On June 22, 2016, candidate Steve Wells appeared in a live chat format sponsored by Syracuse.com. Scheduled to start at noon, some 16 people checked into the website to ask questions of the NY-22 Republican candidate. Most were disappointed, as Steve Wells ignored and avoided the majority of questions asked of him.
Of the 41 questions that were asked (not including at least 4 questions that the moderator Mark Weiner deleted that we observed) only 15 received some form of answer, most were repeat questions from the same individual. The nature of the questions answered can be summed up in the following quoted question:
Mr. Wells, is it true that you are actually a world skeet champion? If so, wow that’s impressive!”
The result was that virtually all substantive questions, including 7 by Michael Vasquez, went unanswered. The following is the exact quote of what was reported on the event on June 22, 2016 in realtime while the event was ongoing:
“So to be fair, after waiting an hour and being skipped until I started posting on Facebook, Mr. Wells answered my first question
“Mr. Wells, you consistently state you have an “A” rating with the NRA, but that is factually incorrect as you have an “Aq” rating as the NRA website shows – along with endorsement of Claudia Tenney. Can you explain why you continue to misstate this in advertisements and debates?”
SteveWells 2 minutes ago
@MVass The reason the NRA gives out the endorsement of Aq is because I am not a politician, unlike my opponents, I have not run for office before. I have the highest rating someone who has not held political office can get from the NRA. I might point out to you that Assemblywoman Tenney did not achieve an A+, which is the highest rating from the NRA that an elected official can receive.
My response –
“MVass 1 minute ago
@SteveWells @MVass That does not answer the question I asked. You do not have an “A” rating. Isn’t this misleading.
Facebook post comment: Michael Vasquez – Since the event is over, and Mr. Wells never replied back (though he is welcome to as he has my number and email) I am left with the thought that Mr. Wells is ok with misleading the public on facts he knows to be untrue. There is your hopeful congressman for you”
Thus we concluded, and provide for the public how candidate Steve Wells approaches his constituents. Whether that is the proper way to address concerns or not, is up to voters on June 28, 2016.