Rss

Rep. Richard Hanna attacks with “bait & switch” tactic to avoid voters

What do you do if you are an incumbent with a record of attacking your own Party, voting against the wishes of constituents, and supporting job creation for foreigners over Americans? In the case of Rep. Richard Hanna, you avoid any public instance of defending your record and instead try to distract voters. A classic bait and switch manuever, one of the very worst of immoral sales tactics.

To be clear, on 4/21/14, WNBF News Radio and Time Warner Cable invited Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney and the incumbent to debate the issues. This is a critical offer as there is no Democrat in the race and whomever wins the NY Primary on June 24th will defacto be the next Representative in Congress for the NY 22nd Congressional District.

Assemblywoman Tenney accepted. Rep. Richard Hanna made no comment. Until April 24th. That when he went on the offensive in an offense to voters.

Rep. Hanna chose to try to steer the discussion away from the issue at hand, which is his voting record and positions he has taken. Instead he has attacked Claudia Tenney about doing her job as an Assemblywoman. He has tried to shift the race for the NY-22 to a race for the 101st Assembly seat – which is not even in question at this time.

Hidden deep in the attack on Tenney was the following response about the actual issue, the debates, “A Hanna spokesperson says the Congressman has neither officially accepted nor refused the offer to debate.”

Neither refused or accepted? Which is it? Why is there such ambivalence?

Still, the response is not shocking. Rep. Hanna took the same stance in the summer of 2014, while the nation and the world took a position on the unilateral actions of President Obama and Syria. At the time I stated,

“[Hanna] is 1 of 2 Republicans, and 1 of 16 members of Congress representing New York State, that have clearly stated they have no position on the issue at this time.

When the use-of-force resolution is finalized, I will review it closely to determine whether or not actions enabled by it advance vital interests of the United States and are in the best interest of upstate New Yorkers” – Rep. Richard Hanna 9/4/13

…@electvasquezny – “Leadership is not about winning every battle or being right in every debate, its about decisiveness in the face of ambiguity.”

Of course Rep. Hanna learned from his honest portrayal of his bandwagoning attempt in 2013. Thus we see that in 2014, rather than take a stand so that voters can actually evaluate him, he has chosen to deflect away from the issue. He is actively hiding from the voters – a sure sign in my mind that he is aware that his record will cost him the election if anyone looks at it.

Once again Rep. Hanna assumes that the public is too dumb to see his actions for what they are, and he hopes (I believe) that they are too apathetic to take action in the Primary in June. I believe he is wrong on both counts.

The NY-22, and America as a whole, deserve to have politicians that are willing to stand up and be accountable. Congress is rife with manipulators that are only successful at maintaining their own positions of power, and the approval rating reflects this. It is well beyond time that we see principled, consistent, accountable representation on the floor of Congress.

The fact that Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney has a record that confirms this is a threat to the re-election of Rep. Hanna, and thus – without a record of consistency or even publicly supported positions – the Hanna campaign is resorting to dirty tricks and mudslinging.

I think we can clearly see why he won’t take a position on a debate.

Response from WIBX 950AM

The following is the verbatim written response from Jeff Monaski of WIBX 950AM. This response is a followup to the phone conversation on 3/28/14.

I accept the explanation of Mr. Monaski that this was an unintentional error, and has occurred on this program in the past, on calls of various natures. I thank Mr. Monaski for contacting me swiftly, and verifying that this was not an act of bias or misrepresentation, and no edit occurred – live or in post-edit.

As stated in my open letter, and as I have always done in my work as a political commentator for nearly a decade, I am providing the verbatim response so that there is clarity for all who may be concerned.

************************************************************************************************************

Mr. Vasquez,

It was nice speaking with you this morning and I wanted to follow up with an email to clear up any misunderstanding as it relates to your interview on the WIBX First News with Keeler in the Morning program on WIBX 950 in Utica.

