Republican Comptroller Candidate Bob Antonacci

Here’s your chance to get to know the lesser-known candidate in the least-known statewide election of 2014.

With little money or name recognition, New York State Republican Comptroller nominee Robert Antonacci faces long odds in November against Democratic incumbent Tom DiNapoli.  A Siena College poll released today gives incumbent Tom DiNapoli a 58-24 advantage over Antonacci.  Antonacci, who goes by Bob, also faces a funding disadvantage, reporting just $75,000 on hand as of July 11th.

Antonacci is the first candidate to participate in New York State’s recently enacted campaign financing program.  Modeled after New York City’s campaign finance program, it applies only to candidates for state comptroller.  To receive any matching funds, however, a candidate must raise $200,000 from 2,000 New York donors contributing $10-$175 each.  As of July 11th, Antonacci’s total raised was well below half of that threshold amount and he may not qualify for any state matching funds, further limiting his already modest campaign.

An attorney and accountant, Antonacci was elected Onondaga County Comptroller in 2007, and is now in his 7th year in office.  He first ran for office in 2003, losing, but returned to run again and win in 2007, with reelection in 2011.  We recently spoke with Antonacci as he visited Breezy Point, at the tip of the Rockaway Peninsula, with Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino.  It was my first time meeting him and I began by asking how he came to first run for elective office.

P.S.  Antonacci is, as far we know, the only candidate with a human bobble head doppelgänger.  (His human bobble head doppelgänger also has a second twitter identity – the doppelganger’s doppelgänger perhaps.)  We only learned of this after our interview – we’ll be bringing you more on this soon.