When I announced last year my candidacy for the Democratic nomination for Congress
representing the people of the 19th Congressional District, I emphasized that this race is not
about political ambition or personal gratification. Rather it is an effort to bring
responsible representation to the District and change the direction of the region and
We must, as a people, reject the old politics of confrontation and negativity...to literally put
PEOPLE over Politics. We need to find real solutions to real problems. We need to
implement solutions that work....and not entertain sound bites that advance only a
politicianís personal agenda.
Health care costs, the lack of retirement security, outsourcing, the enormous federal deficit,
the lack of security in our ports, a war we didnít need to wage, an under-funded education
system, skyrocketing property taxes, a failed energy policy, gas price hikes, and illegal
immigration are just some of the important issues facing our district and nation. We have
no time for politics as usual, but rather we must fashion real alternatives to the failed
policies of the current administration.
I firmly believe that if we work together we can and we must change the direction of our
country. This is why at every forum I spoke of the need for all progressive Democrats to
unite behind one candidate. The response to my message of unity has been warmly
received by Democrats in every one of the five counties (Westchester, Rockland, Putnam,
Orange and Duchess). I am especially proud of our victory at the Westchester Convention
and our support in all the others as well. I am also grateful for the strong endorsement
from the Yorktown Democratic Committee, the UAW, and the Yorktown PBA.
I believe our country is at a critical crossroads. This November the Democratic Party has
the opportunity to take back the House and restore balance to the Federal government.
This balance is sorely needed since we have suffered under one party rule for a long time.
Our voices, our progressive ideas, our concerns have not been heard. This is precisely why
I entered the race. It was not for personal ambition or gain but to advocate in a strong,
clear voice for progressive change and bring much needed representation to the citizens of
the District. In my judgment, it is imperative that we join forces now to ensure that we
elect a Democrat to the 19th Congressional District in November. To continue to divide our
energy and resources among so many candidates will only make it more likely that we will
fail. I believe that the best role I can play towards that end, is not as a candidate, but
rather as an ardent supporter of the Democratic Nominee. I therefore have decided to end
my candidacy but not my involvement. Despite submitting the requisite number of
signatures to have my name placed on the September Primary ballot, I have notified the
State Board of Elections of my intention to decline that honor. I remain however more
dedicated than ever to speaking out with passion and conviction about what we can do to
improve the lives of every single citizen in the 19th Congressional District. We owe it to
ourselves, our children and our grandchildren to work as hard as we can to ensure that we
have a change of leadership in Washington this fall. And thatís exactly what I intend to do.
My heartfelt thanks go out to all those who have supported my campaign, who worked as
volunteers, who signed and carried my petitions, who contributed to my campaign both
with financial support and with blood, sweat and tears. I ask all of you to join me in
fighting with all our hearts for the principles we believe in. I ask you to join me in my
efforts to unite the Democratic Party and win this seat in November.
I look forward to continuing to serve the residents of Yorktown as Councilman and
continuing my lifelong commitment to public service.
Councilman James J. Martorano