In an article on May 29th, the Binghamton Press & Sun highlighted the Republican primary candidates that are battling for the Congressional seat. This is essentially the election as there is no Democrat candidate, and thus no opposition in November.
In that article, Rep. Richard Hanna, the current incumbent, is summed by the first sentence
“Rep. Richard Hanna acknowledges his political views probably don’t play as well among Republican primary voters as they do among the broader spectrum of 22nd Congressional District residents who will vote in November’s general election.”
First, the NY-22 is predominately a Republican and Conservative district. So much so that Democrats gave up on their party members in the district – possibly because the burden to combat the unpopular Obamacare, and the numerous scandals of the Obama Administration, would ensure defeat in this very red district among the deep blue that New York State is characterized as.
Thus, Rep. Richard Hanna’s admission that Republicans are so upset that he envisions difficulty winning their votes implies directly that the majority of the district opposes his views. It also clarifies a key point – if Rep. Hanna’s voting record angers Republicans it means his record does not represent the district. In other words Rep. Hanna isn’t doing what the people want in Congress, he is doing what he wants. That isn’t why he was elected.
Second, without another candidate in opposition, the public only has a choice of not voting at all in November – which would still allow the Republican primary winner to be elected to Congress. Thus to defer to the November election is to play the public as fools, by inferring a choice that does not exist, as Rep. Hanna well knows.
But moving further along in the article I want to highlight another major item.
“Hanna said he won’t debate Tenney…”
I stop right there because why he won’t debate is meaningless. Rep. Hanna has an obligation to debate a challenger. It is a core principle of America. It is the freedom of the people to peacefully evaluate the candidates and choose the best choice for them. This is a major distinction between America and the governments of most of the rest of the world.
Rep. Hanna does not have the right to unilaterally decide who and if he will debate a challenger. That choice was made when petitions were signed and the people of the NY-22 decided that they wanted to hear another voice for the Republican primary. The public that Rep. Hanna was elected to serve, by virtue of the petitions signed, asked for a debate – no elected politician seeking to preserve their position gets to arbitrarily override their boss, the public.
Which brings up a question. Why is Rep. Hanna hiding from the public? Given he has said,
“I am happy to get out and debate issues, talk to people about my record between now and November and defend it.”
So if he is happy to defend his record, why is he refusing to do it? If he is willing to talk about his record, or claims that it is being misrepresented, why is he unwilling to submit to the will of the public and have a debate to showcase his record. If his record is a reflection of the people’s will, wouldn’t that ensure that he would win re-election?
Unless that’s not what the record will show once on display. Unless Rep. Hanna believes that to debate what he has done will ensure he loses re-election. If that is the case, then his defiance of the will of the people makes perfect sense.
But that still isn’t the way America does things.
Read the article, look at the voting records, check on the flip-flops and inconsistency from what has been said on the campaign trail and the voting record for yourself. Come to the conclusion you believe is right.
This is about asking the questions,