Hudson Valley Republicans, Democrats Clash Over Bus Going to DC
Democrats in the region say a politician sent "rioters" from the Hudson Valley to the U.S. Capitol while Republicans say that's not true.
Former New York Senator Jet Metzger who represented New York's 42nd District, which includes all of Sullivan County, and parts of Orange, Ulster, and Delaware Counties alleges Assemblyman Colin Schmitt of the 99th NYS Assembly District sent Trump supporters to Washington D.C. on Wednesday to protest the election results. A Facebook group made up of Orange County Democrats made the same allegation.
On Wednesday. Schmitt was sworn into his second term in the State Assembly by Orange County Clerk Annie Rabbitt during a virtual ceremony that occurred at his Washingtonville District Office. The Republican later released the following statement denying the allegations.
“This afternoon my district office staff received a credible threat of violence that has impacted the safety of me, my wife and my young staff members following the repugnant and false social media and press statements from the Orange County Democratic Party and NYC Democratic Socialists of America. Local law enforcement and legislative offices in Albany have been notified and are investigating the threat. Proper safety protocols have been initiated and will be ongoing. This type of violent incitement is as abhorrent as the violent attack that occurred today in Washington. The Orange County Democratic Party should be ashamed of themselves for inciting this act and for associating themselves with the NYC Democratic Socialists.
Orange County Right to Life, a peaceful and faith-based organization, invited me this morning to address a diverse group of local residents regarding legislation they are concerned with A. 416 and the issues with one-party control of government. Regardless of the lies from the Orange County Democratic Party and NYC Democratic Socialists of America — speaking to a group that included senior citizen ladies who use canes to walk around, members of local churches, union members and single moms is exactly the job of a State Assemblyman and one that I will continue to do. Following that conversation, I went back to my district office to be sworn in for my second term and conduct the first day of virtual session.
The fact that the Orange County Democratic Party and NYC Democratic Socialists personally attacked me for speaking to a local faith-based group about concerns they have with state legislation shows how deeply out of touch they are and why I achieved a historic re-election, winning every single town in my district, just two months ago.”
Schmitt later went live on Facebook to tell his side of the story.
Rabbitt backed up Schmitt's story.
"Yesterday, the Orange County Democratic Committee joined with the New York City Democratic Socialists to attack Assemblyman Schmitt and the members of Orange County Right to Life. This occurred just hours after I had the privilege of swearing Assemblyman Colin Schmitt into his second term at his District Office in Washingtonville. Orange County Democratic Chair Brett Broge owes Assemblyman Schmitt and the members of Orange County Right to Life an apology for the baseless, partisan smear campaign he is attempting to orchestrate. Assemblyman Schmitt was invited to speak to our neighbors who are members of Orange County Right to Life about state legislation about which they have deep reservations. For Chairman Broge to join with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s radical political operation to slander seniors, mothers, and honest, church-going Orange County residents, as well as our Assemblyman, is beyond the pale and demonstrates just how out of touch he is with Orange County residents and their values," Rabbit said.
Blooming Grove Deputy Supervisor George Doering released this statement:
Assemblyman Colin Schmitt is a dedicated public servant who has been an excellent partner in helping keep the residents of Blooming Grove safe and secure during one of the greatest health crises in our nation’s history. As an advocate and changemaker in the Assembly, Colin has proven himself to be a leader with integrity and always has the best intentions when speaking to community groups. It is abhorrent that yesterday's events in DC could ever be weaponized to mischaracterize or impugn our representative. Those who continue to echo malicious and inflammatory accusations are culpable in the worst kind of politics. I am happy to know the Assemblyman, his family, and his staff are safe and thank local law enforcement for protecting them at this time.
"The shameful coordinated false political attacks and lies against Assemblyman Colin Schmitt and private local residents by the Orange County Democratic Party and their allies are shameful and unjust. Their rhetoric has caused a threat to be made against our Assemblyman and is the lowest bar of political behavior. All of us in the 99th Assembly District know our Assemblyman is dedicated to our district and stand fully in support of him," Stony Point Supervisor James Monaghan added.