Rss

Press release – March 19, 2014 speaking event at Sons of Italy about NY Safe Act

As provided to news media on 3/10/14

For immediate release
Please contact 6072429247 – campaign of Michael Vasquez for Congress – for further comment or questions
*************************************************************************

3/10/14 (Binghamton, NY)
We have confirmed that NY 22nd congressional candidate Michael Vasquez will be one of the speakers at the Register Voters Not Firearms – NY Safe Act protest event. This event is to be held at the Sons of Italy Hall, 126 O’Dell Ave., Endicott NY 13760. The event is sponsored by SCOPE, Inc.

The event is open to the public and the press, and will start at 7pm.

Vasquez political position cards

Political position cards for the Michael Vasquez for Congress campaign

Michael Vasquez will be one of 6 confirmed speakers at the event. Mr. Vasquez will be speaking on the importance of public opposition and voting to enact a repeal of this infringement on the 2nd Amendment, as well as his December 2012 prediction [http://www.mvass.com/2012/12/18/gun-restriction-legislation-does-it-really-help/].

Candidate Vasquez stated,

“It is vital for voters in New York to step up and let their voices be heard, in the Primaries and the General Election this year. The only way to combat the growing presence of Government interference in the lives and choices of the public is to remind the elected politicians that they are not nobles dictating to the public, but servants of the public as defined by our Constitution.”

Candidate Vasquez went on to state,

“I have firmly and consistently supported the 2nd Amendment over my years of political commentary, which I believe that NY Safe Act thoroughly violates. I thank SCOPE for the opportunity to join with what I believe are a majority of members of the NY-22, New Yorkers across the State, and Americans across the nation in opposing this violation of our Rights.”

Michael Vasquez has been a vocal opponent of gun restriction and ban legislation throughout his time as a political commentator, with articles and videos reaching back before 2008. Mr. Vasquez is the owner of M V Consulting, Inc with articles written under his legal alias “Michael Vass.”

SCOPE Inc, created in 1965, is a civil rights organization focused on the protection and preservation of the right of firearms ownership as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. They have rated Michael Vasquez A+ on 2nd Amendment issues.

NY Revolution, also speaking at the event, is a grass roots organization whose mission statement is the purpose of waking up Americans to the reality of our civil liberties.

Also speaking is 2nd Amendment Coalition of WNY, a Facebook organization out of Westerm NY, seeking to protect the Constitution.

Oath Keepers will be represented at the event, is a non-partisan association of current and formerly serving military, peace officers and first responders that seek to fulfill the oath mandated by Article VI of the Constitution they have taken.
————————————————————————————–

A flyer of the event can be seen here:
Sons of Italy – anti Safe Act event – Endicott, NY on 3/19/14 @ 7pm

2014 NY Conservative Party conference – 1/27/14

On Monday Jan. 27, 2014, I had the pleasure to join Republicans and Conservatives from across New York State at the NY Conservative Party conference, held in Albany NY. It was an all day event, featuring speakers that included potential candidate for NY Governor Rob Astorino, Karen Moreau speaking on fracking in New York and America’s energy independence, Elise Stefanik who is running for the NY-21, and Betsy McCaughey speaking on the travails of Obamacare and its divergence from the convoluted law passed in 2009 and how it has become even more incomprehensible. It was one of the most welcoming experiences I have ever had.

There were literally hundreds in attendance, and the luncheon was filled as we listened to writer Peggy Noonan speak about Presidents Reagan and Bush. There was no lack of concerned New Yokers, each and every one of them opting to stay in New York and make it a better, more business friendly, more open-minded and politically diverse State than Gov. Cuomo ever conceived. That is the strength of New Yorkers – when faced with a challenge we face it head on.

I was able to speak with people from across the State including :Jeffery Cleary of the Irish American Republicans, Jim Kelly who worked on the Joe DioGuardi campaign, Henry Ford of the St. Lawrence Conservative Party, Randy Pascarella who won his bid for the Schenectady County Legislature, Stephen Aldstadt of SCOPE Inc (fighting to protect our 2nd Amendment Rights against the Safe Act). I saw old friends like George Phillips, the current legislator for the 8th District in Broome County and also in a run for re-election in the 2014 mid-terms. I made new friends like James Swindell who saw fit to make an initial donation after speaking with me for an hour, and Carl Paladino who was generous enough to take the time to hear about my reasons for running for the NY-22 congressional seat, and John Burnett who ran for NY Comptroller in 2013 and provided new inspiration on running for elected office for the first time.

