When Republican Dave Catalfamo conceded to Democratic Assemblywoman Carrie Woerner on Friday, he included this message: The mechanics of conducting an election are not perfect, but the vote was not rigged.
"Our democracy is our most precious gift as Americans, and our continued shared faith in that system is essential to our future," Catalfamo said in a statement. "While our voting system is imperfect, it is not rigged. This election result is fair, I accept it without reservation and I strongly urge all my supporters to do the same."
The sentiment comes as President Donald Trump, without evidence and amid court challenges, has alleged widespread fraud in key battleground states. He is yet to concede to the projected winner, Democrat Joe Biden.
Catalfamo is a longtime fixture in Republican politics, having served in Gov. George Pataki's administration, a private-sector communications specialist and as a county economic development official.
He ran the campaign for the Saratoga County Assembly seat on a push against the state's law ending cash bail and other criminal justice reforms.
"This was a tough and spirited campaign, focused on the issues that matter most: our safety and security and New York’s economic recovery," he said. "The 2020 election was unlike any other, and I am so proud of our team and the effort we waged in the midst of an unprecedented pandemic."
The vote tally between Woerner and Catalfamo was a narrow one, but Democrats have generally held the advantage in absentee ballots.
"I am humbled that the people of the 113th Assembly District have once again entrusted me to represent them in Albany," she said.
"I want to extend my sincere and heartfelt gratitude to the army of volunteers who made all the difference in this race. Thank you to everyone who helped address cards, drop lit, make calls or knock doors—I could not have done this without your help. I look forward to continuing to serve our communities."