PEEKSKILL, N.Y. Thousands of people visited Peekskill this weekend as part of the Open Studios art event, and among them was their likely future representative in Congress.
Democratic Congress member for the 18th District Nita Lowey of Harrison was the guest of Peekskill Democrats Sunday afternoon. Following a private brunch meeting at the Birdsall House, the group, which included Lowey, Peekskill Democratic Party Chair Marina Ciotti, Mayor Mary Foster, Deputy Mayor Drew Claxton and Council members Marybeth McGowan, Cathy Talbot and Darren Rigger, walked through the downtown to talk with residents.
Peekskill is currently in the 19th Congressional District represented by Rep. Nan Hayworth (R-Mt. Kisco), but due to recent redistricting will become part of a new 17th District following this November election . Lowey said she hoped to remain in office to make Peekskill and other parts of northern Westchester part of her new, bigger district.
"I have 350,000 more people, but they've been very welcoming," Lowey said. "I've been visiting every community and talking to people and visiting stores and they've been very positive and hopefully they will vote for me so I can continue to serve."
Lowey made several stops in the downtown including an art studio and a senior living facility where she told a group of residents she was focused on not letting Congress vote to turn Medicare into a voucher program.
"Don't let people fool you," Lowey said. "Social security is solvent until 2037. There are a lot of things we can do there is a lot of fraud, a lot of waste there is a lot we can do. Could you just see a 60-year-old trying to buy health insurance in the private sector? Medicare is something you deserve, it's something you've earned and we have to protect it while we fix it."
Lowey said she supported the new federal policies that made health insurance mandatory for most adults and made it illegal to deny someone coverage due to a pre-existing condition.
"If you have a child with diabetes or autism or other illnesses, you can be cut out without this program," Lowey said.
Foster said having Lowey visit the city was important and said that city Democrats were excited at the prospect of being represented by the influential veteran Congresswoman.
"Having a Congresswoman that will fight for us along with Senator [Charles] Schumer, we think they would be a wonderful powerful duo for fighting on behalf of the city of Peekskill down in Washington," Foster said.
It was important for Lowey to get a good understanding of the city she may be representing by next January if she is re-elected, Foster said.
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