U.S. Rep. Claudia Tenney has been enmeshed in a contentious and closely watched race, but if the Republican wins her bid for re-election to Congress, her top priority is fighting to fix the economy.
“We need to bring our economy back,” said Tenney, 57, who serves the 22nd Congressional District. “Our small-business community is going under, our family farms are not making it, our taxes are going up. My mission is to try to bring more jobs back in an organic way so that people have an opportunity, and jobs across all sectors.”
Tenney has waged a heated campaign against Anthony Brindisi, her Democratic rival and a state Assemblyman.
“If (voters) really want someone who’s independent and honest, I’m the person they should vote for,” Tenney said. “I’m independent, I’m honest, and I am a solid, practical business person who is going to do the right thing to grow our business community. (Brindisi) has done nothing to help grow our business community.”
Tenney was born and raised in New Hartford and has one son, Trey, that she raised as a single mother. She graduated from New Hartford High School in 1971, Colgate University in 1983 and Taft College of Law, Cincinnati University. She was elected to the Assembly in 2011 and to Congress in 2016.
In 2018, Tenney has voted for legislation including the Protect and Serve Act, reducing the gross salary limit for farmers to receive subsidies, and the Spending Cuts to Expired and Unnecessary Programs Act.
Health care: Tenney has said she does not support the Affordable Care Act. She has said supports a free-market system with “patient-centric health care.”
Economy: Tenney said she wants to improve the economy by keeping jobs from leaving New York. Some of the ways she wants to do this are by enacting more job-friendly policies and rolling back regulations.
Immigration: Tenney has said she does not support amnesty.
The Second Amendment: Tenney wants New York’s SAFE Act to be repealed. She said she does not support unproven gun control measures targeted at law-abiding gun owners.
Education: Tenney is a member of the Assembly Education Committee. She said she is opposed to federally mandated Common Core curriculum in New York, and wants to end federal interference in educational decisions.
Reproductive rights: Tenney has sponsored bills in the Assembly that limit expanding abortion, including the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. Tenney said she “is a supporter of the sanctity of life.”
On her opponent
“My image has just been destroyed by these smear ads; we’re trying to tell people the truth about who I really am,” Tenney said. “That just shows you what a big threat I am that they have to spend that kind of money. In 2016, I got outspent — it was about $3 million to $16 million — and that makes me the biggest underdog in the country in the House of Representatives.”
Tenney said she has never voted for a tax while in office.
“It’s concerning to me that (Brindisi) is now telling people he’s not going to support Nancy Pelosi,” Tenney said. “He’s done nothing to help our business community.”