Victor Builder Makes Run for Governor
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Ed Dunn owns a home building and excavation company. He is also a corporate real estate broker.
The 54-year-old father of four moved to Rochester from Massachusetts 28 years ago.
Now, without any political experience or official party endorsements, the longtime Republican wants New Yorkers to elect him governor.
"I'm just the average person out there. I'm a common guy," Dunn said during an interview with YNN.
He launched his campaign for governor one month ago.
There were no news conferences or formal party endorsements – just a campaign web site, Facebook page, phone calls to party leaders and state representatives, and lots of travel.
"I went out amongst the people,” Dunn said, “Listened to their words. And I've had people come up and cry after they talked to me and this is true, this very true, I've told some of the party leaders out there about these statements and they laughed. And I said, ‘How dare you laugh.'"
Dunn said their stories are why he is running, and he has a story of his own.
This past year, Dunn's son was diagnosed with cancer. His wife's mother passed away and he said the economy forced him to sell his home.
"I do whatever it takes. I'm a very aggressive person. I'm not the kind of person that's gonna lay down and cry or die or walk away," said Dunn.
Dunn said he has no intentions of becoming a career politician.
He only wants to serve one term. He believes he could broker a deal between Democrats and Republicans.
"I'm a business person. In order to come here with nothing to Rochester and build up a business to a multi-million dollar business you have to know something. You have to be able to negotiate, work with people and organize and coordinate," said Dunn.
Dunn calls former Republican Congressman Rick Lazio “unimpressive.”
He said Steve Levy is a "tremendous disappointment who turned his back on his party."
Dunn believes the past and a few questionable e-mails will come back to haunt Tea Party favorite Carl Paladino.
As for expected Democratic candidate State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, "He represents a machine that can't reach over to the other side. It's a machine that is so rusty and old and broken down. He brings along with him the good boys club, a country club position. I'm asking to go in there and act on behalf of the people to get the job done right," said Dunn.
To get his name on the ballot in the primary, Dunn must collect 15,000 signatures between June 8 and mid-July. Voters in at least half of the states 29 congressional districts must be represented.
"A lot of people think, well why aren't you getting signature right now? You can't. You can't. They've set the system up to keep you and I out," said Dunn.
Dunn said he has significant financial commitments for his campaign, but to date, nothing has been deposited in his war chest.
"I don't take people's money haphazardly. When I start collecting the money people have promised me I will spend it wisely," Dunn said.
He said he will start spending when his “message gets out there the right way.” Edmund Dunn