BINGHAMTON — A second conservative Republican has officially thrown his hat into the ring for next year’s race for the 22nd Congressional District.
Michael Vasquez, of Binghamton, a 45-year-old auto insurance agent and former Marine reservist, announced this week he will run in a primary for the seat, which is currently held by Republican Richard Hanna.
Vasquez’ announcement comes on the heels of of conservative Republican Michael Kicinski, of Earlville.
Both expressed frustration with Hanna, who is in his second term.
“He hasn’t given any clear answers,” Vasquez said of Hanna. “He is on both sides of everything. If we can’t trust that, how can we trust our representative to reflect the people and their district.”
Hanna’s office declined to comment on Vasquez’ decision to run.
In April, Vasquez announced he was exploring the possibility of a run. He said since then, he has disagreed with positions Hanna has taken on issues ranging from abortion to immigration to Syria.
“I believe in a strong observation of the Constitution, I believe in being fiscally responsible and in protecting our nation and our nation’s interests, both domestically and abroad,” he said. “I believe if we aren’t doing these things, we are going down a path that will destroy the nation, and I am afraid of that.”