Paul Wasserman, the Republican endorsed candidate to challenge longtime Democratic Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D-18th CD) announced that he is pulling out of the race.
The former 'life-long Democrat,' who officially announced his candidacy in mid-April, cited 'personal reasons,' for dropping out of the race.
According to the Federal Election Committee, Wasserman, who is a partner in a Briarcliff-based venture capital company, had a little more than $254,000 in his campaign account. He had loaned his campaign $181,000, and had since been only able to raise $73,000. In comparison, Nita Lowey, who is seeking her 12th term in Congress, had more than $1.1 million, according to her latest filings with the FEC.
This marks the second time in this election cycle in which a potentially strong Republican challenger to Congresswoman Lowey has dropped out of the race in this, seemingly, 'anti-incumbent' year.
Mark Rosen, a 48 year old resident from Larchmont, and a senior vice president at Adecco – one of the world's largest job recruiting firms, was the heavy favorite to win the GOP endorsement. However, Rosen, who has spent more than 15 years in the Army and is serving as a lieutenant colonel and an executive officer, was recently deployed to Iraq.
The last man standing in the GOP field to take on the Harrison Democrat in the fall campaign is Jim Russell, a 56 -year-old theology professor from Hawthorne, who has taught at St. Peter's College.
Russell was Lowey's opponent in the 2008 general election. He earned 32% of the vote against Nita Lowey's 68%. According to the 2010 Almanac of American Politics, campaign financial filings showed Lowey spending $1,489,302 in her bid to win an 11th term, while Russell spent $19,906.
Westchester County Republican Chairman Doug Colety has announced that the party will now be supporting Dr. Russell in his efforts to unseat Mrs. Lowey.
The 18th Congressional District covers most of central Westchester County and stretches into Rockland County to Haverstraw.
Mrs. Lowey, 73, was first elected to the US House of Representatives in 1988, when she defeated the then two-term incumbent Joseph DioGuardi. Mr. DioGuardi is now petitioning to get on the Republican September 14 Primary ballot to challenge US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand.
The general election will be held November 2, 2010.