But 2 people were of particular note.

Hal Brilliant, Chairman of the Dutchess County Conservative Party, took the step to support my position with regard to defending the 2nd Amendment and against the NY Safe Act. Like myself, Chairman Brilliant agrees that the NY Safe Act does not protect law abiding citizens, and does little to nothing to prevent mass shootings or stop criminal acts of violence. Chairman Brilliant went one step further to offer his support in my bid for election.

Also of note was my chance to speak with Michael Long, State Chairman of the NY Conservative Party. His efforts to welcome me, and his attention to my efforts was generous. It’s not often that an opportunity to speak with the head of such a large and powerful organization occurs, but I observed Chairman Long do so several times. It’s a welcome change from the norm.

Overall, my time at the CPPAC was fruitful on many levels. I gained greater insight on how I can further help the constituents of the NY-22, how I can further my efforts to get elected, and a far greater view of the scope of the Republican and Conservative efforts to improve the quality of life in New York State, and Congress.

I thank all those that took the time to meet with me, to hear my views on Congress and reintroducing accountability in Government. I look forward to future conversations, as my credentials and commitment are reviewed.

Sincerely

Michael Vasquez
Candidate for NY 22nd Congressinal District in 2014

Congratulations Rep. Hanna on top 25 wealthiest in House again

I just wanted to take a moment to congratulate Rep. Hanna on the success he has achieved since being elected to the House of Representatives. Each year since 2010 Rep Hanna has made the cut for the top 25 richest Representatives.

In 2010, Rep. Hanna was ranked 18th out of 435 Representatives, with a net worth estimated to be no less than $13.8 million. But competition in Congress is fierce, and in 2011 Rep. Hanna felt the pinch. His estimated minimum net worth dropped to $13.7 million, and he fell to only the 23rd most wealthy of all 435 Representatives.

Rep. Richard Hanna (R-NY 22)

Rep. Richard Hanna (R-NY 22)


Still that minor setback did not impede the success that would come. Because in 2012, the last full year that data is available on, Rep. Hanna had a minimum net worth of $14.4 million, an increase of $700,000 (though he fell another spot to just the 24th wealthiest Representative).

To give some perspective, from 2010 to 2012 the average household income changed [U.S. Census]:

the poorest 20% – increased $599
Next 20% – increased $1,764
Middle – increased $3,082
Next 20% – increased $4,065
Top 20% (rich) – increased $10,671

Put another way, the median household income, just for New York State, was $47,600. That was down from 2010 and 2011 income levels.

Rep. Hanna overcame the negative pressures from New York State Government, and a sluggish (at best) economy, to outpace the average American household and retain a position in the top 6% of the House of Representatives, even as Congress reached an 8% approval rating.

At the same time, Rep. Hanna’s efforts of 3 years have resulted in potentially 2,000 jobs for NY State by bringing drone testing to our State – of course without any legislation to prevent abuse of drone use by the same Government that allowed the NSA scandal to occur.

Plus, Rep. Hanna is promoting HR 2131, the SKILLS Visa Act, which will give 160,000 STEM [Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math] jobs to foreigners.

Lastly, he voted for the Ryan-Murray budget deal, that will cut Veteran pensions and increases Federal debt spending.

Rep. Hanna has been busy, and in 2014 you can re-elect him. Or you could visit www.MichaelVasquezforCongress.com and consider a different option in the mid-term elections.

Press release – 1/6/14 – Unmanned aircraft coming to New York

On Jan. 6, 2014, Rep. Hanna announced that as part of his efforts in the Drone Caucus, Griffis International Airport in Rome, NY will become a testing site for unmanned aerial vehicles, commonly called drones.

Image of potential private drone abuses

The deal also involves drones in Massachusetts, and between the 2 States a total of $700 million in tax revenues are projected to be raised, over an unspecified time period. Estimates are that some 1300 jobs will be created throughout New York due to this deal.

Michael Vasquez, candidate for the NY 22nd Congressional District of which Rome, NY is part of, commented on the news,

“I am always happy to hear of opportunities to create jobs in New York, especially in the NY-22. We need to bring in new industries to help the State shed the title of least business friendly in the nation, while helping our nation as well as our constituents.

Still, I hesitate only in the fact that the rush to create 1300 jobs via drones, less than a tenth of a percent of the State unemployment, is not accompanied by responsible legislation to ensure that the use of drones is not abused as we have seen is the case with many Government agencies lately.”

