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7 Eyewitness News profiles 23rd Congressional race

Posted at 3:30 PM, Oct 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-28 19:57:54-04

New York’s 23rd Congressional District covers 11 counties spanning across the Southern Tier, Finger Lakes and Western New York.

Republicans out weigh democrats by roughly 20 thousand voters, and it’s a republican stronghold. It almost wholly supported President Trump in 2016.

Republican Congressman Tom Reed has also held the seat since 2010. He’s running for re-election to a sixth term, but democrat Tracy Mitrano believes she’s the better choice.

“The job’s not done, and we are making some tremendous headway in regards to the Problem Solvers Caucus that we formed four years ago. I co-chaired on the republican side,” Reed said.

Mitrano ran against Reed in 2018. The 62-year-old mother of two from Penn Yan came within eight percentage points. She’s hoping for a different outcome this Election.

“When people meet me, they realize I have their interests at heart, I want to go to Congress to help and they are willing to vote for me.”

REPORTER ALI TOUHEY: what went wrong the first time around?

MITRANO: I don’t think anything went wrong. It was a three year plan that I had because of the demographics of the district, because of his incumbency, because of the amount of money he gets from corporate PACs.

Just how much?

According to the most recent filings with the Federal Election Commission, Reed has received $1.6 million in “other committee contributions” this election cycle. That includes donations from hundreds of Political Action Committees. Mitrano, on the other hand, has accepted campaign donations from two PACs totaling $4,500.

Reed said his top priority is passing a second stimulus bill before January. Then, he also said a COVID-19 vaccine takes precedence.

“I trust the science. I trust the FDA, and I trust this not going to be a political tool,” said Reed.

Mitrano is proposing to work to have access to broadband for everyone district wide.

“We don’t have the internet in 30% of this district. Kids went home in March and fell off the educational map,” Mitrano explained.

Some republicans, including President Trump, have been critical of the U.S. Postal Service and whether it’s capable of processing absentee ballots.

ALI: Do you think the postal service is fit to handle the load of absentee ballots?

REED: I’m very confident. I know the mail carriers. I know the postal service workers, I know the post masters, and I support them. They’re one of the fundamental services in our Constitution.

Election Day is Tuesday, November 3.