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John Mannion, center, is running for state Senate with the support of the Auburn police and fire departments. From left, John Breeze, Chris Major, Sean Corcoran and Tim Springler.

John Mannion earned a major endorsement from a leading labor organization in his bid for the 50th Senate District race. 

The New York State AFL-CIO endorsed Mannion, D-Westvale, over Republican candidate Bob Antonacci in the 50th district race. The federation of private and public sector unions backed Mannion at its convention this week. 

Mannion has the support of several unions in his campaign for state Senate. The labor groups include unions representing Auburn firefighters and police officers, United Auto Workers Region 9 and New York State United Teachers

"Central New York families deserve access to good-paying jobs, fair benefits, safe working conditions and quality education and job training programs," Mannion said. "These are my priorities as I campaign for state Senate, and I am honored that the thousands of hardworking New Yorkers who make up the AFL-CIO stand with me in this fight." 

Mannion has strong union ties. He is an Advanced Placement biology teacher at West Genesee High School in Camillus. He is president of the West Genesee Teachers Association and serves on the Onondaga County Teachers Association. 

Antonacci and Mannion are running to succeed state Sen. John DeFrancisco, a Republican who isn't seeking re-election this year. DeFrancisco, R-DeWitt, is retiring after more than 25 years as a state senator. 

The 50th district race is a priority for both major parties. Republicans want to retain the seat they've held for more than 50 years, while Democrats view it as a pickup opportunity. 

Antonacci will appear on the Republican, Conservative and Independence lines. He also filed petitions to run on the Upstate Jobs line, a party that was created by businessman Martin Babinec in 2016. 

Mannion will run on the Democratic, Women's Equality and Working Families party lines. 

Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 6. 

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