2012 Election: Nan Hayworth vs. Sean Patrick Maloney

Meet Republican Nan Hayworth and Democrat Sean Patrick Maloney, candidates in the 2012 race for the 18th Congressional District

Nan Hayworth, a retired physician from Mount Kisco, won a seat in Congress in 2010 on a wave of support from both the Republican establishment and Tea Party backers. Running again in a district that includes all or parts of Westchester, Putnam, Orange and Dutchess counties — Rockland was cut out in this year’s redistricting — she is campaigning on a platform of cutting government spending, reducing energy costs, and repairing the nation’s infrastructure in order to create more jobs.

sean patrick maloneySean Patrick Maloney

Challenger Sean Patrick Maloney served as President Bill Clinton’s staff secretary for two years, then as an adviser to governors Eliot Spitzer and David Paterson. (He himself mounted an unsuccessful bid for state attorney general in 2006.) An endorsement from Clinton put Maloney over the top in the party’s primary for the seat, where he defeated Westchester politician Richard Becker and three other candidates. To boost job growth, Maloney aims to punish companies that move jobs abroad by ending the tax breaks they receive and reward companies that keep jobs in the U.S. by lowering their taxes.

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The race turned ugly in the fall, with both candidates releasing attacks ads. Maloney has played up his pro-choice stance on abortion, criticizing Hayworth for defunding Planned Parenthood. A Hayworth ad blasts Maloney as a “carpetbagger” who lives in Manhattan and relies on a Cold Spring property to justify his spot in the race. Maloney says he and his partner and three children are residents of Cold Spring.

Pundits in Washington have identified Hayworth as one of the Republicans in the House of Representatives most vulnerable to defeat this year, but polling showed she entered the fall with a lead over Maloney. The Democrat’s success will hinge in part on how well President Barack Obama performs in the district on Election Day.

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