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Jermaine Bagnall-Graham

Jermaine Bagnall-Graham, of Sherburne, has dropped out of the 126th Assembly District race. 


Jermaine Bagnall-Graham, a Democrat who announced last year that he would seek the party's nomination to challenge Assemblyman Gary Finch in the 2018 election, has dropped out the race. 

Bagnall-Graham cited not missing time with his family as a reason why he opted to bow out of the 126th Assembly District campaign. He issued a statement after attending his son's science fair. 

"As a candidate, that is all taken away," he said. "The time away from home campaigning, soliciting donations, talking to voters as to why they should choose me and not the incumbent are all things that are for the greater good of New York. Seeing my son enthusiastically explain his experiments to the judges and being there to support him are things that are for the greater good of family." 

He continued, "In a selfish way, I am choosing family over the overall state of New York. God willing, New York will be here 10 or 15 years from now. I only get one shot at seeing my son as an 8-year-old and my daughter as a 6-year-old. I told my wife that I can't think about putting my family second." 

Bagnall-Graham announced his candidacy in July 2017. He was the first Democrat to publicly express interest in the race. 

It would have been Bagnall-Graham's second campaign for a state Legislature seat. He challenged state Sen. Jim Seward in the 51st Senate District race two years ago. Seward, R-Milford, defeated him to win re-election. 

With Bagnall-Graham's decision to bow out of the race, there isn't a declared Democratic challenger to face Finch, R-Springport, in the 126th Assembly District. Democratic leaders expect to have a candidate who will challenge Finch in the general election. 

Finch was first elected to the state Assembly in 1999. He defeated Democratic foe Diane Dwire to win re-election in 2016.