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Two St. Lawrence University grads considering Rep. Owens’s seat

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CANTON - Two St. Lawrence University graduates — one a Democrat, the other a Republican — said Wednesday that they are considering running for the Congressional seat being vacated by Rep. William L. Owens.

Ogdensburg native Jonathan K. Cardinal, 28, who now serves as director of economic development for U.S. Sen. Kirsten E. Gillibrand, D-N.Y., said Wednesday he is exploring his options after learning Tuesday of the announcement by Mr. Owens, D-Plattsburgh, that he would not seek re-election in New York’s 21st Congressional District.

“At this point, I’m talking to all of the stakeholders throughout the region to gauge their support and interest,” Mr. Cardinal said.

A 2008 alumnus of SLU, Mr. Cardinal is a member of the Canton university’s board of trustees. Before joining Sen. Gillibrand’s staff in Washington, D.C., Mr. Cardinal was an aide on the staff of former Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., and served in various capacities in political campaigns throughout the state. In 2010, he was selected as one of 12 congressional staff members to participate in the Stennis Center’s Emerging Congressional Staff Leaders Program.

Warren County District Attorney Kathleen B. “Kate” Hogan, 50, a 1985 SLU graduate, said she has been approached by Republican Party leadership about a possible candidacy.

“I’ve been asked to consider running for the office, and I’m giving it serious consideration,” she said.

First elected as district attorney in 2001, she is now serving her fourth term, most recently having run unopposed. She serves on Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s Moreland Commission to Investigate Public Corruption, has served as president of the state District Attorneys Association and in 2012 was named state Prosecutor of the Year by the District Attorneys Association.

Several media outlets report that former Rep. M. Scott Murphy, D-Glens Falls, has also been discussed as a candidate. Mr. Murphy won a special election in 2009 to fill a vacancy in New York’s 20th Congressional District that was created when former Gov. David Paterson appointed then-Rep. Gillibrand to the Senate to replace then-Sen. Clinton, who became U.S. Secretary of State. He was then narrowly defeated in the 2010 general election.

Mr. Murphy, who is Ms. Hogan’s brother-in-law, is now managing director and chief investment officer with Advantage Capital Partners in New York City. He could not be reached for comment.

Two other high-profile potential candidates continued to keep their intentions unknown. Dierdre K. Scozzafava, deputy secretary of state for local government and former 122nd District assemblywoman from Gouverneur, entered the 2009 special election race to succeed fellow Republican John M. McHugh, but later dropped out, endorsing Mr. Owens. Shortly after that election, Ms. Scozzafava switched her registration to Democrat.

Republican Matthew A. Doheny, Watertown, lost closely contested races to Mr. Owens in 2010 and 2012.

Neither returned phone calls Wednesday.

Three Republicans have already announced their intention to challenge Mr. Owens: Joseph M. Gilbert, an Army veteran and former St. Lawrence County emergency services director; Elise M. Stefanik, a Willsboro businesswoman with experience working in the White House and on prominent Republican political campaigns; and broadcast engineer and computer consultant Michael F. Ring, Adams Center.

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