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Josh's Story

Josh Riley was born and raised in Endicott, New York. The four generations that came before him worked in the local factories, making shoes and boots at the Endicott-Johnson Shoe Company and computers in the IBM factories. Growing up in the Southern Tier, Josh was instilled with the promise of the Square Deal--the idea that if you work hard and play by the rules and treat others with dignity, then you can earn a place in the Middle Class. Unfortunately, for too many working families across Upstate New York, that promise has been broken. Josh is running for Congress to restore it.

Upstate New York experienced widespread unemployment and economic decline as plants closed and good manufacturing jobs disappeared. Josh delivered the local newspaper to his neighbors every morning, and it often had headlines about the latest round of layoffs, even as corporate profits soared. Many of Josh’s friends, family, and neighbors lost their jobs. Through adversity, though, Josh saw people pull together and push through.

The work ethic and values that Josh learned growing up in Endicott have guided his career. With student loans, savings from his newspaper route, and part-time work, Josh graduated from college and law school. Josh got his start in public service as a staff assistant in Congressman Maurice Hinchey’s office. As a policy analyst at the Labor Department and an attorney in legal aid clinics, he focused on programs for workers who lost jobs through no fault of their own.

After law school, Josh represented children with special needs and kids from working-class families in a landmark civil rights case to improve their access to healthcare services. Josh went on to serve as counsel on the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, where he fought back against big corporations that took advantage of workers and consumers, and he brought together Democrats and Republicans to enact legislation addressing public safety and public health issues. Josh has submitted bipartisan briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court, and he has been recognized nationally for his successful legal practice.

One thing Josh is not: a politician. This is Josh’s first time running for public office, and he’s doing it because he believes the purpose of public service is to improve the lives of others, not to enrich oneself. Upstate New Yorkers deserve a representative who will work for them, not the special interests that line politicians’ pockets. Josh is refusing corporate PAC money and is instead relying on grassroots supporters, like you.

And Josh plans to go to Congress and do things differently. Upstate New York was sold out by a culture of greed on Wall Street and a culture of corruption in Congress, where out-of-touch career politicians from both parties have failed working families. Josh will fight every day for neighborhoods like the one he grew up in, bringing people together to strengthen the Middle Class, revitalize the economy, and invest in good jobs for the future.

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