6/21 – Mitrano Receives Endorsement from First Female Town Supervisor of Geneva Mary Luckern

PENN YAN — Today, presumptive NY-23 Democratic Congressional frontrunner Tracy Mitrano received the endorsement from Mary Luckern, the first female Town Supervisor of Geneva.

Town Supervisor Luckern released the following statement:

I spent over four decades working in education and shaping young minds. I believe that Tracy’s background as an educator is essential to making sure we tap into the potential of all our youth. Her emphasis on promoting education, whether it be community college, or trade and vocational training is essential to developing an economy and a workforce that is prepared for 21st Century jobs.

As the first female Town Supervisor of Geneva, I am endorsing Tracy because I believe that she has the policy experience to know how to navigate Washington, and also the compassion to represent the people of this district.”

In response, Tracy Mitrano said the following:

“I am honored by this endorsement from Mary Luckner, the former Geneva Town Supervisor and fellow educator. Ensuring access to quality education and training has been a key priority throughout my campaign. Too many young people today are strapped with life-long student debt simply for seeking the tools and skills needed to gain employment. This is not the way to create a workforce able to compete in today’s global economy. I’m ready to fight to put people first by getting greedy banking interests out of our education system.”

 

3/19 – Women’s Equality Party Endorses Mitrano

The Women’s Equality Party (WEP) has endorsed Tracy Mitrano for Congress in New York’s 23rd District.

In a statement, WEP Chairwoman Susan Zimet thanked all of the candidates who sought the party’s endorsement and said the party had completed a thorough review of each candidate. Zimet said, “The Women’s Equality Party is proud to endorse Tracy Mitrano for Congress. Women in this country still face significant discrimination, particularly in the workplace. Mitrano’s track record of community service and advocacy for marginalized communities throughout her personal and professional life, proves she is the person we need in Congress to fight for gender equality.”

WEP Regional Leader Debra Puckhaber also praised Mitrano’s ongoing work to advance the rights of women. “Tracy Mitrano is a champion and fierce advocate of Women’s Equality Party tenets, such as defending access to affordable healthcare, to protecting women’s rights in the workplace. We are confident she will bring that same spirit to Congress. She has a clear message which resonates across New York’s 23rd District, and a creative vision for our area that will translate into sustainable, concrete results.”

3/16 – Watkins Glen Mayor Schimizzi Endorses Mitrano for Congress

Watkins Glen Mayor Sam Schimizzi has endorsed Democrat Tracy Mitrano for Congress in NY-23.

In his statement, Schimizzi said, “I am pleased to announce that I have endorsed Tracy Mitrano for Congress. With compassion and a bias for action to meet the challenges we are facing, Tracy is absolutely the leader we need representing New York’s 23rd District in Washington. Her comprehensive economic development plan focuses on the real needs of constituents in places like Watkins Glen–defending access to affordable health care, helping small businesses, building vital infrastructure, addressing transportation challenges, providing our children with quality education and training, and keeping our environment safe and clean. We need Tracy in Congress because she will work tirelessly to help our communities thrive.”

3/9 – Ithaca Mayor Svante Myrick Endorses Tracy

Tonight, Ithaca Mayor Svante Myrick endorsed Democratic Congressional candidate Tracy Mitrano running in New York’s 23rd District.

Mayor Myrick said in a statement, “I am so pleased to endorse Tracy Mitrano for Congress. The upcoming election in November is a chance to unite around a candidate who has the integrity, leadership, experience, and vision to truly represent the 23rd in Congress. Tracy’s focus on issues such as creating jobs, defending access to affordable health care, developing infrastructure, and protecting the environment are all issues that are important to constituents from Ithaca to Hornell to Wellsville and Jamestown, regardless of their political affiliation. Having spent her entire live in Western and Southern Tier New York, she has a genuine love for this area that will make her an excellent steward of this District. We must unite around these common values to elect someone who truly has the best interest of our beautiful District at heart, and that’s Tracy Mitrano.”

In response, Tracy Mitrano said the following, “I would like to thank Mayor Myrick for his endorsement. Ithaca has a special place in my heart. It took this Rochester native in and gave me a good place to work and to raise my two wonderful sons. I look forward to working with Mayor Myrick and leaders across the District to address the challenges facing the 23rd and to bring opportunity back to our area.”