Candidate Vasquez went on to state,

“While I commend the Drone Caucus for its efforts to bring decent wage jobs to Americans that are needed, as most of the NY-22 is in need of, the failure to create legislation over the past 3 years to ensure the privacy and 4th Amendment rights of those same Americans is a mission only half-done, in my opinion.”

To date there has been no legislation passed that addresses the use of drones domestically, and no legislation sponsored by Rep. Hanna to address this concern. Ryan Calo (assistant professor at the University of Washington School of Law) has said, “There’s very little in American privacy law that would limit the use of drones for surveillance.”

2013 rewind: The interviews of NY-22 candidate Michael Vasquez and the media

The following are all the media interviews we have recorded of every interview with the media and New York 22nd Congressional candidate Michael Vasquez.

The videos are listed in chronological order from the exploratory committee in April 2013 through the official announcement of a run for Congress in November 2013, up until the end of the year.

Exploratory Committee

WBGH -

April 2013

YNN –

April 2013

WNBF -

August 2013 – part 1

August 2013 – part 2

*********************************************************************************************************************
Announced run for 2014 NY 22nd Congressional seat

WICZ –

November 2013

WKTV –

November 2013

WNBF –

November 2013 – Part 1

November 2013 – Part 2

WUTQ –

November 2013

WBGH –

December 2013

Exceptional Conservative Show with Ken McClenton (D.C. based) -

December 2013 – Part 1

December 2013 – Part 2

Internet and Newspaper articles/interviews for 2013 include: Binghamton Press & Sun Bulletin, Herkimer Evening Telegram, Houston Conservative Examiner, Ithacajournal.com, Utica Observer-Dispatch and others.

To learn more about NY congressional candidate Michael Vasquez, and/or to lend your support, please visit www.MichaelVasquezforCongress.com.

Rep. Hanna’s 2013 report card – a more realistic review

At the end of 2013 my opponent for the NY 22nd Congressional district, the incumbent Rep. Richard Hanna, released a summary of his efforts in Congress as a show of his dedication to the concerns of constituents. It’s a great gesture, but if looked at in context it is just a gesture.

Let me explain.

In the middle of page 3, right after the table of contents, a “snapshot of 2013 by-the-numbers” is presented. In the very first item, my point is made explicitly clear –

174 public Vote Explanations posted on Facebook, Twitter and Hanna.House.Gov

This is a lie, and I dare Rep. Hanna to sue me because I’m right. The total is 175. Because Rep. Hanna removed one of his public statements. Specifically How I voted on HR 2397 – which now comes up with a 404 error if you search for it.

Rep. Richard Hanna (R-NY 22)

Rep. Richard Hanna (R-NY 22)

Why is it missing and unaccounted for? Because in that article, published at 8:30 AM on July 25th, Rep. Hanna stated that he voted to protect the public from the abuses of the NSA. That statement flies in the face of his actual vote on July 24th – against the Amash Amendment which would have protected the public from NSA abuses.

Thus, since the full unedited original article has yet to be placed back into the record, I am led to believe Rep. Hanna is actively hiding his record from the public on an issue constituents are very concerned about. A record that isn’t always in the interest, or even good faith, of what the people he was elected to represent wanted and believe, I am led to conclude.

I say this directly, Rep. Hanna, if a word of what I have just said is untrue – sue me and I will exit the race for Congress.

You can decide for yourself what you make of this shell-game with the facts. But moving on.

On page 3, and elsewhere in the document, Rep. Hanna takes great pains to highlight the 9 Bills and resolutions he sponsored, as well as the 216 he co-sponsored. What my opponent fails to note, and hopes voters won’t notice, is what he does not include in the snapshot or the document… the number of Bills and/or Resolutions he had pass in the House of Representatives, let alone become law. An omission based on the failure to actually succeed since being elected in 2010.

My opponent paints a happy picture of the status on HR 2310 – a Bill that would provide headstones for Reservists that have died in combat for this nation. A Bill that is frozen in Congress and will likely never become law. Even though the cost is negligible, it is a bi-partisan issue, it is supported by veterans and the public, and there are 89 current members of Congress that are former military that would never dare vote against this Bill. Oh, and only 5 members of Congress, that are former military, support this Bill.

Which brings up the question of why? Has my opponent presented this to them? If not he is being inefficient, if he has then he is ineffective for the reasons why this Bill has universal appeal already stated.

There are other such examples, like H Res 134 (condemning North Korea) and H Res 190 (condemning the Boston Marathon bombing), each of which failed to garner support though there is universal bipartisan support for the issues addressed. Again, were these resolutions with less than 10% support framed a successes because the question of effectiveness and efficiency would be asked – and a shrewd politician obfuscates any question that might cause them to lose votes, no matter how true?

On page 4 of the report card, my opponent then makes this statement

“It is clear that in many ways Washington is broken as 2013 draws to a close. I am pleased to report that your office is not.”

Inefficiency, ineffectiveness, lack of representation of the voters and public in the 22nd District are not examples of a broken elected “office”, I agree. But it is a clear indicator, in my opinion, of one that is perhaps inept. It is an example of something that needs to be corrected, as Government is broken because too many in Congress are very good politicians just like Rep. Hanna seems to be.

You may disagree, but I will press on yet again.

The report card on my opponent then goes through several pages of his biography, the mission his elected office has in Congress (working for the people – not representing them, which is not the same thing by far), a nice picture of the NY 22nd District, and the multiple Committees that my opponent sat on in one of the least trusted and approved Congresses in the history of Congress. In fact 2013 was one of the least functional Congresses ever. Which calls to question how much value sitting on multiple sub-Committees matters when the entire Congress is failing to get anything substantial done.

But I digress. Thus, eventually, the report card gets back to the point of what was actually done.

The first thing it highlights is transparency and accountability. To this it restates the factually incorrect 174 disclosures. It is amazing how in a single figure my opponent, calls into question the transparency he presents to the public and simultaneously fails to be accountable to that same public – all at the same time.

My opponent then takes pride in being ranked as one of the most Liberal Republicans in Congress in 2013. That can be also stated as one of the most Conservative Democrats, or the most Moderate, or as he states “most independent Republican” – they are all equivalent terms I believe. But independent sounds far better than what some might call an elected official that actively tries to grow the opposition Party (as Rep. Hanna did when he told women voters to join the Democrat Party).

He then pats himself on the back for job creation awards (while there are over 20 million Americans still underemployed and the participation rate is at a low of 63%), lauds himself for his NRA rating (though he failed to show up at Remington Arms when President Obama was placing gun manufacturers under siege at the beginning of 2013, though he did months after the gun restriction debate had died down), and then hypes himself on his work with STEM [Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math] jobs.

Let me pause there. My opponent, the incumbent Congressman, wants to be praised for trying to pass HR 2131 – the SKILLS Visa Act – that would give 160,000 STEM jobs to foreign immigrants instead of American workers. I’ve talked to a lot of people in the NY-22, and I don’t know any who have said they support that.

Rep Hanna then moves on to talking about how many people he responded to in 2013. The numbers sound impressive, until compared to the number of people in the NY-22 (over 700,000). Plus the number seems a bit vague. How many people sent letters and request to Rep. Hanna? What is the percentage of responses? It’s not quibbling when you consider that I have talked to dozens of people who state that Rep. Hanna never responded to a single letter or request they made. Even more important to me considering that I still have not gotten any form of response from a single letter that I wrote to Rep. Hanna since 2012 – even to this day his office has not responded to me or my media company, ever. How may others received the same disregard – 100? 10,000? 100,000? My opponent avoids saying.

Finally, on page 12, my opponent notes what he actually did in Congress in 2013. He presents just 1 Bill passed, for baseball coins. But he gives equal billing, in great wording, to HR 2310, H Res 134, and H Res 190. He makes it seem like getting less than 10% support on universal, bipartisan, unopposed items is success – and perhaps in a Congress with an approval rating of 8% it is. But I tend to think the public expects more. From Congress, their Representative, and Government in general.

On page 14 my opponent starts to name all the great causes he supports. He leaves out the fact that he doesn’t mind making “symbolic votes”, as he has admitted and is available to be seen on a Youtube video of an interview he did. He leaves out his apparent rejection of Republican women. He avoids his flip-flop on late-term abortions. He all but forgets his inability to take a side about Syria. He completely disregards his multiple flip-flops on immigration, and his apparent preference (finally) to support reforms on immigration that 9 out of 10 residents of the NY 22nd Congressional District that I have spoken to do not support. He even glosses over the fact that his sudden defense of truck drivers comes more than a year after the rules were changed and several months after the rules went into effect (even though the trucking industry has been fighting this issue since 2012 amid my opponents silence on the issue).

By page 21, my opponent resorts to taking a bow for the pork-spending that endears Congress to some, and has guaranteed re-election to more than a few politicians that have been in office so long they seem to believe themselves to be a nobility (I offer the examples of Sen. Harry Reid, and Sen. Schumer, but there are dozens of others).

