Sen. Patricia Ritchie's opponent has called for a debate in the wake of what she calls a misuse of taxpayer funding in the Heuvelton senator's campaign.
Amy Tresidder, (D-Oswego), candidate for the New York State Senate, 48th District, recently accused her opponent of using senate staff and taxpayer funded literature to campaign for re-election.
Tresidder blasted Ritchie for breaking her promise two years ago not to do so, claiming Ritchie has been running a political machine from her Senate office.
“Mailboxes all over the 48th Senate District have been full of literature from Patty Ritchie over the past few weeks. These mailers are nothing but self promoting campaign pieces thinly veiled as legitimate official communication from her senate office,” she said. “Mrs. Ritchie had months to communicate with constituents at the taxpayers’ expense, but she waits until the height of the campaign season to flood us with slick political messages.”
Tresidder called for a public debate between herself and Ritchie.
“I feel that a debate is warranted so that she can answer these allegations and address other issues of importance to the voters,” she said. “I am ready and willing to debate Mrs. Ritchie and call upon her to publicly agree to a debate.”
In addition to the alleged use of taxpayer dollars to fund political mailings, Tresidder said Ritchie is also having her staff respond to campaign inquiries.
“My opponent has had her staff campaigning with her all summer long,” Tresidder stated. “She had them at parades all over the district, and at her political events,” she said. “Where is the line for Mrs. Ritchie?” she asked. “She advertises campaign funded events on her official website, and her official website links to her facebook page
advertising campaign events as well,” Tresidder continued. “There is a time and place for campaigning and it is not two months before the election, not in the office and not with paid staff,” she stated.
The alleged abuse of taxpayer dollars extends to the St. Lawrence County Clerk's office, according to Tresidder.
“Mrs. Ritchie’s campaign listed the St. Lawrence County Clerk’s telephone number as a contact number,” Tresidder said. “Who knows how long she would have run her campaign out of that office if she had not been caught doing so earlier this year.”
Tresidder said that Ritchie owes the public an explanation regarding the alleged misuse.
“Mrs. Ritchie should be held accountable for her actions and answer for her broken promise” Tresidder stated.