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  Chatting With Kirsten Gillibrand’s Primary Opponent, Who Exists
Parent(s) Race 
Last EditedJason  Mar 03, 2010 07:20pm
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AuthorDan Amira
News DateWednesday, March 3, 2010 06:30:00 PM UTC0:0
DescriptionHarold Ford Jr. may have decided not to challenge Kirsten Gillibrand, but that doesn't mean she's running for the Democratic Senate nomination unopposed. Unbeknownst to most New Yorkers, Jonathan Tasini, a labor activist, has been in the race since June. It's his second Senate campaign — he received 17 percent of the vote in a primary against Hillary Clinton in 2006. We talked to Tasini about why he thinks he can win, why nobody else does, and why legalized marijuana is inevitable.

You told the Times the other day, referring to your primary run against Hillary Clinton in 2006, "There was not one day that I thought I would win." Do you really think you can win this time?
Absolutely. I can win. I think the moment is right, I think the people are sick and tired of insiders like Kirsten Gillibrand. I got into the race because of the moment in time, because of the crisis in the country, and the firm belief I had that people are fed up with, frankly, both parties, and the dysfunction in politics.

That kind of sounds like a tea-party philosophy.
Well, I would argue that it depends how you define tea party. There are a lot of people angry in the country because they feel like they've been robbed, for the last 30 years — of their wages, retirement, they have no health care. Some of those people are being drawn into what you call the tea party. A lot of people are angry and don't have a home. And I think there's a legitimate and very powerful movement out there of people who want the country to function.
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