(WSYR-TV) — Democratic challenger Dana Balter called Congressman John Katko Friday afternoon to concede the race in the 24th Congressional District.
At last count, Katko was leading with 165,374 votes. Dana Balter has 120,645 votes. Absentee ballots are still being counted, but it appears that Katko’s lead is insurmountable.
As of Thursday night, it was nearing a mathematical impossibility for Balter to overcome that lead.
A Katko campaign spokesperson had told NewsChannel 9 that it is “clear our campaign has prevailed.”
The 24th Congressional District covers four counties across Central New York.
Below is Balter’s statement:
“It is important that every single ballot be counted and every voter’s voice heard. I thank all those at the boards of elections for their professionalism and want to reiterate that they need to be given the time and space to finish their work.
The current absentee ballot count makes it clear that our campaign does not have a path forward. Today, I congratulate Congressman Katko on his victory and hope that in his next term, he will advocate for policies that will help working families in this district. As I’ve said since the beginning of my campaign, central and western New Yorkers deserve affordable and accessible healthcare, an economy that works for working people, and a political system free from the influence of big money.
Our campaign was guided by one simple principle: that everyone deserves a fair shot at success. To the countless people who so selflessly dedicated their time and energy in support of this message — thank you. I have learned so much from each of you, and am grateful for the still-growing community we’ve built together.
To the people across the district who shared with me your personal stories — thank you. Your stories motivated me every single day on this campaign, and inspire me to keep pushing for progress.
I entered this race because working families in central and western New York needed a champion to fight for them. We still do. Although I won’t be representing you in Congress next term, I hope you’ll join me in remaining committed to this mission, because the stakes are far too high to sit this fight out.”
Below is Katko’s statement:
“I spoke with Dana Balter earlier this evening, and congratulated her on a well-fought campaign.
It remains an honor and a privilege to represent Central New York in Congress, and I am extremely grateful to have earned re-election for a fourth term. I am especially humbled by the resounding support our campaign received across party lines. Now, more than ever, our nation needs members of Congress willing to work across the aisle to deliver. We have a tremendous amount of work to do. At the forefront, addressing the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and working to rebuild our economy. I look forward to getting back to work in Washington.”