PAC targets Tenney in battle for 22nd District seat

Published Dec 6, 2017 at 4:00pm

The 2018 congressional election in New York’s 22nd District is 11 months away, but incumbent Republican Claudia L. Tenney is being targeted for defeat by End Citizens United, a Democratic political action committee.

On Tuesday, the group identified the 20 Republican senators and representatives, including first-termer Tenney, it will work to defeat in next year’s elections. End Citizens United calls them the “Big Money 20.” It vowed to spend $35 million on the campaign.

“Congresswoman Tenney represents a rigged system that puts megadonors and the special interests above New York families,” said Tiffany Muller, president of End Citizens United, in a statement. “Claudia Tenney is one of the worst offenders and we will hold her accountable.”

Others on the list include Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wisconsin. Tenney, who has not announced whether she’ll seek re-election although she is expected to run again, is the only New Yorker on the list.

In opposing the congresswoman, Muller’s statement cited Tenney’s vote for the Financial Choice Act that “stripped away powers from the agency responsible for protecting the rights of everyday Americans against predatory financial practices.”

The PAC also claims Tenney received more than $70,000 in contributions from Wall Street in the first half of this year.

End Citizens United aims to overturn the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, which held that corporate funding of independent political broadcasts in candidate elections cannot be limited, because doing so would violate the First Amendment.

“This radical leftist group backs liberal extremists and is bankrolled by donors in New York City and San Francisco,” said Tenney campaign spokeswoman Raychel Renna. “Just more evidence (state Assemblyman Anthony J.) Brindisi isn’t a moderate. No matter how much he tries to deceive voters, Brindisi is a liberal Albany politician who will rubberstamp the Cuomo-Pelosi agenda.”

Democrat Brindisi, 119-Utica, announced in June he was going to seek Tenney’s seat next year.

The 22nd District is attracting more than the attention of End Citizens United.

The University of Virginia’s Center for Politics, Sabato’s Crystal Ball, recently shifted the race to “toss-up.”