Brianne Murphy is unfazed by Dan Maffei's announcement that he will run for Congress.
Murphy, who like Maffei is a Democrat, said she is continuing to explore a run for the seat. She has started to raise money and said she will continue talking to voters in the district.
Murphy is a Syracuse attorney and first announced she was exploring a campaign in June. At the time, she was confident in saying that she would not drop out of the race if Maffei or other Democrats entered.
"I'm the only person who has filed, so they would be running against me at that point," Murphy said at the time.
Two months later, Murphy's words were similar as she continues to explore running for Congress.
"We haven't announced yet, but we're still moving forward. We have been getting a lot of positive feedback," she said.
Murphy said Maffei's announcement "doesn't change her thinking" about the race, although if she does pursue a run for the seat, it will create a Democratic primary.
"I would have preferred to run unopposed, but I didn't anticipate that being a reality," she said. "So that does not change anything for me."
Since Maffei's announcement, Murphy has received support from two progressive blogs: The Albany Project and DownWithTyranny. The latter is considering endorsing Murphy for the 2012 cycle.
With Maffei moving to the middle and running as a moderate candidate with a balanced approach, Murphy says getting support of progressives can help her in a primary.
"I don't think it hurts to shore up your base supporters. Being progressive is defined differently by every person, but I define it as fighting for working families and it aligns with everything I believe in. Equality and opportunity for everyone. I think it's important we have those values at the table," she said.
Murphy also commented on the recent debt ceiling debate and the state of politics. She said leaders in Washington "played Chicken" with the debt ceiling and called the debate "appalling."
"With the state of the economy, we can't afford that sort of partisan politicking with our economy," she said.
On the joint committee that was formed as part of the debt ceiling agreement to look at more spending cuts and, possibly, raising new revenues, Murphy said cuts should be made to spending. But she also said we should look at raising more revenue.
"There's no way that cutting alone is going to balance our budget. We need to invest in infrastructure, we need to create new jobs," Murphy said. "I know it's unpopular, but we need to make sure the corporations and the highest tax brackets -- the super wealthy -- are paying their fair share. I think, for all that's said about extending the Bush tax cuts -- people talking about $250,000 and is $250,000 really that much money -- well, as (Senator) Chuck Schumer said, why not make it $1 million? People making $1 million a year we don't have to extend tax cuts for."
Murphy said she will continue to go around the district as she explores her run. What the district will look like in 2012 is up in the air, however. With redistricting, many believe that the 25th Congressional District will be a casualty of the process because New York will lose two seats beginning in 2012. While there still will be a district that includes the four counties of the 25th -- all or parts of Cayuga, Monroe, Onondaga and Wayne -- there is a lot of uncertainty about how the district will look next year.