BUFFALO, N.Y. — Gov. Kathy Hochul confirmed Saturday that special elections to fill vacancies in the 19th and 23rd U.S. congressional districts will be held August 23, on the same say as the congressional primaries.
The announcement comes one day after U.S. Rep. Chris Jacobs, a Republican representing the 27th District, said he would not seek re-election in New York's newly formed 23rd congressional district.
On May 27, Jacobs had announced support for gun reforms, saying that if there was a bill to ban assault weapons, he would support it. He also wanted to explore limiting the capacity of magazines on guns, and to consider increasing the age to own a weapon to 21.
On Memorial Day, he reiterated the need for change following shootings that happened on May 14 at the Tops Market on Jefferson Avenue in Buffalo and the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas.
"We need to talk about some reasonable gun control, if an assault weapon ban were put on the floor I would vote for it," Jacobs said Monday. "I don't think it's going to happen so I will fight for other things too."
Then on Friday, Jacobs said he decided not to see re-election after receiving criticism for changing his stance on gun control. He said it led to every Republican elected official withdrawing their support, as well as many Republican and Conservative committees.
The special elections were created after Antonio Delgado and Tom Reed decided to resign. Delgado was sworn in as New York’s lieutenant governor on May 25, and Reed had previously announced his decision to step away from politics.
"With the resignations of Congressmembers Delgado and Reed, I am declaring a special election to fill these vacancies and ensure continued representation for the residents of the 19th and 23rd Congressional Districts," Governor Hochul said in a statement on Saturday.
"I look forward to developing a productive relationship with the next representatives from the 19th and 23rd congressional districts as we work together to deliver for New York in our nation's capital."