Business owners react to Gillibrand possibly eyeing Troy as 2020 campaign base

January 11, 2019 08:13 AM

TROY – New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is rumored to be considering Troy as a place for possible headquarters for a 2020 presidential bid. The Associated Press cites multiple sources, but those same sources said the decision isn’t final.

While nothing is confirmed yet, some people and businesses owners are excited about the attention this could bring to the city.


"She shops with all of us,” said Theresa VanDuyne, the owner of T&J Soaps on River Street. “I think it's great that she would be putting focus on an area of New York that's not New York City.”

The Democratic senator was born and raised in Albany. She graduated from the Emma Willard School in Troy and when she’s not in Washington D.C., her family’s home is in Brunswick. 

Denise Dreany, who works in Troy, said having politics in the city isn’t too far-fetched.

"As New Yorkers here in Albany, we definitely have the government presence,” said Dreany. “It's something we're familiar with so it's not an unusual thing for us."

But Laura Kerrone, the owner of Psychedelicatessen on River Street, worries having the headquarters in Troy wouldn’t be all good.

"It could create some conflict,” said Kerrone. “Any kind of political anything really is especially polarizing these days. So as far as being a good or bad contribution, there's no way of actually knowing that."

The headquarters could also mean an influx of people and traffic, which Kerrone wonders if the city can handle.

“Traffic and parking is an ongoing problem in Troy,” explained Kerrone. “So whether we can handle larger crowds, that's a tough call.”

However, VanDuyne says the city will adapt.

"We will figure it all out,” said VanDuyne. “With any growth, sometimes people have growing pains, but that's with any kind of growth."

Troy Mayor Patrick Madded released the following statement regarding the senator potentially having her presidential headquarters in Troy:

"Sen. Gillibrand has been a strong voice for New York State and the city of Troy, advocating on the issues important to our residents in Washington. For Trojans, she is not just a U.S. senator, but a neighbor and familiar face with deep roots in our community, so it makes sense that Troy could be part of her future plans, whatever they may be."

NewsChannel 13 did reach out to Gillibrand’s office for a comment regarding a 2020 presidential run and having headquarters in Troy, but did not hear back.


Emily De Vito

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