NY-22 Minute: Brindisi Wants to Hold Monthly Town Halls, Supports HR-1 By Luke Perry
Winning a red district that likes President Trump
Brindisi believed his campaign message was instrumental to his success. “We talked a lot of about bipartisanship, working together.” Brindisi said that NY-22, and NY-24 prior to redistricting, was typically represented by “a member with more moderate views.”
Michael Arcuri, the last Democrat to represent the district (2006 to 2010) believes the closeness of the 2018 election was “telling” in illustrating how evenly divided NY-22 is. Arcuri believes this tells Brindisi that he has to represent Democrat and Republican interests, as Brindisi did while an Assemblyman.
Claudia Tenney linking Brindisi’s family to organized crime during NY-22 campaign
Brindisi laughed and referenced serving with Tenney in the Assembly for years on friendly terms. Brindisi believed his campaign “kept things above board,” while “unfortunately she decided to go a little negative when it came to the family.” “I can take the beating,” Brindisi said, “and still maintain cordiality toward her.”
If Brindisi supports HR-1
HR-1 is a package bill in the House with various reforms that seek to limit money in politics, make it easier for people to vote, and require presidents to publicly disclose their tax returns.
Brindisi said he will support HR-1. Brindisi “campaigned against special interest money in this election,” believes money has too much influence on politics and “we have to do something to restore people’s faith in government.”
Brindisi would like to do more, but this will be difficult without overturning Citizens United v. FEC or adopting a U.S. Constitutional amendment, both of which Brindisi supports.
Brindisi said he will be a voice against mega-mergers that do not result in better services or better prices for consumers. “At the very least,” Brindisi said, “we have to have representatives who can stand up to some of these mergers.”
Brindisi cited his opposition to merger of CVS with Aetna Insurance, two of the largest pharmaceutical and insurance industries respectively. As a federal representative, Brindisi will push for further scrutiny of federal mergers before they go forward.
Desired committee assignment
Brindisi said it will be determined if his opposition to Nancy Pelosi for Speaker will result in a diminished committee appointment. When asked if there was a committee related to mergers and acquisitions Brindisi would like to serve on, he said the issue touched many areas and industries, so he will have a platform to engage the issue on any committee.
Brindisi did not name a specific committee he aspires to be on, but noted the importance of infrastructure and agriculture to NY-22. Outgoing Congressman John Faso (R, NY-19) and Sean Patrick Maloney (D, NY-18) are the two current New Yorkers on both the House Committee on Agriculture and House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. It appears Brindisi may follow in their footsteps.
Brindisi held several thank you parties for supporters this week in Cortland (video of Brindisi’s comments here), Binghamton, and Utica. Brindisi stated at one event that he wants to hold a town hall every month starting in January.
Luke Perry (@PolSciLukePerry) is Chair and Professor of Government at Utica College.
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