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NY-22 congressional primary ballot: Democrat Sarah Klee Hood says she has experience the district needs

Sarah Klee Hood posing outside.
Democratic primary congressional candidate Sarah Klee Hood says she brings the lived experience voters are looking for.

Enrolled democrats in the new 22nd congressional district have four candidates to choose from in the upcoming primary. Early voting begins August 13.

Democrat Sarah Klee Hood is the only woman in the race and said she has the lived and professional experience the district needs. Klee Hood and her husband are working full time, raising two daughters.

“I just felt that we weren’t putting fourth candidates that actually represents what it looks like to live here in Central New York," Hood said, "That are truly tied to the community, invested in the community, and want what's best for the community. And, so here I am."

The air force veteran attended Syracuse University using the GI bill and was first in her family to earn a college degree, an MBA.

She's dipped her toe in politics as a DeWitt town councilor, and that's where she realized she wanted to do more.

“When I was knocking doors for my town race, it became very clear that the issue’s at our most local community level, far exceed the purview of town board and those are federal issues. It's the cost of healthcare, the cost of child care, the cost of aging in place. Retirement is slipping away for so many of our older Americans,” Klee Hood said.

Klee Hood wants to preserve civil and reproductive rights. She’s also focused on jobs and the economy through her work on environmental climate policy. She said she is aware of the broader needs of the diverse district.

The newly drawn 22nd covers Onondaga, as well as rural Madison, and Oneida Counties.

“It’s understanding that we need to increase the jobs market out there. We need to have a rule transportation system, that ties this into a larger ecosystem of transportation. We need to have affordable housing that will be able to transition off of natural gas and fossil fuels. It's highly expensive. Why aren’t we talking about that financial gap between the fossil fuels and bridging over to electricity,” Klee Hood said.

Klee Hood said attention also needs to be given to rural school districts, which are facing a funding crisis as their population declines.

Three other democrats are also in the race: Chol Majok, Francis Conole, and Sam Roberts.

Scott Willis covers politics, local government, transportation, and arts and culture for WAER. He came to Syracuse from Detroit in 2001, where he began his career in radio as an intern and freelance reporter. Scott is honored and privileged to bring the day’s news and in-depth feature reporting to WAER’s dedicated and generous listeners. You can find him on twitter @swillisWAER and email him at