City Councilman Says Opponent’s Comments Served As Political Attack

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JAMESTOWN – A Jamestown City Councilman is calling out one of his opponents for issuing a statement that he believes was a political attack against him.

At-Large Councilmember Jeff Russell (R) spoke after a Democrat opponent, Christina Cardinale, expressed her support for the Los Contrincantes Car Club and Bike Crew Car Show Monday evening during its Work Session. Cardinale mentioned how Russell and Councilman Brent Sheldon previously voted in favor of the club’s Special Events Permit before a series of complaints led to talks of a permit altering or complete revocation.

Russell says that Cardinale was using the car show discussion as a chance to further her campaign for an At-Large seat in November.

“Any time she (Cardinale) has a possibility to come at me, that’s something she often does, and that’s fine. I understand that, that’s politics,” Russell said, noting that he’s asked for amendments to the permit due to concerns of potentially having hundreds of vehicles playing music all at one time.

“That would be a problem for the neighborhood,” Russell said. “That would be a problem for the residents. So what Ms. Cardinale is telling you now, is that she’s okay with 700, 800 cars playing music all at one time from 11 p.m. to 2:30. That’s unreasonable.”

WNY News Now reached out to Cardinale for her response to Russell’s comments. She says that her comments weren’t intended to be politically charged but, rather a “point of reference,” and she welcomes anything that Russell says.

“Any comment, or any reference, I made during my portion of my speech, or the words that I used, I only addressed the Councilmembers as a form of reference,” Cardinale said, doubling down on her goal to point out Russell and Sheldon’s previous vote. “Most importantly, thank you so much to Councilman Russell for mentioning the campaign repeatedly. I’m very flattered that he would follow the campaign and know that I’m a candidate and honesty, I’m very, very humbled and happy to hear that he considers me a serious contender.”

Cardinale and Russell are running against Republicans Kim Ecklund (incumbent) and Randall Daversa and Democrats Ellen Ditonto and Alyssa Porter, with the top three vote-getters receiving a seat on the Council.


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