U.S. Rep. Richard Hanna won’t be taking a day off after his victory Tuesday over Democratic challenger Dan Lamb.
He wants to start setting up a new district office in Binghamton.
He’s got ideas about how to reverse a decision by the federal Army Corps of Engineers that appeared to harm hopes of netting a nanotechnology manufacturer for a site in Marcy.
He’s ready to keep pushing to protect the military installations at the former Griffiss Air Force Base in Rome.
“I think because of the solid win we had, it gives me a capacity to plead my case a little differently in Washington,” the 61-year-old Republican said about 12 hours after Lamb called him to concede.
The new 22nd District was created as part of the 2012 statewide redistricting process. It throws the Utica area together with Binghamton and its suburbs.
Hanna is the first-term representative of the current 24th District, which will cease to exist at the end of this year. Lamb, 49, is a former aid to Maurice Hinchey, the longtime Democratic representative for the Southern Tier.
Hanna bested Lamb with about 61 percent of the votes in the new eight-county district.
Hanna said he had received a congratulatory call from U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, and he had written his own note of congratulations to U.S. President Barack Obama, who also won re-election Tuesday.
Hanna said his decisive victory, combined with Republican losses in the state, is a validation of his more moderate brand of Republicanism.
“This gives me the authority to say if you want to continue to hold the North East people have to be able to comfortably vote their district and their conscience,” Hanna said. “And not have this expectation that there be a litmus test to be a good Republican.”
Hanna holds positions on some social issues that are more in line with the Democratic Party platform. For example, he does not oppose abortion and opposed the defunding Planned Parenthood and public media.
“New York state is frankly not the deep South,” he said. “It’s got different people and different interests and I’ve been a good example of what can be successful.”
Hanna said he wants to work for what he terms “an American competitiveness agenda.”
“It’s all about rebuilding the middle class,” he said.
Included in the plan would be reforming health care, reforming the complicated tax code, developing a national energy policy and creating better trade agreements.
“These are things we talk about ad nauseam but never do,” he said.
He also said he wants to move forward with a bill to give more support to education in math, science and technology.
Page 2 of 2 - The best way to accomplish these and other goals is to change the partisan nature of Washington, he said. “We need to get along,” he said. “Compromise is not treason.”