WATERTOWN — Republican Elise M. Stefanik won all 12 counties in the 21st Congressional District in her bid to secure her party’s nomination in the race to replace outgoing Rep. William L. Owens, D-Plattsburgh, according to official election results.
Ms. Stefanik, a former White House policy adviser from Willsboro, defeated fellow Republican Matthew A. Doheny by a wide margin, with more than 60 percent of the vote going her way.
In his concession speech, Mr. Doheny, an investment fund manager from Watertown, made the case to supporters that his campaign was hamstrung by the negative ads that characterized him as a “perennial loser” for his two previous unsuccessful campaigns and as a “significantly flawed candidate” for his missteps in the past.
Mr. Doheny cited the election day results from Herkimer County as proof of the effectiveness of the attack ads.
A portion of Herkimer County lies within the borders of the 21st Congressional District.
“Unlike the rest of this Congressional District, the towns in Herkimer that are in the 21st Congressional District do not get television from Albany, Plattsburgh or Watertown. They are covered in the Utica market. The SuperPACs and American Crossroads did not spend any money on Utica television. Residents in Herkimer County did not see any of their negative commercials,” Mr. Doheny wrote in a news release.
“The result — I won Herkimer County by a couple points in a close race. The facts speak for themselves,” he concluded.
However, the official election results do not confirm Mr. Doheny’s theory.
Ms. Stefanik won Herkimer County by two votes, 241-239.
That was the closest Mr. Doheny came to victory. Ms. Stefanik beat him handily in every other county, including his home county of Jefferson.
Ms. Stefanik, a 2006 Harvard graduate, works for her family’s Albany County-based plywood distribution business and lives in Willsboro.
The contentious primary election saw more than $1.2 million in outside money being spent on the race. American Crossroads, a super PAC founded by former George W. Bush associate Karl Rove spent more than $800,000 on ads expressly opposing Mr. Doheny.
Mr. Doheny, who was endorsed by the New York state Independence Party shortly after entering the race after Mr. Owens announced he would not seek re-election, remains on that party line, though he has not said whether he will campaign.
Ms. Stefanik has been endorsed by the state Conservative Party.
Ms. Stefanik will face Democrat Aaron G. Woolf, a documentary filmmaker with a home in Essex County, and Green Party candidate Matthew J. Funiciello, a bakery and cafe owner from Glens Falls, in November.
Republican Party primary results
21st Congressional District:
Clinton County Doheny 742 Stefanik 1,520
Essex County* Doheny 502 Stefanik 1,144
Franklin County Doheny 345 Stefanik 846
Fulton County Doheny 627 Stefanik 1,460
Hamilton County* Doheny 239 Stefanik 309
Herkimer County Doheny 239 Stefanik 241
Jefferson County Doheny 2,655 Stefanik 2,724
Lewis County Doheny 570 Stefanik 870
Saratoga County Doheny 1,136 Stefanik 1,820
St. Lawrence County Doheny 1,712 Stefanik 2,082
Warren County Doheny 1,041 Stefanik 2,032
Washington County Doheny 728 Stefanik 1,330
*Essex and Hamilton counties have not yet certified their official election results. Figures provided are unofficial results from election night.