Tonawanda News

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September 12, 2012

Working Families primary on tap

Tonawanda News — The Republican Party line isn’t the only ballot position up for grabs in Thursday’s primary in the state senate’s 62nd District.

Lewiston resident Amy Hope Witryol will face North Tonawanda resident Timothy Moriarity for the right to appear on the ballot on the Working Families Party line during the general election. 

Witryol is a registered Democrat who has the endorsement of the Working Families Party and the United Auto Workers. The retired bank executive contends that she is the only candidate in the primary race that is truly interested in becoming the district’s state senator. She characterized Moriarity as a non-candiate who got involved at the recommendation of Niagara County Republicans, including incumbent state Sen. George Maziarz, R-Newfane. Witryol has suggested Moriarity is part of a larger effort by Maziarz to control Working Families and other minor party lines in the race. Maziarz has denied having any involvement in the campaigns of Moriarity or any other candidates. 

Witryol filed a lawsuit in court earlier this year, contesting Moriarity’s designating petitions which she noted were presented to voters within the district by several prominent members of the local GOP, including Maziarz aide Glenn Aronow, county Republican Party executive committee member Patti Weiss and deputy GOP election commissioner Michael Carney. Witryol’s case was ultimately dismissed as untimely by the courts. 

She insisted again Tuesday that her opponent in the Working Families race is not truly interested in the job, but rather a pawn of the county’s Republican establishment. 

“Moriarity’s not a candidate,” said Witryol. “He’s not running. His petitions were passed by Maziarz. He doesn’t want to be a state senator.”

Moriarity, a registered Working Families Party member who works at General Motors, did not respond to multiple requests for comment on Tuesday. 

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