John Mannion received the support of a prominent women's organization and he has sent his first mailer to voters in the 50th Senate District.
The New York chapter of the National Organization for Women endorsed Mannion, D-Westvale, and other state legislative candidates Wednesday. The candidates receiving the group's support include Cayuga County Legislator Keith Batman, who announced last month that he won NOW's backing.
The National Organization for Women reviews a candidate's position on certain issues before making an endorsement. The main issues for the group include ending discrimination and violence against women and girls, income inequality and reproductive rights.
Mannion is one of eight state Senate candidates endorsed by the National Organization for Women. The group also supports state Senate Democratic Conference Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, who could become majority leader in 2019 if Democrats win control of the chamber.
"The ballot box is where our power lies to defend our democracy and civil rights and to win new critical victories for women," said Sonia Ossorio, president of the National Organization for Women in New York. "NOW-NY is proud to get behind some of our experienced stalwart defenders of women's rights as well as a significant number of tenacious new candidates who we trust to stand up for our values."
The endorsement is the latest for Mannion in the 50th district race. He is vying to succeed retiring state Sen. John DeFrancisco, a Republican who has been in office for more than 25 years.
The Republican candidate in the race is Onondaga County Comptroller Bob Antonacci. The contest is considered a top priority for both parties.
"I am proud to be endorsed by the National Organization for Women, and I thank this incredible group for supporting my campaign," Mannion said. "Women's rights are under attack nationally, and we need to take action here in New York state. I am proud to support women's rights, and I will work tirelessly to see real progress in Albany."
Mannion releases first mailer
Mannion's campaign is distributing its first mailer this week.
The literature features some biographical information about Mannion — he's a third-generation central New Yorker and a teacher. It also notes that he's "not a politician" — an acknowledgment that this is his first run for political office.
In the mailer, Mannion pledges to be an independent voice for central New York and highlights some of his positions on key issues, including support for term limits, preventing gun violence, making health care more accessible and improving education.
According to a copy of the mailer obtained by The Citizen, it was paid for by the New York State Democratic Committee.