Following the money in NY Dist 21 race - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Following the money in NY Dist 21 race

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PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. - Candidates campaigning for New York's 21st congressional district are on the homestretch -- and spending big bucks to win the open seat.

Simon Conroy is volunteering to help Aaron Woolf, the Democratic congressional candidate running to represent his district. "Republicans, Democrats and independents who want to have a voice in the decision of who is going to be elected in this election," Conroy said.

The Beekmantown resident has donated his time, energy and money because he believes support within the district is important in a race with so much outside influence.  "We want to help promote a candidate that we see as somebody who can actually represent the North Country," he said.

Come election day, voters will be hitting polling centers across Clinton County and political experts say the major parties are doing everything they can to get their points to would be voters. "The Democrats and Republicans in Washington D.C. want this seat because Nancy Pelosi and John Boehner each want to be speaker.  And to be speaker you have to get 218 seats," said Harvey Schantz, who teaches political science at Plattsburgh State University.

According to website OpenSecrets, as of September 30th Woolf has raised $1,703,576  and Republican Elise Stefanik has raised $1,538,859 in the race for the open seat in New York's 21st district.

"Money directly contributed to candidate campaigns, and that comes from four major sources: individual contributions, political action committees, political parties and the candidates own money," Schantz said.

He says money also goes to benefit a candidate outside of the candidate's campaign. According to OpenSecrets, Woolf has gotten an extra $22,000 from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Outside sources contributed more than $2 million to Stefanik over the course of her campaign. Schantz says outside parties dropped Woolf to focus on Democrats in other districts. "There have been four large outside spenders in this cycle: the chamber of commerce, the Crossroads, New York 2014 and the National Republican Congressional Committee," he said.

According to Schantz, the New York seat is close to the national average on campaign spending.

Bill Owens also benefited from outside spending. In 2012 he received more than a million dollars from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee during his bid for the same seat.

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