Examiner: Harckham Gears Up Campaign During the Heat of Summer

Summer is roughly at its midpoint and Peter Harckham is comfortable with his standing in the 40th state Senate District race.

That doesn’t mean he’s resting on his laurels. To the contrary, the former Westchester County legislator has been out and about in the district meeting with what he hopes are his future constituents, including visiting Metro-North stations before 6 a.m.

“What I’m hearing most is that they want a Senate that works,” Harckham said. “It’s really clear that the Senate has abdicated its right to lead because they really couldn’t even pass the ministerial stuff, the red-light cameras, the home rule tax warrants, all these local little things that should be as of right, that should be done, they got none of it done.”

But Harckham first has to win two contests if he hopes to get elected – the Democratic primary on Sept. 13 against Robert Kesten, who got an early jump in the race late last summer, followed by what would surely be a bruising general election battle against two-term Republican incumbent Terrence Murphy.

Harckham has been racking up endorsements from key Democratic officeholders this summer with Assembly members Sandy Galef (D-Ossining) and Thomas Abinanti (D-Pleasantville) and many of his former colleagues on the Board of Legislators. He is also expected to soon receive the support of County Executive George Latimer.

He said the support he has received from Democrats at the county and state level has bolstered his campaign. Harckham is optimistic that the general public will evaluate him based on his accomplishments.

“I happen to have a record,” Harckham said. “A lot of people know my record, they know of me and they’ll make a choice, good or bad, but I’ve got a resume and so that’s what people will judge what kind of senator that they think I’ll be.”

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