Of course the numbers are spread out so as to hide the very apparent bias to the northern end of the NY-22. The Southern Tier received $5 million in funds (Broome and Tioga Counties), Central NY – the middle of the District – received $6 million (Cortland and Chenango), with the north (Oswego, Herkimer, Oneida, and Madison) getting $9 million. If you take out flood relief for Central NY and the Southern Tier, which had little to do with the Congressman, the difference in actions becomes vastly apparent (almost 2-1 bias toward the northern end of the district).

My opponent of course makes room to note the obligatory shaking hands and kissing babies that is part and parcel of all politicians. 2 pages for that. My opponent then goes on to highlight 2 pages of highly selective quotes from cherry-picked news items to finish the report card.

I imagine every student in any educational institution envies the ability of Rep. Richard Hanna, like President Obama, to create their own report card and grading system.

With all honesty I cannot say that my opponent was a complete failure in 2013. He did accomplish some goals that constituents wanted. There were some issues that he could do nothing about (though he could have said far more in my opinion – like Syria, abuse of Executive Orders, overreach of the NSA and IRS, ect). But that does not excuse or even equal the things that he did have control over and failed on.

If we were to be fair, and I am trying my best to be objective though he is my opponent, a true grade of the overall performance in 2013 would be a D+. Transparency and Accountability would be an F-. Effectiveness would be a D+. Efficiency would be a D+. Consistency would be a F-. Leadership would be a D. Responsiveness (to the political ramifications) would be a shining star with a C. Deficit spending would be a B-. Flip-flopping would be an A+.

At the end of the day what will this all mean? That is for voters to decide. But I believe, if voters look at the whole picture – at what is being omitted and hidden, what was done and what was calculated for political gain, what has been done in the name of the NY-22 that fails to reflect the views of the people of the NY-22 – then I believe 2014 will see my opponent, Rep. Hanna, fail to graduate.

Sincerely

Michael Vasquez

2014 starts with a jolt of legal decisions

Mere hours into the start of 2014 and already there have been legal outcomes that are going to affect millions of Americans. Some will be happy, but assuredly not all. Yet, to varying degrees, all of these decisions will affect the nation. Considering that 2014 is a mid-term election year, these legal actions and their results – as well as other issues – demand that we ask ourselves 3 questions (which I will ask at the end of this article).

Starting in New York, the controversial NY SAFE Act was ruled as constitutional by Chief U.S. District Judge William M. Skretny in Buffalo. At the same time, Judge Skretny also ruled that the limitations on magazines (to contain 7 rounds maximum),

“…fails the relevant test because the purported link between the ban and the state’s interest is tenuous, strained, and unsupported in the record.”

The NY Safe Act has been seen as a model of what President Obama has been pushing to have Congress enact nationally – and part of his Executive Orders issued in 2013, circumventing Congress. The argument being that in restricting certain types of firearms the ability of the criminal and criminally insane to engage in mass shootings will be diminished (though VP Biden admitted in February 2013 that the Executive Orders will have no impact – which was sadly proven correct later that same year). This flies in the face of the fact that the overwhelming majority of shooting deaths occur with handguns (like the Binghamton Civic Center shooting) and the 2003 First Reports Evaluating the Effectiveness of Strategies for Preventing Violence: Firearms Laws which determined,

“The Task Force found insufficient evidence to determine the effectiveness of any of the firearms laws or combinations of laws reviewed on violent outcomes.”

As well as the overall result of a gun restriction ban of “assault” firearms I reviewed in an investigation of the data over 30 years in an article Jan 11, 2013,

“…if the movement for gun restrictions as the primary safeguard to the public are correct, 75% of these kinds of tragedies will continue relatively unabated. Is the battle being waged against the 2nd Amendment, as some claim, and opposition like the NRA worth potentially stopping 1 – 2 events per year? To the families that have lost a loved one, of course. But if we are trying to increase the safety of the nation, shouldn’t the focus be on what is motivating the majority of these hateful crimes? Shouldn’t the resources be poured in to finding the root cause and eliminating it?”

As I have stated before, the delusion of safety by restricting certain arbitrary definitions of “assault weapons” and reducing magazine size is both misleading and unequal to the infringement on 2nd Amendment Rights. I agree with Judge Skretny that the magazine ban is unsupported and tenuous, as I presented in an article published on March 13, 2013

“… actively misleading the public into a false sense of safety based on pipe dreams and wishful thinking is as dangerous as any firearm ever made. We must also clearly state that using a preposterous fallacy meant to target the fear and emotion of the public to enact a politically motivated outcome is a tactic more akin to those wishing to shackle freedom than embracing or protecting it.”

