Cheers and scoffs filled the gymnasium of SUNY Corning Community College during New York’s 23rd District Congressional debate between Republican Congressman Tom Reed and Democratic Candidate Tracy Mitrano.
Some of the key issues discussed surrounded around extremism, gun control and the divide of the nation.
In closing statements, Tracy Mitrano said she wants to fight for what she believes is right, for not only the people of New York’s 23rd District, but those of the nation.
“I very earnestly, ask for your vote, because I want to go to Washington to get what you have told me that you want, affordable health care, good education without debt, good infrastructure, responsible management of our natural resources and a tax plan that makes sense for working and middle class people around this country and around this district,” Mitrano said.
Congressman Tom Reed expressed his belief in the power within ourselves.
“We are going to stand up to extremism, we are going to stand up in hostile crowds and we are going to fight for you,” Reed said. “I believe in you, I believe in you having the power to control your own destiny, I believe in you having the power to seize the opportunities and let you succeed or fail on your own merits.”
Hundreds of people from all over the area filled the gymnasium to watch some of the most controversial issues debated on one stage.
Some believe this was a great opportunity, democracy at its finest, for two opponents to discuss issues that will impact the people of the Twin Tiers.
“I just think it’s great for everyone to come out, and people to use their voice and vote for whoever they think is going to represent them the best,” Samuel McDonald, a resident of Elmira, said.
“I think it’s great to hear both of them, I think you can really hear the difference,” Ithaca resident, Anne Reichlin, said. “I feel Tracy really has a good feel for the people of the district, I believe she really cares.”
“I think Tracy Mitrano did a decent job, but Tom connected more with the audience and my views on things that represent the New York 23rd,” Kenneth Stump, resident of Elmira, said.
It is events like this that make the United States the democracy that it is. From Ithaca, Corning, Elmira and even viewers at home, tuning in to better understand who to exercise their right to vote for.