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Rachel Barnhart says she has the signatures needed to get on the congressional primary ballot

Rachel Barnhart, one of the people seeking the Democratic nomination for the congressional seat previously held by Louise Slaughter, says she has secured the required number of signatures to get on the primary ballot.

Barnhart, a former TV journalist who has also run for the NYS Assembly and Rochester Mayor in recent years, says that she also has a sufficient number of signatures to withstand legal scrutiny.

Any candidate would need to submit 1,250 signatures from registered Democrats by April 12 to get on the primary ballot. The date for the federal primaries in New York State is June 26.

In a statement released Wednesday night, Barnhart said, “We need an energetic and progressive candidate who can defeat Joe Morelle in June and the Republican candidate in November.” Morelle has the backing of Mayor Lovely Warren and some other top Democrats.

Morelle is the NYS Assembly Majority Leader. The Irondequoit Democrat has announced he is seeking the Democratic nomination for Congress. Other Democrats who have said they are considering running include Rochester Councilman Adam McFadden, Brighton Town Board member Robin Reynolds Wilt, and Rochester School Board President Van White.

James Maxwell is seeking the Republican nomination.  The 25th district seat became open when longtime Congresswoman Louise Slaughter died three weeks ago.

Governor Cuomo will have to call a special election to fill the remainder of Slaughter’s term which runs through 2018. He has not yet said when that will happen.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.