As I indicated on the phone with you, I absolutely disagree with your labeling of the interview and subsequent email as a misrepresentation of your comments/answers, and I do not believe there was any bias during the interview. It was also mentioned in your email to us that you felt the interview was edited:

…That recording makes it clear that my answers were edited, either live or in post-production, to limit the information that I believe is vital for voters and the general public in this election. It is an obvious and crude manipulation, the reason for which is unknown to me – nor that I care about….

I want to assure you that this is not the case with your interview, nor is it ever the case with our morning show or any local programming provided by WIBX. The audio found in ‘Keeler Show Notes’ (which can be found here: http://wibx950.com/keeler-in-the-morning-show-notes-for-thurs-march-27th/) is the full, exact and complete interview that aired LIVE when you joined us by phone on the morning of March 27, 2014.

There is one point in the interview where host Bill Keeler attempts to ask a question, and does so with the belief that you had completed your previous answer. In doing so, he lowers the ‘telephone’ line, which you are on. This is common and was not done to edit, mute or otherwise distort your answer. You did not hear his next question and continued to answer the previous one, as heard in the audio file you referenced. There was no fault of either party, and does sometimes happen with a fast paced, interview program.

We thank you for taking the time to join us on the show, and hope that you will consider doing so in the future to discuss your candidacy for New York’s 22nd Congressional District.

And, thank you for reaching out because this provided an opportunity to clear the air, if you will. I did not want you to think we edited or changed the content of your interview.

In the case that your supporters feel this is the case, I would appreciate you sharing this email – and your own feelings – to correct the record.

Thank you again

Jeff Monaski
WIBX Program Director

Media bias in the NY-22 mid-term elections

To the management of WIBX 950AM,

I am writing this letter in regard to my interview on 3/27/14 at 7:20am, on the Keeler in the Morning program on your station WIBX 950AM.

I am a candidate for the NY 22nd Congressional District, and as such I have had well over a dozen news media interviews, as well as speeches with questions & answers and private conversations with various political organizations where I have been grilled for literally hours on every aspect of the congressional race. In all cases I have never encountered the apparent bias that has occurred on this program.

While I cannot confirm how this program was heard live, I have listened to the interview posted on your website for the public. That recording makes it clear that my answers were edited, either live or in post-production, to limit the information that I believe is vital for voters and the general public in this election. It is an obvious and crude manipulation, the reason for which is unknown to me – nor that I care about.

WIBX 950AM, Keeler in the Morning

Keeler in the Morning


Let me be clear – the recording provided via your website active displays that my a portion of my answers were muted or otherwise cut off as I was speaking, the track overlaid with Mr. Keeler speaking, and then returns to me continuing to speak to the question asked. That is manipulation of the highest order and is beneath the quality of service I am sure you try to provide your audience.

I am not afraid of relevant questions asked of me. I am an advocate of the public making their own choice in this critical primary that will likely decide the congressional Representative for the NY-22. But I am livid when an interviewer unilaterally decides what content the public can or cannot receive in response to a question that is being asked of a candidate.

This action is a disservice to the public, and apparently may be a reflection of favoritism of Mr. Keeler for the incumbent. While I have no concern for what political preferences Mr. Keeler may have, it is a type of violation of the 1st Amendment to impose his preferences on the public and an insult to me as a candidate.

I will NOT accept another interview with Mr. Keeler, though I am open to interviews with any other member of your staff and organization. While it is your right to employ whomever you wish, it is my right to decline to support actions and/or individuals that I feel are deceptive and against the public good.

I hold no ill will to you or your radio station. I would ask that Mr. Keeler admit his actions, and publicly apologize for his apparent manipulation and deception against the public. Even if this action is taken, I will not interview with him again on any matter as I feel I cannot trust his character or intentions.

Sincerely

Michael Vasquez
Candidate for the NY 22nd Congressional District, 2014

** I have made this letter public as the actions taken directly affect the public, and they deserve to be aware of this. I will happily provide equal public notice of any response you request or provide to this letter. **

Sent to: Jeff Monaski, WIBX Program Director; Karen Carey, WIBX General Manager; TownSquare Media Corporate offices

%d bloggers like this: