Hannah Defeats Tenney In Ny Primary

06.25.14 | Sarah Harnisch

Representative Richard Hanna of Barneveld cleared the field for another term in Congress with a victory Tuesday over state Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney of New Hartford.

Hanna won the Republican primary for the 22nd Congressional District and has no Democratic opponent on the November ballot.

The Associated Press declared Hanna the victor around 11 p.m.

Hanna held a commanding 1,553-vote lead over Tenney — 14,592 to 13,039 votes —with 73 percent of ballots counted, according to unofficial results from the state Board of Elections.

New York State Republican Party Chairman Ed Cox and Broome County GOP Chairman Bijoy Datta congratulated Hanna.

"Today’s win shows that voters want pragmatic leadership,’’ Datta said. “They don’t want government that grinds to a halt or political grandstanding.’’

Polls closed at 9 p.m. in the eight counties inside the district, which stretches from the Pennsylvania border to Lake Ontario.

The race drew a flurry of spending by outside advocacy groups in the days before Tuesday’s election.

American Unity Political Action Committee, which supports equality for gays and lesbians, reported spending $656,776 on TV ads, direct mail and telephone calls opposing Tenney and supporting Hanna.

Another super PAC, Patriot Prosperity PAC, spent $57,244 on direct mail and media buys opposing Tenney in the last couple of weeks. The PAC was active in the 2012 election, when it received $1 million in donations from billionaire Sheldon Adelson.

Tenney received much less financial support from outside groups. The National Organization for Marriage, which opposes gay marriage, spent $2,465 on phone surveys supporting her campaign.

The Citizens United Political Victory Fund announced Monday it was contacting 50,000 households in the congressional district using a robo-call from former GOP Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania urging Republicans to support Tenney.

The race marked a test of whether an incumbent Main Street Republican backed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and National Rifle Association could survive opposition from GOP activists aligned with the tea party.