OLEAN — New York State Libertarian Party Chairman Larry Sharpe was in Olean Sunday to meet with local party officials and to announce 14 party endorsements in Cattaraugus County races.

Two Republicans were cross-endorsed: Chautauqua County Executive George Borrello for state Senate and Matt Swenson for Salamanca City Court judge.

Four Democrats were also cross-endorsed: Alan Bernstein for county clerk, John Crawford and Adam Jester in County Legislature District 8 and Paul “Pab” Sungenis for Olean City Council Ward 4.

Also, eight registered Libertarians were also endorsed on the Libertarian line: Cattaraugus County Libertarian Party Chairman Luke Wenke for county coroner, Kevin Bartholomew for Olean City Council Ward 2, Matt Peterson-Volz for County Legislature District 8, Anthony Costa for County Legislature District 7, Chad Neal and Abram Stanczowski for County Legislature District 3, and Damian Stokes and Jeremy Kasperek for County Legislature District 5.

Wenke, who welcomed Sharpe to the rally in Lincoln Park Sunday where endorsements were announced, said, “We can absolutely win and break the two-party dictatorship here in Cattaraugus County.”

Wenke said the visit by Sharpe, the 2018 New York Libertarian Party gubernatorial candidate was meant “to demonstrate support for the efforts of the Cattaraugus County Libertarian Party’s candidates running in local elections all across this county in 2019.”

The Cattaraugus County Libertarian Party “has produced the most original Libertarian candidates for local office than any other Libertarian county party in New York state has because the CCLP is not a pawn party for the Republicans or Democrats like the Conservative, Independence, or Working Families parties are,” Wenke said.

“It is its own party with its own original cause,” Wenke said of the local Libertarian Party. “It is an almost 50-year-old party and it keeps growing all across the country. Many of our local candidates have great traction in their jurisdictions.”

Wenke said Cattaraugus County is being noticed by the national Libertarian spotlight simply by focusing on local races.

“We in this county are showing America how to beat the two-party system locally,” he said.

Wenke said the Cattaraugus County Libertarian Party plans a debate among Libertarian candidates for president on Nov. 9 at Olean High School, followed by the New York Libertarian Party Summit the following day at The Old Library in Olean.

(Contact reporter Rick Miller at rmiller@olean timesherald.com. Follow him on Twitter, @RMillerOTH)