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Audio Feature: WGXC Congressional Report 20181030

Oct 27, 2018 9:45 am
Here's the week in the news for Rep. John Faso (R-Kinderhook), the District 19 Congressperson for the WGXC listening area. The Fivethirtyeight.com website currently reports Faso votes with Donald Trump's positions 89.2 percent of the time, the same as last week. Fivethirtyeight.com also currently predicts Faso has a 40.2 percent chance of winning re-election, rating Democrat Antonio Delgado at 59.8 percent. Click here to download or play an audio version of this report (8:23).

• The Siena College poll taken October 12-16 of 500 likely voters in New York's 19th Congressional District reported a near tie, with Republican incumbent John Faso leading Democrat Antonio Delgado by one point. Faso was up by five points the last time Siena polled the district, in late August. Now the polling reveals a district with a split personality. Men favor Faso in the Hudson Valley Congressional District by 19 points, while women prefer Delgado by 17 points. Voters with at least a bachelor’s degree are voting for Delgado by 20 points, the poll says, while those with less than a bachelor’s degree prefer Faso by 19 points. Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg says, “Each has more than 70 percent support from his own party and independents are separated by a point." The split personality continues with support for the national Republican leaders currently running the country. The poll says that 19th Congressional District voters would prefer Republicans maintain control of U.S. House of Representatives by a 48-45 percent margin. But, also by a three-point margin, local voters disapprove of the performance of President Donald Trump. Of course, the poll has a margin of error of +/- 4.6 percentage points, so many of the results could be much different on election day.

President Donald Trump used his Twitter feed Oct. 23 to campaign for Kinderhook-based Republican John Faso. "Congressman John Faso of New York has worked hard and smart. Strong on Crime, Borders and our 2nd Amendment, John is respected by all. Vote for John. He has my complete and total Endorsement!" Trump tweeted.

The Faso campaign also released a new ad Oct. 21. This one does not feature any attack on his opponent Democrat Antonio Delgado, and touts Faso's constituent service.

William J. Kemble is reporting for the Daily Freeman Republican U.S. Rep. John Faso received a rocky reception at the debate with challenger Democrat Antonio Delgado held in Woodstock, October 23. Faso was booed by the crowd of nearly 300 people at the Woodstock Playhouse when he brought up the subject of Delgado’s residency. Delgado lives in Rhinebeck and has said he is familiar with the district having grown up in Schenectady and becoming part of his wife’s family, which has resided in both Woodstock and Saugerties. In addition to being booed over his comments about Delgado's residency, Faso was laughed at by many in the audience when he said Democratic discussions about health care were part of a political conspiracy. The question of Faso’s attack ads about Delgado’s decade-old rap album was raised. After denying the ads were authorized by his campaign, Faso closed by saying Delgado was “supported by kind of a mob mentality,” which drew groans from the audience. The candidates strongly differed on what is being done by the current Congress and President Donald Trump in dealing with sexual harassment in the workplace, and the immigration issue, specifically, the news-making caravan of migrants from Central America now in Mexico. The Spectrum-hosted event did not include either Green Party candidate Steve Greenfield or independent candidate Diane Neal. Read the full story in the Daily Freeman.

• On Oct. 22, at a political debate, Republican John Faso said he did not vote for Donald Trump in 2016, but that he voted for Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson in the presidential election. The next day Trump endorsed Faso on Twitter, and in another debate later that day Faso was repeating some of Trump's key talking points. The Kinderhook Congressional incumbent claimed Oct. 23 that Democrats have a “mob mentality” and claimed that a Central American caravan of U.S.-bound migrants was organized by someone with a “political” agenda. Then, on Oct. 24 Faso left the campaign trail to go see his friend, the President. "I'm at the White House for the signing of a historic and bipartisan package to fight the opioid crisis. Included in the package is the STOP Act, which I was a primary sponsor of in the House. The STOP Act and the larger package will save lives," Faso wrote on Twitter. Meanwhile, Faso and The New York Post attempted to turn his opponent, Democrat Antonio Delgado, into some sort of anti-Israel radical. "As currently constructed, you know, Israel is not a Jewish democracy. Those settlements make it so that it can’t be. So, we’ve got to have a two-state solution,” Delgado said Oct. 23 at the WAMC/News Channel 13 debate with Faso, referring to a deal to share land between Israel and the Palestinians. “Israel is not a democracy?! Israel is a strong democracy. It is a vibrant democracy. It has a vibrant free enterprise system. It has a vibrant agricultural system, culture... Israel is a democracy,” Faso responded during the debate, and Delgado answered back. “I said it is not a Jewish democracy. Meaning that given the fact that we have settlements currently in the region, it is not deemed a nation of Jewish democracy until we deal with the settlements. Until we deal with the settlements we will have that issue,” Delgado said. The Democrat also responded to the news of the day Oct. 24 of attempted terror attacks aimed at political rivals of the president with a press release and a Tweet. "I am deeply saddened and alarmed by today's reports of attempted acts of terror targeting public servants, leaders and journalists in my home state of New York and across the country," Delgado wrote. Faso also Tweeted about the issue, writing, "Justice will be served for those responsible for the attempted attacks against Pres. Obama, Sec. Clinton and others. These actions run counter to our values and do nothing more than divide and terrorize our country. I am grateful for the Secret Service and local law enforcement." And Delgado also released a new ad Oct. 23, touting the endorsement of Republican former State Senator John Dunne of Chatham.
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