One-Time Political Foe Endorses Matthew Ryan for Broome County DA
Former Binghamton Mayor Matthew Ryan's campaign for Broome County district attorney is getting backing from an unexpected source.
Victor Furman, a Chenango Forks man who describes himself as a "hardcore Republican," has announced he is endorsing Ryan, a Democrat.
The two men met Thursday afternoon at Davy's Last Chance Saloon in Chenango Forks. The tavern was the scene of a highly-publicized dispute between Furman and Ryan almost exactly nine years ago. They'd been arguing about fracking and other political issues when things got heated.
The two have since patched things up and they are now on friendly terms. Ryan said when Furman told him he'd support him in the district attorney's race against Paul Battisti, he suggested they get together at Davy's
Furman said he's backing Ryan because of the issues of "checks and balances." He cited Broome County Sheriff Fred Akshar's strong support for Battisti in the Republican nomination. Battisti defeated incumbent district attorney Michael Korchak in the June primary.
Furman said he believes Battisti would not have won the nomination without the backing of Akshar. He expressed concern that the offices of district attorney and sheriff would not be sufficiently independent of each other if Battisti and Akshar were in charge.
Ryan said he was pleased to receive Furman's support in the campaign, although they continue to disagree on many political issues.
A charge of harassment filed against Ryan in connection with the 2014 dispute at Davy's ultimately was dropped by a town justice.
Battisti's campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the endorsement announcement.