Jess J. Present

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Jess J. Present
Member of the New York State Assembly
from the 150th district
In office
January 1, 1967 – December 31, 1968
Preceded by Frank Walkley
Succeeded by John W. Beckman
Personal details
Born July 28, 1921
Jamestown, New York
Died August 8, 1998(1998-08-08) (aged 77)
Political party Republican
Alma mater Allegheny College
Profession politician

Jess J. Present (July 28, 1921 – August 8, 1998) was an American politician from New York.


He was born on July 28, 1921, in Jamestown, Chautauqua County, New York. He attended Jamestown High School and Allegheny College. During World War II he served in the U.S. Army Air Force. Afterwards he became a jeweler. He married Elaine Coates,[1] and they had two sons.

He was a member of the New York State Assembly from 1966 to 1968, sitting in the 176th and 177th New York State Legislatures.

He was a member of the New York State Senate from 1969 until his death in 1998, sitting in the 178th, 179th, 180th, 181st, 182nd, 183rd, 184th, 185th, 186th, 187th, 188th, 189th, 190th, 191st and 192nd New York State Legislatures.

Present almost lost his 1992 re-election campaign to his Democratic opponent Nancy Bargar after machine ballots showed Bargar ahead by 900 votes. However, after counting absentee ballots and performing a machine recount, Present was declared the winner by 190 votes.[2] Present was hurt in the general election by having Republican Assemblyman John W. Hasper win nine percent of the vote as the Conservative nominee. Hasper had lost the Republican primary to Present in September 1992.

Shortly after his election scare in 1992, Present was chosen as Deputy Majority Leader. Present was closely allied with Rockefeller Republican Ralph J. Marino during his time as senator. In 1994, after the Republican Revolution saw George Pataki elected governor against Marino's wishes, Marino was ousted as Majority Leader and replaced with Joseph Bruno. Present left as Deputy Majority Leader in January 1995 when Bruno chose one of his allies for the post.

Present died on August 8, 1998, in Bemus Point, New York.[3]


  1. ^ New York Red Book (1970–1971; pg. 103)
  2. ^ A Recount Lets Senator Retain Seat in the New York Times on November 24, 1992
  3. ^ Jess J. Present, 77, Legislator and G.O.P. Leader in the ]]New York Times]] on August 11, 1998
New York Assembly
Preceded by
new district
New York State Assembly
164th District

Succeeded by
district abolished
Preceded by
Frank Walkley
New York State Assembly
150th District

Succeeded by
John W. Beckman
New York State Senate
Preceded by
James F. Hastings
New York State Senate
57th District

Succeeded by
William Stachowski
Preceded by
William Stachowski
New York State Senate
56th District

Succeeded by
Patricia McGee