NY-22 Minute: Tenney Calls Response to Mass Shooters Comments a "Smear Campaign" By Luke Perry
Tenney stated there is “demonstrable proof” supporting her claims. Contrary reports are “corrupt fake news” and “unfair.”
Tenney described these stories as a “smear campaign” put forth by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, the news media, and her opponent, Anthony Brindisi.
In particular, Tenney claimed the story was "planted" in newspapers to "twist" and "smear" and hurt her to produce a soundbite, so "they can run advertisements later." Tenney contends "it really was just a routine, mundane conversation pretty much about something that was really very egalitarian and it got turned into this insanity."
In a mostly friendly conversation, Representative Tenney told co-hosts Rocco LaDuca and Mark Wolber that she would not let them “litigate this thing about the truth” in response to their requests for clarification on her views and inquiry whether the two anecdotal examples of mass shootings by supposedly left-leaning individuals she cited constitute an overall trend.
Tenney believes that gun owners, the National Rifle Association and Republicans are being “vilified” after the Florida school shooting, and she will defend them.
Tenney also rebuked reactions by Richard Hanna, Michael Arcuri, and Sherry Boehlert, the last three members of Congress to represent the district, all of whom denounced her view. After hearing of this, Tenney said she smiled and said: "the swamp monsters, you know, their bloody hand is coming out of their political grave. You know, ahh! We don't want someone to fight the swamp."
In terms of gun policy, Tenney reiterated her thoughts on how to understand and respond to school shootings. This included extended discussion of her belief that teachers should not be armed, which differs from President Trump.
Tenney has stated: “I don’t agree with the president that we have to have teachers armed in school. I think the teachers should teach. Let the experts who deal with security deal with security.”
Representative Tenney will formally announce her candidacy for reelection on March 3rd in New Hartford.
Full audio of the interview available here.
Updated 2:25pm, February 28.
Luke Perry (@PolSciLukePerry) is Chair and Professor of Government at Utica College.
Read the NY-22 Minute for timely and comprehensive analysis of the campaign.