3/5 – Tioga County Democratic Committee Chair Endorses Tracy

Today, Tracy received the endorsement of Tioga County Democratic Committee Chair Diane Lechner. Lechner has served as Chair since 2014 and is known for her hard work, commitment to her community, and her dedication to getting Democratic candidates elected into office.

Lechner released the following statement on her endorsement:

“Today, I am pleased to announce my endorsement for Tracy Mitrano for Congress in the Democratic primary for New York’s 23rd Congressional District. I have tremendous respect for the hard work and determination demonstrated by all the primary candidates so far in this race, but I believe that Tracy is unique in her ability to connect with voters and articulate her vision for the district. We need a representative in Congress who appreciates the difficult choices middle-class families have had to make due to stagnant wages and underemployment … who understands national security issues, especially as they relate to US cyber-security … and who acknowledges that healthcare is a right, not a privilege. Tracy Mitrano is the candidate who is most able to take Tom Reed to task on these issues and that’s why she has earned my support.”

3/1 – Jamestown City Councilwoman Weinert Endorses Tracy

This week, Democratic Congressional candidate Tracy Mitrano running in New York’s 23rd District received the endorsement of Jamestown City Councilwoman Vanessa Weinert. Weinert, who was born and raised in Jamestown, was sworn on to the Jamestown City Council in January.  

About her endorsement of Mitrano, Weinert said the following:

I am proud to endorse Tracy Mitrano for Congress. Tracy has all the qualities we desperately need in the 23rd. Out of all the candidates running, she has the most well-rounded background and the expertise needed to confront the many challenges facing our district. Our district is complex and constituents have many different political ideologies, and it will take a candidate who can bring us all together to win in November. Tracy was born and raised in Western New York and has lived her adult life in the Southern Tier. She appeals to people from many walks of life and across the 23rd. I firmly believe she can unite this district.

Tracy’s plans on important issues such as health care, infrastructure, jobs, education, and income inequality are equally impressive. A lot of development is happening in downtown Jamestown right now. Growing up in the City of Rochester, Tracy witnessed firsthand urban development. As a member of the Town of Ithaca’s Planning Board for 10 years, she can appreciate the housing issues that Jamestown faces. She wants to invest in municipal utilities even for the internet. Tracy has a futures-focused, creative vision for this District to bring about the economic growth we need.

Our community also wants to feel inspired by a candidate. The first time I met Tracy at an event in Jamestown, she had the entire crowd in awe and excited about working together to turn this District around. People of the 23rd want to feel like their voices are being heard and understood by its elected representatives. They want a candidate with a fresh perspective and one that will fight for them. That is what Tracy is all about.”

2/27 – Working Families Party Endorses Mitrano

Regional leaders of the Working Families Party (WFP) have voted overwhelmingly to recommend endorsement of Democratic candidate Tracy Mitrano in NY-23 to the WFP. This all but guarantees Mitrano’s place on the ballot in November. The endorsement comes after an extensive application and interview process with each of the Democratic candidates running.

Sue Skidmore, former Mayor of Elmira and State Committee Member of WFP, said, “Tracy Mitrano is clearly the right candidate to take on Tom Reed. She has the best campaign structure and plan in place to win in November. Her deep roots to Western New York, extensive leadership experience, and her authentic connection with voters from all walks of life make her the ideal candidate.”

The WNY Vice Chair-Chautauqua Area of the WFP, Robert E Dando Jr, said, “Of all the candidates running, Tracy has the strongest vision and plan to turn things around in NY-23. Her plans to bring 21st Century jobs to the 23rd, develop local infrastructure, and defend access to affordable health care set her apart from other candidates running.”

In response to WFP’s endorsement, Tracy Mitrano released the following statement:

“I am truly appreciative to have received the Working Families Party’s support. WFP’s endorsement is essential to a successful primary in June and a win in the general election in November. With their support, I will proudly continue to fight for an economy that works for working and middle class people in this district, not just the one percent, and a democracy in which every voice is heard. Constituents in New York’s 23rd District deserve to have access to good jobs, a quality education, and affordable healthcare, and that is exactly what I will work for in Congress.”

