Gail Goode is the sole remaining Democratic candidate running against Senator Kirsten Gillibrand in the party's primary this fall. One year ago, it appeared Gillibrand would have several challengers, including former Congressman Harold Ford, Jr., but pressure to stand down from the Democratic Party led Ford and others to abandon their plans.
Goode would do no such thing.
“I have been defending the City of New York in some capacity for 24 years,” said Goode, a deputy borough chief in the city's Tort Unit and longtime attorney who likes her primary chances, despite the long odds. “It may be my first foray into politics, but its not my first foray into public service.”
Goode made her legal career in the Bronx, where she was raised and lived for many years, following a stint in the Midwest. “Nobody ever gave me anything. I've had to work hard for everything,” said Goode.
She said working in the city's poorest borough prepared her to deal with complex urban problems like gun violence. “I've seen it up close and personal,” said Goode. “Trust me: the NRA will never get me.”
Gillibrand, once a staunch gun rights advocate who represented a conservative upstate congressional district, has struggled with the issue.
Gun rights, like other hot-button issues, play differently outside of the city, but Goode said she has connected with upstate voters. And everyone agrees on one thing: the need for more jobs and a sustained economic recovery.
Goode said creating jobs and funding transportation projects would be among her priorities if elected. First, she must beat Gillibrand in the September 14th primary.
Though her chances are slim, Goode said at least she's putting up a fight. “If you don't like me, vote me out [of the race],” she said. “But at least now New Yorkers have a choice.” (Daniel Bush)