Tracy Mitrano said she plans for victory in her campaign for the 23rd congressional district, which includes the Greater Olean area.
“I could not be more thankful to the thousands of people that have supported this campaign for three years now,” Mitrano said during a media call Thursday.
Mitrano, the Democratic challenger running against Tom Reed, the Republican incumbent, said she believes Reed will fail for several reasons: his vote against the Justice in Policing Act of 2020, his alliance with “political packs,” personal use of campaign money and his lack of debates.
The Justice in Policing Act could provide a solution to race-motivated crime in policing by creating federal oversight, Mitrano said.
“We all just want a running start to equal opportunity, justice and community,” Mitrano said. “I stand for members of good, strong police, and I stand for the communities that they serve and protect.”
Mitrano called out Reed as two-faced, saying his votes and his talk of bipartisanship say two different things considering his association with political action committees.
“He can say whatever he wants, but we know he says one thing and does another,” Mitrano said.
According to Mitrano, individuals can only give up to $2,800 to a campaign; political action committees, typically representing businesses, can give $5,000 per election.
Political action committees also can give $15,000 annually to any national party committee.
Reed is in one of these “political packs,” Mitrano said.
For instance, this year, Corning Inc. contributed $30,500 to Reed’s campaign, $5,000 of it through its PAC.
“I am not in a competition to raise more money than Tom Reed because that’s a competition I can’t win,” Mitrano said.
She stated that many people have been willing to donate, volunteer and otherwise help her campaign.
Meanwhile, she claimed, Reed has spent campaign funds on personal purchases, such as cigars, hotels and personal travel.
“I will never waste a dime of my supporters' money because it’s going to go to (the campaign),” Mitrano said.
Mitrano challenged Reed to a debate with her.
And the candidate said she intends to continue her weekly online show, “Tuesday Talks with Tracy,” which she started as a way to display her policies, speak with professionals on various subjects and reach out to people during quarantining. Though quarantining may be nearing an end, she still finds the show helpful.
“Sometimes you find things when you’re looking for something else,” Mitrano said.
An attendee of the media call asked Mitrano her thoughts on violence during Black Lives Matter protests.
She separated rioting and protesting, saying, “I’ve never seen anything even approaching a criminal act. I oppose any criminal act, but this country was founded on free speech.”
Mitrano added she has not seen any violence in the protests she has attended in the 23rd district, listing Olean, Jamestown, Geneva and Ithaca.
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