By Aaron Blake - 08/10/09 02:38 PM EDT
Following Friday’s announcement that Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) isn’t running for Senate, Reps. Jose Serrano (D-N.Y.) and Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.) both have signaled they won’t run, either.
Serrano told the New York Daily News on Sunday that he will not pick up where Maloney left off and wage a primary campaign against Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.).
"No, I'm not running," Serrano told the Daily News. "But I was not pleased with the selection, and I'm not pleased with the style and the pressure on Maloney and everyone else to get them out.
"I've been in office 35 years. … I've never seen this type of pressure to get candidates out of the way. The White House, the vice president, the senator (Charles Schumer, D-N.Y.). This was incredible."
Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.) was also prepared to run against Gillibrand,
but he bowed out reluctantly after pressure from the White House.
It doesn’t look like Maloney’s decision will cause McCarthy to reconsider, either.
McCarthy had said shortly after Gillibrand was appointed that she would run against the senator if nobody else did. When it looked like Maloney was set to run, McCarthy said she would not run.
But even though Maloney’s situation has changed, McCarthy’s spokesman noted Monday that other, lesser-known lawmakers, like Suffolk County legislator Jon Cooper, are weighing primary runs against Gillibrand. In addition, activist Jonathan Tasini is already in the race.
As long as someone else runs, it appears, McCarthy is absolved from needing to make good on her promise.
McCarthy spokesman Ray Zaccaro said the congresswoman “reserves judgment,” but that “she is not running for Senate” and that nothing has changed from her perspective.