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NY-22 2014 Tag

New York Congressional District 22 is in the heart of central upstate New York, a mostly rural or semi-rural district that runs from Utica in the north to Johnson City-Endicott and Binghamton in the south. If New York had its own flyover country, NY-22 would be it.  The district is so safe Republican, that Democrats are not even running a candidate in this year's election. New York District 22 Republican incumbent Richard Hanna either is a liberal or "moderate" Republican, depending who you ask.  Few people call him a conservative, and he's rated as one of the most liberal Republicans in Congress. Hanna was challenged by Claudia Tenney, a conservative, Tea Party Republican state assemblywoman. The race was far tighter than the mainstream media expected.  At the end of the evening, Hanna won by about 1600 votes, 52.8% to 47.2%.  To barely win, Hanna and his supportive SuperPACs spent $2 million to Tenney's $150,000. Contrary to how many in the media are portraying the race, Hanna did not win because he was liberal or moderate.  To the contrary, Hanna's campaign and SuperPACs supporting him ran away from his "moderate" label and fully towards portraying Hanna as the more conservative candidate.

Update: NY22 Final Results 2014 Republican Primary

Legal Insurrection was able to bring national attention to the Tenney/Hanna primary last week, with a story involving "false flag" Super PACs spending upwards of $1 million to distort Tenney's campaign.  Since then, the Tea Party Marine mother has been garnering support from conservatives, receiving endorsements from Rick Santorum, Sean Hannity, Erick Erickson, and other political pundits. Aside from the false flag Super PACs, Hanna has also taken to Twitter to seemingly make up things concerning Tenney's career in the Assembly.  Yesterday, his campaign tweeted that Tenney had "let (the) SAFE Act" (the onerous anti-gun legislation) pass in New York, despite the fact she was a 'No' vote on the legislation.  The blatant distortion of reality led Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin to respond by calling Hanna a "liar" and a "coward." One thing has been clear over the last several weeks in the 22nd Congressional District - Richard Hanna and the GOP establishment are concerned with this race.  The proof lies in Hanna's supporter's actions...
  • The unceasing, dishonest Super PAC ads. It bears repeating - A million dollar campaign to distort Tenney's record by groups with decidedly non-conservative missions.
  • Deceptive tweets such as the 'she allowed the SAFE Act to pass' message.
  • Hanna's unwillingness to actually engage in a legitimate debate, where his repeated fabrications of Tenney's history in the Assembly could be readily challenged.
  • And now we can add this - last-minute attempts to keep Tenney's campaign message off the airwaves.
One year ago, in explaining a vote for legislation regarding internet governance, Richard Hanna released a statement which read in part that he "believe(s) that the freedom of speech is a fundamental right that should be protected both online and within our daily lives without unwarranted government censure." That belief doesn't seem to extend to the television airwaves however, as the Hanna campaign has, in a last ditch effort to preserve his Congressional career, issued a cease and desist order to multiple television stations running Tenney campaign ads, one day prior to their primary in New York's 22nd Congressional District.  The order was designed to force television stations including WKTV, WBNG, WUTR, to pull the ads, called "To Tell the Truth."

Last night we wondered Will conservatives and Tea Party miss a golden opportunity in #NY22? and questioned why no big name national conservatives or Tea Party politicians were helping out in Claudia Tenney's challenge to Richard Hanna in the safe Republican NY-22 District. Tenney has faced over $1 million in negative false flag attack ads from Super PACs supporting Hanna. The anti-Tenney ads have run around the clock for weeks. Rick Santorum has answered the challenge, recording a robocall that went out to 50,000 Republican voters in the District:
Citizens United Political Victory Fund (CUPVF), the affiliated PAC of Citizens United, announced that Senator Rick Santorum will be contacting 50,000 Republican households in New York supporting conservative Claudia Tenney who is running in New York’s 22nd Congressional District’s Republican Primary which is being held on June 24th.
Will anyone else step up to the plate? In related developments, Washington Post notes Tenney's strong challenge:
Keep an eye on the 22nd District, where Rep. Richard Hanna (R) faces a surprisingly strong challenge from Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney (R).
Laura Ingraham also has endorsed Tenney:

One week ago tonight, Legal Insurrection brought national attention to a Tea Party, Marine mother running for Congress in upstate New York. Claudia Tenney has been battling a million dollar avalanche of "false flag" Super PAC ads that deceptively portrayed Tenney as the more liberal candidate, and incumbent Richard Hanna as more conservative. In fact, the opposite is true.  Conservative voters in this conservative district may mistakenly vote for Hanna thinking they are electing the more conservative candidate. The rallying cry has been picked up and amplified by Erick Erickson, Michelle Malkin, Laura Ingraham and Sean Hannity, among others. Unfortunately, so far, no big name national conservative or Tea Party politicians have jumped into the race to help Tenney. With the primary this Tuesday, June 24, time is running out. Why the lack of interest?  This is a completely safe Republican seat, the perfect opportunity to move the caucus at no risk. And it could have been winnable (and still might be).

Last Sunday night we called attention to the flood of PAC advertising on behalf of incumbent Republican Richard Hanna in the safe-Republican NY-22 district. The Republican primary is June 24. There is no Democratic candidate, because the district was considered so safe Republican. The PAC ads are "false flags" because they present Hanna as the most conservative candidate, when in fact challenger Claudia Tenney is the most conservative. WBNG 12 reports:
Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney held a press conference to call out Hanna, who she said is partnering with liberal companies in Washington and is sending out false information to voters. She said Hanna is putting out flyers that are simply not true. "He's putting out flyer after flyer describing himself as 'Your Conservative Voice, Your Conservative Choice.' There's a reason he keeps using the word conservative because that's who votes in Republican primaries," Tenney said. Tenney is the top-rated conservative in the state legislature and Hanna is the third most liberal of the Republican caucus.
Pro-Hannal liberal PACs have spent several hundred thousand dollars or more on these ads in a relatively small market where the advertising rates must be much lower than in large markets. I would not be surprised if $700,000 of ads in NY-22 is the equivalent of millions in big city markets. The ads are non-stop. This evening the ads were on TV during Special Report with Bret Baier:

The story posted here yesterday regarding two allegedly "conservative" Super PACs running false flag attack ads against a conservative candidate, and in support of a liberal Republican has generated quite a bit of chatter.  Claudia Tenney, the Tea Party Marine mother who has had her record distorted by questionable groups, is starting to get national attention. Earlier today, RedState Editor Erick Erickson officially endorsed Tenney, citing the false flag article and referring to these Super PACs as "coin-operated consultants" for the GOP establishment. Via RedState:
... it is worth noting that some supposedly conservative Super PAC’s are pouring money in the 22nd congressional district to defeat Claudia Tenney. These “conservative” groups, really coin operated consultants, are accusing Tenney of being less conservative than the liberal Richard Hanna. Claudia Tenney is actually to the right of Richard Hanna and would be a vast improvement for that district and a better vote in Congress. If you like in the 22nd Congressional District, you absolutely want to vote for Claudia Tenney. Do not let the coin operated consultants tell you differently. Stand up for Marine mom Claudia Tenney. If you can spare some cash, help fund her as she battles the coin operated consultants of people lying about her. She needs all the help she can muster. And those of you who live there need to tell your friends and family to vote for her too.
The news of the disingenuous attacks on Tenney has riled up other conservative pundits as well.  Laura Ingraham took to Twitter to call out 'GOP establishment hacks.' Michelle Malkin has retweeted the article, as well as Erickson's endorsement.