Making Sure People Have Enough to Eat

In New York’s 23rd district, so many hard-working people can barely afford to put food on their table. In some parts of the district, up to 45% of students are on free and reduced lunch programs at school because they do not have enough to eat at home. This is an important issue for our campaign, so we spoke to a local expert–Maureen Curry from Olean, who has seen this issue up close and personal.

Curry, a retired librarian, works at a food pantry in Olean. At this pantry, she serves many people every day what the pantry can afford to give. All the way from young kids, to working parents, Curry sees hunger everywhere.

“It’s not like these people are getting handouts by the government. They are working sometimes fifty hours a week and still have to come to the pantry for food,” Curry said.

Curry originally got involved with the pantry after her retiring. She had moved into a house, and could see a homeless shelter from her back window. When she found out they were looking for extra hands, Curry stepped up. Now, she has been with the pantry for seven years.

“I have loved every second of it,” Curry said.

A lot of these issues boil down to what the federal government has done to help the working class, or rather the lack of what they have done. Different programs, like welfare reform and social security, aren’t doing what they had originally intended to do. This hinders people from any sort of ability to buy steady food.

“The average monthly income [of people coming to] the pantry where I work is $1,338,” Curry said. “That isn’t nearly enough to live on, which is why I am in favor of raising the minimum wage everywhere.”

Tom Reed, the current congressman of the 23rd district in New York, promised to ensure living wages for the people in his district and creating jobs for everyone. However, in his now eight years of representing the 23rd district, he has done very little to help in this area.

Reed is part of the Ways and Means committee in Congress, which addresses things like social security and tax reform. Yet, recently Reed has shown he hasn’t cared about those not making enough to even put food on their table by supporting the tax reform, which benefits the wealthy. The tax bill also adds a $1.5 trillion deficit that will be paid for by cuts to the very social programs meant to help hardworking families in the 23rd put food on the table.

According the Census Bureau, there are 21,028 people living in congressional district 23 who make less than ten thousand dollars a year. There are another 15,445 people living in the district that make between ten thousand and $14,999 a year. In this district, ten percent of all families live below the poverty level. 40,617 people are living with out health insurance.

Curry has multiple ideas on how to get the federal government more involved with taking action against rural hunger and can improve living wages for everyone. Her plans include creating a more sustainable way of producing food, which would also create jobs.

“I don’t think people should be given handouts, but the federal government should wait three or six months after someone has acquired a job before taking their welfare away from them,” Curry said.

Curry is involved in growing community gardens to help provide more nutritional food. Gardens in front of the pantry have also been helpful because people can grow their own healthy food. It gives them something better to eat and provides jobs to those looking.

“A lot of the people who come into the pantry are overweight, and that is because the food they can afford aren’t all that healthy. These gardens we created provide a long-term solution,” Curry said.

A good economy is dependent on having healthy people, and access to nutritional food is a large part of that. Fixing problems Curry sees every day starts by having representatives who listen to what the people are asking for and what they need. It’s not easy making changes in Congress, but it is what elected officials are suppose to strive to do. Elected officials, like Reed, aren’t meant to take the easy way out or to only benefit those who have money. Change is needed in this district to help combat rural hunger and improve rural development and that change starts with a new representative.

Tracy Wins Tompkins County Straw Poll In a Landslide

Tracy Mitrano won the Tompkins County Democratic Committee straw poll conducted on February 12th, receiving 297 of the 571 votes—more votes than all the other candidates received combined. Participants voted in the straw poll after the candidates participated in a round-table in front of a packed audience that was largely focused on how the candidates planned to beat incumbent Tom Reed and their plans for the district.

In response to her win in Tompkins, Mitrano released the following statement:

Thank you to Tompkins County for the incredible support. The energy for my campaign that I saw last night mirrors the enthusiasm I have experienced all across the district. This district is ready for change after years of neglect. Tom Reed’s same tired tactics of trying to divide this district each election cycle will not work this time for one simple reason: our love for this district is more powerful than that. We have a long road ahead of us still, but I am more confident than I have ever been that this is the year we will bring real representation to NY-23.

Click here to read a summary of the event.