Surely the debate over the NY Safe Act is not over, and will reach higher courts. Other States and the Federal Government will be watching closely, with a slew of laws to follow the ultimate outcome. Whether or not this has any effect on mass shootings is debatable, and historically leans towards being ineffective. But the impact on the 2nd Amendment may be irreversible.

On a larger scale, also on January 1, 2014, there is the news that the Government has been blocked in forcing the birth control requirement of the Obamacare law. US Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor enacted an injunction in the late hours of Dec 31 2013, that prevents enforcement of this provision of the law. The reason is the infringement of religious freedom that is being argued Obamacare restricts.

This is yet another factor that is adding to the obtuse and ever more convoluted impact of the Affordable Care Act. With each passing month more groups and classes of those required to be affected by Obamacare are being delayed or excluded from inclusion. This of course alters the projected mix of population that healthcare insurers have calculated into premiums, and projections of an increase in costs continue to become more reliable.

This is yet another example of the rushed and poorly thought out ramifications of the Affordable Care Act long-term. It may well be just another factor that helps to establish that Obamacare will fail in its purported primary mission of reducing health care costs. The full impact of cancellations, the massive and still existing problems with the Healthcare.gov website, the yet to be determined inclusion of businesses (or their decisions to opt-out of providing healthcare), and the less than projected sign up of millions of Americans as well as other provisions of the law have yet to be felt in earnest.

It is fair to say that as courts address the underlying components of Obamacare, and those excluded are mandated to be included in the wide berth of the law, the reality of what this law will mean to freedoms and costs will be seen later in the year. I hold little hope of clarity or price reductions.

Lastly there was the decision in Florida, by Judge Mary S. Scriven of the United States District Court in Orlando, to strike down the requirement of drug screening for those seeking welfare.

Judge Scriven stated,

“The court finds there is no set of circumstances under which the warrantless, suspicionless drug testing at issue in this case could be constitutionally applied.”

This of course will impact many States (29 States have considered such laws and 9 have enacted similar laws) as there is a growing view in the populace (who themselves are faced with drug tests to be employed) that such a requirement is valid and worthwhile. Many feel that those seeking public assistance should be held to the same standards as those paying for the assistance via their taxes (which I agree with). In addition, supporters point to the safety and welfare of the households where drug use does exist, that can potentially be aided by the enforcement of these drug tests as a condition of public aide.

At the core of this argument is National Treasury Employees Union v. von Raab., US Supreme Court, 1989. This was the case that the Supreme Court reviewed and upheld that drug testing of Federal employees was constitutional. This lead to the widespread use of drug testing as a requirement in the private sector.

I believe that the Supreme Court decision explains why drug testing of welfare applicants is valid – though the ruling had no private sector applications at the time. [emphasis added]

“Petitioners’ contention that the testing program is unreasonable because it is not based on a belief that testing will reveal any drug use by covered employees evinces an unduly narrow view of the context in which the program was implemented. Although it was not motivated by any perceived drug problem among Service employees, the program is nevertheless justified by the extraordinary safety and national security hazards that would attend the promotion of drug users to the sensitive positions in question. Moreover, the mere circumstance that all but a few of the employees tested are innocent does not impugn the program’s [489 U.S. 656, 658] validity, since it is designed to prevent the substantial harm that could be caused by the promotion of drug users as much as it is designed to detect actual drug use. Pp. 673-675.”

If you substitute “Welfare recipient” for “service employee” and remove “national security hazards” – almost the the same way that the private sector has done in its interpretation of the law to require drug testing – the reasoning remains intact. Thus the law, in my non-attorney opinion, is a valid law and Judge Scriven is wrong.

As 2014 moves forward, and the number of those seeking public assistance increases (as has been the trend) – placing an ever larger burden on States and the taxes of residents of those States – there will be more focus on this ruling by the Supreme Court and how it applies to the private sector as well as those seeking public assistance.

As a result of all 3 of these events, as well as many more issues, the nation will face tough decisions in 2014. Decisions that will affect the economy, freedoms, and pursuit of happiness of all Americans to some degree or another. The questions that I ask you are simple.

  • Where does your elected politicians stand on these important issues?
  • Is the position they hold the one that you (and a majority of constituent) have?
  • If it is not, why did you elect that politician?

