NY-19 is one of the most contested midterm elections in the country. As with many other races this district is imperative in deciding whether the House will remain red or turn blue. Antonio Delgado received the majority of the votes and has done an impressive job of standing up to Faso. The two are extremely close in the running, with Delgado behind Faso by only 1% in the most recent polls. It is no exaggeration to say that in this race, every single vote counts.
Beating Faso is no easy feat, given the institutionalized party support behind him. Because the district is heavily split, Republican PACS have poured thousands of dollars into racist attack ads against Delgado which focus on his previous career as a rapper, during which he rapped about topics such as unity during the Iraq war. In one particular song, Delgado took issue with rampant misogyny in rap, but those lyrics have been taken out of context in the ads.
Faso has refused to denounce the ads. During his visit to campus, Faso said “I don’t know about you, but I don’t think it’s okay to be saying ‘trick ass hoes’,” fully knowing that Delgado did not insult women in his song. Delgado has faced this and other criticism gracefully, combating these attacks by showcasing his passion for helping the people of NY-19 and holding a town hall in every district.
Faso’s time has passed. He has failed the voters on a myriad of issues. He frames issues in the negative and frequently takes a xenophobic stance regarding his opponent. This rhetoric frequently leads Faso to lose sight of the substance of the issues he is supposed to be addressing. When a bully is leading our nation, examples of decorum by politicians are to be commended. Delgado is young, well educated, and unyielding. We need his strength in Congress.
Faso also does not support women’s issues; at most, he offers weak opposition against those who seek to remove women’s rights. Faso was for repealing the Affordable Care Act and replacing it with the new Republican healthcare plan, stripping funding from Planned Parenthood. When questioned here at Bard, Faso refused to support Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, and he framed Kavanaugh as the societal victim. We don’t want someone in office who defunds Planned Parenthood, and who doesn’t take survivors seriously. Delgado, on the other hand, unequivocally offered his support to Dr. Ford, has said that sexual assault guidelines on college campuses need to be improved, and is endorsed by Planned Parenthood.
While Faso recognizes the reality of climate change, his lack of action on the issue is reprehensible. Faso is a former fracking lobbyist and an ally to Scott Pruitt who voted to deregulate coal dumping in public waters. A record like this is unacceptable, particularly in our current environment. The recent climate change report published by the UN proves that we need a strong plan of action if we want a livable planet for future generations, and Faso does not have one.
Delgado knows that climate change is man-made. He understands that action is needed. He denounced Faso’s decision to overturn the Stream Protection Rule and promised to work to fix the damage the legislation has done. These protections are increasingly necessary, as the recent plans to establish new anchorages for oil tankers near communities like Kingston grow imminent. Delgado believes in our future and will work for its existence.
Faso has failed to address these issues, as well as many more, resulting in the weekly “Faso Friday” demonstrations by concerned citizens outside his Kingston office, meant to remind Faso that he works for the people. Delgado has attended Bard several times, and at all events has answered questions and reassured us that if elected that he will not shy away from questioning like his opponent does.
We need a strong voice representing us. Faso constantly reminds us that he is listed as the 18th most bipartisan member of the house. That is little comfort when he still does not fight for so many of the issues people care about. Delgado will. If he wins we’ll make sure that he is held accountable. We need someone in office who will advocate for climate change, who will support women, will address issues of sexual assault and is someone who makes time for his constituents. Antonio Delgado is the only choice, and he needs your vote, so get out and give it.