Charles Schumer

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

Surrounded by dozens of central New York firefighters in Syracuse on Wednesday, Sen. Charles Schumer launched a push to create a national firefighter cancer registry.  

The idea is to get a closer look at a cancer risk Schumer said can be double that of others because of exposure to toxic chemicals.

It used to be a badge of honor for a firefighter to come back to the station with a dirty, charred uniform. No more, according to Syracuse firefighter Mike Valenti.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News File Photo

With less than three weeks before Election Day, Hillary Clinton is even further ahead of Donald Trump in New York state, and that could affect downballot races, including seats for the state Senate.

Clinton is 24 points ahead of Trump, at 54 percent to 30 percent, a jump from when Siena College did a survey in September. Spokesman Steve Greenberg said the biggest change is independents moving over to the Democratic presidential candidate’s camp. A two-point lead among independents for Clinton has grown to a 17-point lead.

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The Libertarian Party is trying to make a name this political season, which has disaffected some voters from the major political parties. Alex Merced believes a Libertarian option gives him an edge in a race against incumbent Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY).

Merced jumped in the race against Schumer in what he calls a “weird political year.” And he points to the ease of getting signatures to get on the ballot as a sign that this year will work to his advantage.

Office of U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY)

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) is releasing details of a crowdsourcing survey he has taken of his constituents, to show what he says are too many "dead zones" for cell phones throughout the state.

Schumer says upstate NY residents have reported more than 4,000 cell phone dead zones scattered throughout upstate.

Schumer says this is happening despite the fact cell phone companies are reporting full coverage in some of these areas.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

  Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) is calling on the Federal Highway Administration and the New York State Department of Transportation to unlock funds for the city of Utica to use in a new project. The funds were frozen because they were earmarked for a different project that never went through.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) is pushing for legislation that would ban 22 chemicals used for making synthetic drugs. The Upstate New York Poison Center reported 500 cases involving synthetic marijuana and similar drugs in 2015. The majority of those cases occurred in Onondaga County which also had six deaths in 2015 linked to synthetic drugs.

Onondaga County Health Commissioner Dr. Indu Gupta said some of the side effects include increased heart rate, respiratory failure, paranoia and bizarre behavior.  

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) added his voice to a chorus of criticism regarding Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s comments to the Muslim parents of an Army captain killed in Iraq.

“We ought to revere our Gold Star mothers,” Schumer said. “We ought to praise them. We are to not be criticizing them. My heart goes out to these people who made the ultimate sacrifice and criticism of them is very, very wrong.”

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News File Photo


Foreign trade deals are a contentious issue at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY), weighed in Wednesday, saying he’s against the Trans-Pacific Partnership proposal, known as the TPP.

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New York state will have a big presence at this week’s Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. Among the politicians who will speak from the podium, the state’s two senators.

Karen DeWitt / WRVO News

Wendy Long, the Republican candidate for Senate running against Sen. Charles Schumer, faces great odds in her campaign against the powerful and popular third-term senator. Long made her case when she addressed the New York delegation to the Republican National Convention Tuesday.

It’s the second time that Wendy Long is running for Senate. She lost to incumbent Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand four years ago, by 46 points, the largest margin of defeat for any statewide candidate in New York, ever.

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The last time Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) campaigned in Syracuse, he did so on behalf of his own presidential bid. Even though he has not yet conceded the race to Secretary Hillary Clinton, he spoke on Friday about his desire to shape the future of the party as an advocate rather than a candidate.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) is working on breaking through the military bureaucracy to get the name of a Syracuse man and others who were involved in a naval accident 47 years ago on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

Larry Reilly, Sr. says it was as simple as turning the wrong way in the South China Sea in June 1969. The USS Frank E. Evans, a Navy Destroyer, was hit in the middle of the night by an Australian aircraft carrier.

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Republican Wendy Long is taking another shot at running for U.S. Senate in New York state. The conservative lawyer from New York City lost a race against Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand four years ago in a landslide. This year, she’s taking on the man who could become the next Democratic Party leader in the Senate, Charles Schumer.

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There’s less than three weeks to go before congressional primary day in New York state. In tthe 24th District, the Democratic primary race is between Colleen Deacon, Eric Kingson and Steven Williams. This week, Deacon had some high profile supporters in town to boost her campaign. And she offered a hint of what a campaign against incumbent Republican Rep. John Katko would look like, if she wins the nomination.

Sen. Charles Schumer led things off outside Sunshine’s Coffee Shop in DeWitt.

Martina Yach / Flickr

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) is pushing legislation that would help school districts deal with old pipes that are leaching lead into school’s water systems.

Schumer says the $20 million federal grant program was included in the Water Resource Development Act. He says it’s necessary because school districts need help to test water for lead.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News file photo

President Barack Obama has announced the biggest expansion of U.S. ground troops in Syria since the civil war there began. And that’s not sitting well with Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY).

The U.S. will deploy 250 special forces troops to help militia fighters in Syria. Schumer is leery about the operation.

"We have good fighting forces who can do the job -- the Kurds in particular. And we should not get into one of these snares, where first we have 200 troops, then 500 troops, then 5,000 troops,” Schumer.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

Health officials in central New York this week have announced that three people in Onondaga County and one in Oneida County have tested positive for the Zika virus. Officials say all four people contracted the virus while traveling outside the country, none were hospitalized, and there is no risk to the public. 

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Last weekend’s Luke Bryan concert at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse put the spotlight on a common problem that plagues venues and concert goers across the state and nation -- computer hackers that buy up hundreds of tickets early, then resell them online for a hefty profit.

More than 36,000 people jammed the Carrier Dome Saturday night to see country star Luke Bryan, some of them paying $750 for $75 tickets. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) says that’s not right.

Restrictive new rules could hurt dairy farmers

Mar 31, 2016
Matt Richmond / WSKG News File Photo

Upstate New York's dairy industry could suffer a serious blow if Canada imposes new, restrictive trade rules, says Sen. Charles Schumer and many regional dairy producers.

Schumer met with members of Western New York's O-AT-KA Milk, which exported more than $19 million in ultra-filtered milk and other milk products to Canada last year. The Canadian government is reportedly weighing new rules that would limit the amount of imported milk products used there to make cheese.

Julia Botero / WRVO News


Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY), sporting protective ear plugs to block out the whirling of machines, shakes hands with workers on the factory floor of New York Air Brake in Watertown. It's the senator's first visit to the company, which has made brake systems for the railroad industry for over a century.

As Schumer pauses to study the heavy metal contraptions that make trains stop and slow down, company officials explain what he’s seeing. 

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) is pushing for legislation to give the developmentally disabled more living options. He is proposing to give those living at home the same benefits that those in institutional care get. The disabled may currently be paying high out-of-pocket insurance costs for in-home services because of how current laws operate.


If the owner of the James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant refuses to keep the facility open, can the state force it to? That's the question after FitzPatrick owner Entergy has rejected several offers to help keep the financially stressed plant from closing in January. The company says it's too late, but some think the state may not need Entergy's approval.

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Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) is calling on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to assist Ithaca schools after some of its drinking water tested positive for elevated lead levels.

Schumer legislation tackles lead poisoning

Feb 23, 2016
Veronica Volk / WXXI News

Elizabeth Gilliam-Mayo bought a house in Rochester with the intent of running a daycare, but before she could open her business, she found hazardous levels of lead in the infrastructure.

"I bought the house in 2014 not realizing the dangers that were in here. All of these windows have been replaced, the exterior, the whole house has been rehabbed."

Gilliam-Mayo says she wouldn't have been able to do the work to remove the lead without grant money that came from the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News File Photo

Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus) said the Republican-controlled Senate should hold a hearing for any Supreme Court Candidate President Barack Obama nominates to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia. Katko said the process should work as directed in the U.S. Constitution.

"Let the Senate weigh it out if it gets to them, but I don't think there should be any block from doing it," Katko said. "I think if they want to present someone, let them do it. But, it may be an exercise in futility unless it's someone that's appealing to everyone."

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

Senate Democrats are crisscrossing their states this week looking for support for proposed legislation that would help students saddled with college debt. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) asked students at Syracuse University Monday to lobby lawmakers to support the "In the Red Debt Free College" proposal.

Flanked by students in SU’s Eggers Hall, Schumer proclaimed that a college education in this day and age is a necessity, but is being priced as a luxury, breaking the bank for students and families across the state.

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U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) says Republican suggestions to hold off approval of a new Supreme Court justice until next year will tie the court in knots. After the sudden death of Justice Antonin Scalia this weekend, President Barack Obama will have to nominate a new justice for a court that is now, which is split evenly on ideological lines. With Scalia, the court leaned conservative 5-4.

While in Syracuse today, Schumer said the Senate should at least consider a nominee.

Members of an anti-drug nonprofit  in Watertown head to Capitol Hill this week. The group wants U.S. Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Chuck Schumer to help fight the heroin crisis and the ways its affecting Jefferson County. 

Since 2011, there have been 79 deaths caused by heroin and opiate overdose in Jefferson County.

Anita Seefried-Brown’s own son died of a heroin overdose a day after he turned  33. He left a young daughter behind.

She says addiction is a disease, and it hurts more than just friends and families of the addicted.

Office of Assemblyman Brindisi

Congressional races for New York's 22nd and 24th Districts are beginning to take shape. 

Utica-area Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi announced Thursday that he will not run to replace retiring Rep. Richard Hanna (R-Barneveld). The Democratic Assemblyman said in a statement that he can do more for the Mohawk Valley region by staying in the New York Legislature.

Alex Crichton / WXXI News

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) says terrorist organizations are using social media to recruit members, so the federal government must double down on its efforts to monitor their online recruiting methods.

He was in Rochester Tuesday to push for passage of the Combat Terrorist Use of Social Media Act, which has already passed the House.