    These 3 questions are the core reason of why I am running for the New York 22nd Congressional District seat in 2014. Many other politicians will be up for election in the mid-terms this year. But the key to re-election, in my opinion, should be the answer to these 3 questions – as opposed to the campaign promises and 30 second polispeak ads that are sure to fill airwaves.

  • Is an election a question of looking tough?

    On December 19th, Rep. Richard Hanna traveled to Chenango County and visited the Wesson gun manufacturing facility south of Norwich, NY. The move was more than just routine.

    I don’t question that Rep. Hanna believes in the 2nd Amendment, nor that he has spoken out against the NY Safe Act. These are positions that most Conservatives hold, and in as much as Rep. Hanna can be believed to be firm on any issue given his numerous flip-flops and “symbolic” votes, I accept his stated convictions.

    The thing that troubles me about this is the photo-op. Here is the photo from CNY News

    CNY News photo

    So why does this bug me?

    I get that Rep. Hanna wants to be seen as a everyday man – though he is a millionaire businessman and a member of Congress that regularly votes against Conservative positions (immigration, abortion, as well as NSA and drones). I get that he is trying to secure his position with the gun lobby, NRA, and voters that believe the 2nd Amendment is under attack (which I agree it is). That’s the purpose of the visit and the photo.

    But I find it annoying that a Representative, that didn’t bother to visit Wesson or Remington in the beginning of 2013 when President Obama was issuing 23 Executive Orders to restrict gun ownership, is using the image as if the public didn’t notice his relative silence. I find it annoying that he is taking time to visit a County he rarely has shown any concern about prior to coming under challenge for the 2014 election.

    Call me shallow, but when it comes to gun restrictions I expect a Representative to do more than say that protecting Remington Arms is only about jobs. I expect a Representative that stands for the 2nd Amendment to have a firm opinion why Executive Orders limiting freedoms is wrong and not to say,

    “I want to talk about it. No, I don’t have an opinion about it just yet.” – January 13, 2013

    Most of all, I don’t want a Representative that works at looking tough in a photo with a few firearms in the foreground in an article with no real content – essentially just a fluff piece to tout him as an advocate to a specific group of voters, in my opinion.

    I’d rather a Representative that can actually fight to get a bipartisan politically neutral Bill like HR 2310 (which helps provide gravestones to Reservists that gave the ultimate sacrifice of their life to this nation) get passed – or at the very least supported by the 89 members of Congress that are all former military, which does not include Rep. Hanna who never served in the military in any capacity. Currently it is supported by 5 former members of the military, and I wonder why its so few?

    But maybe winning the primary in 2014 and going to Congress to actually represent the voice of the NY-22 is all about good photo ops, as is the example Rep. Hanna is making apparently. Perhaps, if Rep. Hanna were an example to be followed, all it takes is a photo that makes a candidate look tough. In that case, all I have to offer is this…

    USMC 1987

    You are invited…

    Given is the fact that everyone is getting ready for Christmas and the holidays. Given is the fact that thoughts about 2014, let alone politics, is far from the minds of most Americans. Yet, we plan today to do more tomorrow.

    Barbeque ribs

    Thus, I warmly invite everyone that is interested in a good meal to the VFW Post 1449 at 103 Nanticoke Ave. Endicott, NY on January 17, 2014.

    Starting at 5:00pm there will be a BBQ Rib Dinner available – 1 pound (precooked) of Country-style barbeque ribs, green beans, and Country-style fries – all for $10. Assorted desserts will be available too. All who attend are sure to be well-fed. It’s like a slice of summer in the middle of a New York winter.

    Don’t let the politics put you off, you can come and enjoy the meal by itself.

    For those that do have an interest in how and who is representing the NY-22, I will be at the event and open to your questions. Please take the opportunity to lean more about me, why I am running, and what I plan to do if elected.

    Advance tickets are available now – you can call Roger Bensley at (607) 785-7071, of the staff at Friends to Elect Michael Vasquez to Congress at (607) 242-9247 to get your tickets.

    You can also let us know if you plan to attend via Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/MichaelVasquezForCongress). Please try to let us know in advance if possible as we do not want to waste any food, and we want everyone to have a meal if they want one.

    The event is being given by Friends to Elect Michael Vasquez to Congress. Proceeds from the event will go to my effort to become the representative of the 22nd Congressional District. If you wish donations, separate of the meal, can be made for $25, $50, up to $2,600.

    Please share this with anyone that enjoys BBQ ribs, good people, and a great time.

