj Gen (Ret.) John Batiste and former Horseheads Republican Committee Chair Sherman Moreland.

(Moreland isn't mentioned in the WETM piece, but a Massa press release includes him as another Republican endorsement.)

Update: Rochesterturning has video of Moreland's endorsement, which I've embedded after the fold. WENY in Elmira and Syracuse News 10 also picked up the event.

Update #2: Rochesterturning also has General Batiste's endorsement.

Reader Items: Yates and Stevens

Reader Rich sends news that the Yates County Democratic Party will be opening its campaign headquarters on Saturday, with Eric Massa in attendance. Yates, the smallest county in the 29th, went Kuhl by 8 points in 2006.

Reader Tom asks if Randy Kuhl took any money from indicted Senator Ted "Hulk Tie" Stevens [R-AK]. The answer is no, as far as I can tell from Kuhl's finance reports.

Mailing Receipts and Vets Issues

WETM carries Randy Kuhl's call for his constituents to mail gas receipts to Nancy Pelosi. Kuhl's justification is that "Democrats have failed to take any action on lowering gas prices."

Setting aside the question of whether Congress can do anything to affect gas prices in the short term, it's also true that Republicans have failed to take any action on gas prices. Here's Minority Leader John Boehner's address, for those who want to waste time and stamps on this idiotic venture:
1011 Longworth H.O.B.
Washington, DC 20515

In other news, the Hornell Evening Tribune has a story about Massa's new plan for Veterans, and Kuhl's mental health caucus.

Fix Washington is Out

Randy Kuhl's list of constituent ideas for fixing Washington is out. The Messenger-Post has a story on the effort.

Voting is now open, and Kuhl will introduce the highest-voted idea as a bill later this year.

The most commonly-suggested idea was term limits, which speaks for itself.

DCCC Reserves Major Time in WNY

The Washington Post reports that the new DCCC planned ad campaign includes a major Western New York buy of $2.7 million. That buy is split between the three contested seats in NY-25, NY-26 and NY-29.

(via The Albany Project)

Massa Press Conference: Educational Partnership

This morning's Massa press conference immediately followed a joint press conference with Democratic candidates Dan Maffei [NY-25] and Jon Powers [NY-26]. The subject of the conference was jobs and the future of children in Western New York.

I've asked for a copy of the plan, and when I receive it, I'll share the details with readers. In the meantime, here's Massa's take on it:

Hard Money

The Messenger-Post's money story gets it about right: this is a close race. I've looked through the Massa and Kuhl fundraising reports, and both reflect tough realities for each candidate.

Massa's hard reality is that his nut is much bigger than Kuhl's. He is running two fully-staffed campaign offices, and his payroll is bigger than Kuhl's. One of the many benefits of incumbency is that Kuhl can have a presence throughout the district without spending a penny. Massa doesn't have that luxury, and he spent $120K more than Kuhl this cycle, mainly on office expenses.

Kuhl's burden is that PACs aren't going to cut it. Last cycle, he got twice as much money from PACs as he did from individuals. This quarter, those numbers were almost even. At this point in 2006, he had almost $100K more in PAC money than he did at the end of June.

Kuhl is almost even with where he was last cycle, and he's had to make up the PAC shortfall by soliciting big-money donors in the district. Though his effort there is impressive, he doesn't seem to be able to match Massa's volume of small-money donors. This quarter, 30% of Massa's donors gave less than $250, versus 15% of Kuhl's. Massa gets a number of contributions via ActBlue, a clearinghouse for Democrats who want to give to a number of different candidates.

Overall, Kuhl is almost exactly where he was in 2006. Massa has raised almost three times what he did in 2006. If the trend continues, Massa will surpass his $3 million goal, which is double what Kuhl raised in 2006.

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