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GOP-Backed Judge Candidates Lose On Primary Night

</p>Judge Walter Hafner
Judge Walter Hafner

Republican voters refused the advice of the party on Tuesday, voting for two candidates who did not get the party’s official backing.

Oswego County Court Judge Walter Hafner beat Robert Genant in the Republican party primary on Tuesday night, with 56% of the vote.  He also won the Conservative Party’s endorsement.

Back in May, the county Republican committee snubbed Hafner, who has feuded with the District Attorney’s office.  The committee gave its backing to Genant in a close vote.

</p> <p>Kim Seager</p>
Kim Seager

The other countywide race on Tuesday pitted three lawyers in a battle to win the Republican endorsement to become the county’s next Family Court judge.  County Legislator Kim Seager won the fight, with 2400 votes.  David Roman finished second with 2004 votes.  He’s the current Family Court judge and won the party’s backing at the meeting in May. Fulton lawyer Sal Lanza carried just 640 votes.

In a county where Republicans outnumber Democrats by a nearly 2-1 margin, winning the Republican primary almost guarantees a win in the November general election.

In local races, Mary Flett beat Melvin Holliday in the Republican primary to serve the unfilled year left in the late Len Ponzi’s term on the County Legislature from the city of Oswego.

Former county legislator Carl Rusaw won both the Republican and Conservative primaries for a seat on the Volney town council.

Terrance Smith won the Republican primary for a one year term on the Scriba town board, and Frank Tomaino won the Republican primary for a one year term on the Constantia town board.