    Benghazi then and now – no answers, no accountability

    There are issues that face our nation that demand answers. Issues that affect our nation in its ability to conduct effective diplomatic actions, as well as reflect our nations willingness to defend our people and priorities. One such issue has been, and continues to be, the Benghazi attack on our consulate in Libya.

    While this is not a top headline issue for the media, I have had many people across the New York 22nd Congressional District ask me where I stand on this issue. I have been asked what I would do, if elected, about this.

    First, I will address what the incumbent has done. Rep. Richard Hanna was contacted directly by M V Consulting, Inc (the company I own, which maintains the political commentary site www.mvass.com) and Binghamton Political Buzz Examiner (where I am a reporter/commentator until announcing my run for Congress) on November 15, 2012 about Benghazi. This was along with Senator Schumer and Senator Gillibrand.

    The letter highlighted several concerns at the time, that remain concerns today. One question that Rep. Hanna was asked to respond to was:

    The attack on the consulate took more than 6 hours from start to finish. During that time nearby military bases sent no support troops, air gunships in the region provided no support, and CIA operatives 1 mile from the consulate were told to stand down efforts to support the consulate at least 2x. Further, air support to remove a terrorist mortar position went unheeded leading to a mortar attack that likely killed at least 1 American…

    What, therefore, are you doing to help resolve this issue to the benefit of constituents overseas, their families stateside, and the nation as a whole?

    As of 12/10/13, neither M V Consulting, Binghamton Political Examiner, nor myself directly have received a response from Rep. Hanna nor any other member of Congress we sent the letter to.

    Further, on 1/18/13, H Res 36 was presented in the House of Representatives. It’s goal is to create a special committee to resolve key issues about what happened in Benghazi and the impact on the nation. In part it would seek to:

    (4) how the relevant agencies and the executive branch responded to the attack and whether appropriate congressional notifications were made;
    (5) any improper conduct by officials relating to the attack;
    (6) recommendations on what steps Congress and the President should take to prevent future attack; and
    (7) any other relevant issues relating to the attack or the response to the attack.

    Rep. Richard Hanna does NOT support this measure. As of June 24, 2013 Rep. Hanna was on of 73 Republican members that was identified as still holding out. As of this being written Rep. Hanna continues to not support H Res 36, and any resolution it could bring to the benefit of Americans overseas that are serving the interests of the nation.

    At this time, a Google search of Rep. Richard Hanna Benghazi finds 4,600,000 results of which none in the top 5 pages shows a single comment from Rep. Hanna on this issue and where he stands.

    That is the representation constituents of the NY-22 are getting at this time on the Benghazi issue. I do not believe this reflects what the public wants done, nor is it in the best interest of the nation in my opinion.

    I believe that support for H Res 36 should be vocal and clear. This is an issue that may be affecting all our Ambassadors and Embassies across the globe. Members of Congress have an obligation to determine if the murder of our Ambassador and 3 Americans is a systemic problem, a failure of leadership at various Government organizations, or a combination of the 2.

    America cannot ask citizens to voluntarily place themselves in harm’s way, so that they can act in the best interest of the nation diplomatically, without providing a credible and genuine assurance that if another Benghazi-styled attack were to occur they will be protected. Such assurance is deeply in question today.

    As of this writing, no one has been held accountable for the Benghazi attack on our consulate. There has been no impact in the State Department, Homeland Security, CIA, military, or any other Agency of the Government. All those initially brought before Congress, and those that were temporarily suspended, are back to work without reprimand at this time (with the exception of then-Secretary of State Clinton, who has moved on to seek other political ambitions apparently).

    There has been, effectively, zero accountability. At the same time, there remains no answer on whether or not this tragedy was cause by a systemic problem, a failure of leadership (and/or how high that failure went up the chain of command), or a combination of both. This is unacceptable.

    I believe that our Representative should be acting like Rep. Trey Gowdy of South Carolina

    If elected, I would support Rep. Gowdy and other members of Congress in there effort to answer these questions and provide accountability. I will support providing answers and accountability – including prosecution where needed – so that every American working in our Embassies across the world can do so with the credible assurance that we will never allow an attack like Benghazi to occur again. I will actively work to provide answers to the media and the public, on this and other issues that the American people expect and deserve a forthright answer on.

    That is one of the differences between Rep. Hanna and myself. I invite you to www.MichaelVasquezforCongress.com to learn more about be, and lend me your support if you agree that we deserve better from a Representative in Congress in 2014.

    %d bloggers like this: