Rep. Bill Owens, D-Plattsburgh, has found support in a Motor City-esque constituency: car dealers.
The New York State Automotive Dealers Association thanked Mr. Owens in an edition of the group's newsletter after Mr. Owens sponsored a House bill that cut regulations for them.
The bill repeals "a federal mandate that requires dealers to provide car buyers with a booklet comparing vehicle insurance repair costs upon request."
Car dealers argued that the mandate was unnecessary. It passed the House earlier this year, and goes to consideration in the Senate now.
And coincidentally — not making any connections here about car dealers being crafty business owners who know how to strike a deal — Mr. Owens has received donations from several car dealers in this election cycle.
John Backus of Mort Backus and Sons in Ogdensburg has donated $350 to Mr. Owens, according to the Federal Election Commission. William McBride Sr., owner of a Chevrolet and Subaru dealership in Plattsburgh, has donated $1,350. And Ronald G. Roberts of Riley Ford in Mooers has donated $650.
Mr. Owens also got much more than NADA from the National Automobile Dealers Association's PAC — $5,000, to be exact.
Mr. Owens faces Republican Matt Doheny of Watertown on Nov. 6. Both candidates have championed deregulation, with Mr. Doheny going further in his desire to cut government mandates — too far, Mr. Owens has argued.
Post-script: After this was written, I noticed that Maury Thompson noticed that Mr. Doheny got a $250 donation from a Syracuse-area car dealer, too.
Here's the state auto dealers' newsletter: