NY22: Hanna Wins Out in Contentious Primary

NY22: Hanna Wins Out in Contentious Primary

NY22: Hanna Wins Out in Contentious Primary
June 25, 2014

Despite a spirited challenge, Rep. Richard Hanna survived a vicious campaign to score a convincing win in the Republican primary for the 22nd Congressional District seat, defeating Tea Party-backed state Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney.

Hanna’s victory now virtually assures his reelection in November because he will not face a major party opponent in the general election, as no Democratic candidate filed to enter the race before the deadline.

As of 1:15 a.m. Wednesday, Hanna defeated Tenney by a 52.6-47.96 margin, topping the assemblywoman by roughly 1,600 votes. Hanna won five of the counties the district touches, while Tenney won three, with the congressman’s biggest boost coming from more than 5,800 votes in Oneida County, which he won.

In his victory speech Tuesday night Hanna never specifically mentioned his opponent by name, but did speak about tolerance, deliberate choice after a contentious race. Both Hanna and Tenney had accused each other of mudslinging and falsehoods.

“When you look at the way these races are treated, everything is a blood fight. When you look at the opportunity to have thoughtful, deliberative, fact-based debate in a civilized way—it is what the people deserve,” Hanna said. “That’s what I brought to this and I think we know these primaries are difficult, we know they are highly motivated people. … I am happy to be a Republican. I am proud of that, the core values that the Republican Party represents matter to me.”

Hanna said he looked forward to traveling to Washington tomorrow morning and going back to work. Hanna faced criticism during the campaign for being ranked by The National Journal as the third-most moderate Republican in Congress. In his victory speech Hanna once again defended his record.

“What you see now is a government that’s frozen and it’s frozen almost to the point where it’s broken. And it’s broken not because of our lack of ideas or lack of opportunity,” Hanna said. “It’s broken because we have a lack of will to work together, to compromise and to understand that in a pluralist society it is critical that we create peace first.”

It is still unclear if Tenney will run for her state Assembly seat again. She has two and a half weeks to make a decision and to gather the 500 signatures necessary to quality her to run again. After the results were in Tenney said she was proud of the message sent during her campaign.

“We did a really great job and I’m really proud of the people in this room and everyone out there,” Tenney said. “It was one of the greatest experiences of my life.”


Ashley Hupfl