by Wendy Kagan
On fracking, many candidates express caution and a desire to "wait for the science" before they weigh in with a clear stance. This is the approach of Democratic gubernatorial incumbent Mario Cuomo. His Republican challenger, Rob Astorino, is pro-fracking; he says it can bolster upstate's sagging economy. Green Party contender Howie Hawkins takes a strong stance against fracking, pledging to ban the practice, which has the potential to contaminate our drinking water and damage the environment.
Obama's Affordable Care Act doesn't really impact the gubernatorial race, as these candidates don't vote on the issue. (They do have a say on Medicaid, though - and Cuomo's ads have attacked Astorino's proposals to cut dental services and prescription drug coverage for seniors.) When it comes to Congressional races, candidates express varied views on Obamacare; in my district, Republican incumbent Chris Gibson has voted against it multiple times.
Abortion rights have been a tug-of-war issue since Roe v. Wade in the 1970s. Cuomo vows to support a woman's right to choose; so does Sean Eldridge, the Democratic challenger to Gibson in my district. Gibson says he wants to limit abortion to pregnancies at 20 weeks (instead of 24, as it currently stands).
Find out where the candidates in your area stand - and vote for your health on Tuesday!