State and national Republicans, who have vowed to recruit and support more women for public office, may have found their strongest contender just outside of Buffalo.
In just two months, conservative Beth Parlato shattered expectations by raising an astounding $270,000 in her bid to replace Chris Collins in New York’s 27th District.
“I’ve been a part of this community my entire life," Parlato said. "I’m humbled by the generosity and support our campaign has received so far."
Parlato’s fundraising haul is especially impressive because, while traditional sources of Republican funding stayed on the sidelines before Congressman Collins announced his resignation, she managed to unearth an entirely new donor base within the district that had never given to a Congressional candidate before.
With all of these new Republican donors on her first filing, Parlato has established herself as a firebrand with a unique ability to expand and build out the party. According to the first-time political candidate, she has only just scratched the surface.
“We still have big fundraising events ahead of us so I’m very confident we’ll have the resources to run an aggressive campaign,” she said.
Parlato, a former judge and frequent Fox News contributor, gives Republicans their most credible opportunity to elect a conservative woman to Congress.
“We’re organized, we’re funded and we have tremendous support from our community. That sets us up. I’m conservative and I live in the district. That’s what sets us apart,” noting that she is the only announced candidate who actually lives in the 27th District.
The resignation of Congressman Collins will require Governor Cuomo to call a special election to fill the vacancy. Republican leaders from the eight counties in the district must choose their party’s nominee – a process that will certainly test the GOP commitment to recruiting more women to run for office.
“I’m the only female in the race, but what I think matters more to Republican voters is that I’m the only conservative in the race,” Parlato said.