My mother-in-law received a campaign appeal from U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik. Though now deceased, I can hear her disappointment. She was a proud Republican but she could not tolerate the direction her party was going.
Stefanik’s campaign appeal exemplifies this. It’s filled with arrogance, untruths and statements that instill fear and division, the same qualities exemplified by President Donald Trump whom Stefanik fully endorses and whom my mother-in-law could not.
When Stefanik first entered Congress, she wouldn’t even say Trump’s name. She expressed a desire to work for the north country with humility and a strong voice. But she became the Republican my mother-in-law could not tolerate: self-serving, concerned with winning and unkind.
In the appeal letter, Stefanik states she needs money to counter the effort led by national Democrats, the Hollywood left and deep-pocketed special interests. She states the radical national Democrats hand-picked Tedra Cobb to unseat her.
Well I know Tedra Cobb. When she ran in 2017, she put her name forward ready to serve. The national Democrats did not endorse anyone running in that Democratic primary.
Tedra won the primary handily and ran a campaign funded mainly by local donations from people like me. Attack ads from Stefanik started immediately using Trump’s tactic of branding people with derogatory names. Many of Stefanik’s ads have been proven false, yet she stands by them.
Stefanik’s campaign letter ends with a survey of 10 questions. Mostly the respondent is either agreeing or disagreeing that the Republicans are doing great things and the Democrats are doing terrible things.
The priorities listed on Stefanik’s agenda are exposing the radical left wing agenda and standing up for the MAGA agenda. Shouldn’t a campaign be concerned with issues such as health care, jobs and education?
I know Tedra is genuine. She wants to serve rather than seek a career in politics. She wants to find common ground rather than look for reasons to divide. Tedra has lived and worked in the 21st District for 30 years. Stefanik found an opportunity to start a political career because of a summer place on Lake Champlain.
These women bring two very different perspectives. Stefanik’s is to win using special interest money and to support Trump at all costs to further her career as a politician. Tedra’s is to serve her community and represent us without the goal of a political career and without being in the pockets of special interest. Tedra has my vote this fall.