Statement on Winning the Assembly
District 103 Democratic Primary
When I announced my run for the State Assembly last year, I asked the people of District 103 to choose hope over fear, to put our collective imagination into what we stand to gain, and not just what we stand to lose. Since then, basic rights that have been fought for in this country, such as reproductive rights and gender rights, have come under attack from the right wing—the same right wing that spent $80,000 on mailers against me, mailers meant to scare, confuse, and discourage voters. In short, mailers meant to undermine our democracy.
However, in that same time period, my volunteer team members and I have also been warmly welcomed into thousands of homes. Regardless of which candidate they picked, the conversations were full of astute political insight and a continued willingness to take action on fixing the complacency of our government. But, we also had long and difficult conversations on loss, abandonment, and the constant testing of our hopes.
Whether they went to the polls or not, and whether they voted for me or not, I want to thank every single person who welcomed us into their home and opened themselves up to us; who took time to ask us questions and listened to the answers in good faith; I also want to thank the children who told their parents to vote for me, the parents who told their children to vote for me, and the grandparents who opened the door and said, “It’s time for a change!”
After a grueling Get Out the Vote operation that pushed every single one of us to our physical and mental limits, I spent election day at four poll sites: Midtown Neighborhood Center in Kingston, Woodstock Community Center, New Paltz Middle School, and Rosendale Community Center. At each of those poll sites, I met people—many of whom were by now familiar from having knocked on their doors so many times—who walked into the site with a smile on their face, who gave us a thumbs up or a wave saying “I voted for you!” Who chose hope over fear. I want to thank every single one of you.
I also want to thank our volunteer team members who put their personal lives (and the health of their cars!) aside and put everything on the table for this race, who drove up to a door and said, “Have you heard about Sarahana?” no matter how long the driveway was. Many of us have been knocking doors since December through ice storms, rain, and heatwaves.
And I want to thank all our endorsing organizations who believed in us. Winning takes a coalition and I was honored to be in one with you, to have run alongside State Assembly candidates on DSA’s “Green New York” and the Working Families Party’s “We Can’t Wait” slates, and to have had the support of representatives who are fighting the good fight in both Albany and the Congress.
Everyone I have met through this race has further inspired and emboldened me. We are building a multi-generational movement to fight against the hijacking of our democracy, and for the beautiful future we all deserve. And we are in this together, no matter where we are from and where we live in the state.
My decision to run for this office, specifically the office of the State Assembly in District 103, has always been about using every tool we’ve got, whether it’s a state office in a progressive district like ours, or conversations around the dinner table, to protect and strengthen our democracy. To make it work for the ordinary New Yorker. Because we can no longer afford to stay lukewarm in our advocacy of issues that are affecting us. We need to step up and lead.
This is just the beginning. Next, we must build on our common ground and bring people into the right direction we need not just for the Hudson Valley, and not just for New York, but for the whole country.
Lastly, thank you Assemblymember Cahill for 32 years of service to the Mid-Hudson Valley. I look forward to working with representatives, organized labor, and other partners as we seek to build the New York we deserve.
We refuse all donations from the CEO’s, corporations, lobbyists, fossil fuel polluters, school and healthcare privatizers, and luxury developers squeezing working people to the brink.
Checks can be made out to "Sarahana for Assembly" and mailed to:
PO Box 118, Ulster Park, NY 12487