Seven weeks after declaring his candidacy, Republican Kyle Van De Water is no longer looking to challenge U.S. Rep. Antonio Delgado, D-19, in 2022 in an attempt to flip the district.
Van De Water, 41, of Millbrook, was the first person to announce he will run against Delgado, declaring his intent to run July 12. Delgado was elected to a second term last November with 192,100 votes to Van De Water’s 151,475.
Van De Water announced on social media Aug. 27 that he was no longer able to give “110%” to the race in light of unspecified life changes.
“I have been truly humbled by and will be forever grateful for all of the support I have received these past few years. It has been an honor getting to meet so many of you as I traveled across the district,” Van De Water said. “For the good of the party, and the district, I have decided to withdraw my candidacy. I look forward to vigorously and enthusiastically supporting the GOP candidate in 2022.”
Van De Water’s campaign did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The 19th District encompasses all of Columbia, Greene, Delaware, Otsego, Schoharie, Sullivan and Ulster counties, and parts of Broome, Dutchess, Montgomery and Rensselaer counties.
In the last contest, Delgado’s campaign raised $5.9 million compared to Van De Water’s $153,900 effort. In a statement of concession on social media in November 2020, Van De Water foreshadowed another go at the seat.
“Congratulations to Rep. Delgado on his victory in this hard-fought campaign. We live in divisive times and I am proud of the fact that we kept the campaign and debates civil and focused on the issues. I am looking forward to the rematch in 2022,” Van De Water said.
Delgado’s campaign did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
A major in the U.S. Army, Van De Water went on active duty in 2006 and completed one tour in Afghanistan. He served as a judicial advocate in the Judge Advocate General’s Corps. Van De Water was discharged in 2014 and remains in the U.S. Army Reserves.
He is a former Millbrook village trustee. A graduate of Albany Law School, Van De Water is a trial and litigation attorney with Corbally, Gartland & Rappleyea in Poughkeepsie.
“With your help, I will have the resources this cycle to deliver that message to those I could not personally meet in the last election,” Van De Water published in a post on Facebook and Twitter to announce his 2022 candidacy. “I am excited to demonstrate that I am the right person for the job and to once again earn your votes. We are going to win!!!”
Delgado’s campaign highlighted the congressman’s accomplishments since he was elected in 2018, flipping the swing district blue for the first time since 2011 in a 4% lead over Republican U.S. Rep. John Faso of Kinderhook.
“As promised, Antonio Delgado has fought for our region day in and day out and achieved meaningful results,” according to a statement from the Delgado for Congress Campaign at the time. “He has held 60 town halls and crisscrossed all 11 counties in our upstate district many times over. He has had 12 bills signed into law under Democratic and Republican administrations and secured over $400 million in direct support for our counties, towns and villages. He looks forward to continuing that work every single day.”
Candidates running in 2022 cannot start petitioning or gathering signatures until after Jan. 1, according to the state Board of Elections. Petitions must be filed in the spring before the June primary. A date has not been set.
Van De Water hoped he would be victorious next November by starting to campaign earlier after receiving the support of 150,000 voters with a significantly less expensive 2020 campaign than Delgado’s.
“In the face of great odds, as a first-time candidate in the midst of a global pandemic and despite being outspent by a historic 25-1 margin, I earned the support of over 150,000 people,” Van De Water said in his initial social media post. “For weeks the race was too close to call and the margin on Election Day was miniscule. Why? Because we had the better message.”
Van De Water’s message and platform in running for the 19th District had remained unchanged.
“I am going to fight every day to lower taxes, create jobs, keep your families and communities safe, improve the education system and bring broadband and better cell service to the district,” he said.