Paul Newell, one of the young challengers to Sheldon Silver for his Assembly seat (Luke Henry is the other), made a shocking announcement yesterday: he raised much more than Silver — $40,015 vs. $19,575 — in “the most recent filing period.” Most of these Silver donations, his campaign points out, come from small, individual contributors, whereas Silver’s come mostly from PACs and lobbyists. Among these the Newellites mention “Albany Lobbyist William Y. Crowell, III,” one of whose clients is “Forest City Ratner — which has benefitted from Silver’s strong support for its Atlantic Yards and Beekman Tower projects.”
Of course, since the last Assembly election, Friends of Silver has taken in $406,854.93, while in the same period Friends of Paul Newell — which admittedly didn’t get a dime before his parents, Roger Newell and Judith Evans, kicked in $3,800 each in November 2007 — has amassed $78,578.92. And the New York Observer reports that Silver has a $2.9 million dollar funding edge on Newell.
Still, youthful energy and enthusiasm count for something in the 11th hour. Newell told us around 11:30 last night that he’d started his day at 6:30 am and was still working on getting the word out, and he and his “teams of volunteers” would keep at it till election day.