Bob Lonsberry

Bob Lonsberry

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LONSBERRY: Carpet-Bagging Tenney Should Stay Out of NY 23

Claudia Tenney’s family has lived in the Mohawk Valley for generations.


               My family has lived in the Southern Tier a few generations longer than that.


               She knows the Mohawk Valley, and I know the Southern Tier.


               And I know she has no business running for Congress to represent the Southern Tier. None whatsoever. In fact, her announcement today that she wants to be the candidate in the new 23rd District of New York is a disgusting mix of opportunism and carpet bagging.


               To be honest, it just pisses me off.


               I’m sick and gottdam tired of the Southern Tier being treated like crap. We have to take other people’s garbage, we have to take other people’s prisoners, we have to take other people’s monstrous wind turbines, we have to take other people’s solar farms, we have to take other people’s mandates, and now – apparently – we have to take other people’s politicians.


               And, again, that just pisses me off.


               Don’t get me wrong. I like Claudia Tenney. I encouraged her to run for re-election, and have supported her every time she’s been on the ballot. I’m glad she’s turning into a frequent face on Fox, and I like her fighting spirit.


               But what the hell does she know about the hills and valleys and priorities of the Southern Tier?


               Right now, I’d walk up and hand her a $20 bill if she could spell “Cattaraugus” and “Chautauqua” correctly. Twenty more if she could add “Canisteo” or “Cohocton” or tell me how Horseheads of Big Flats got their names, or what they do at Lily Dale or what they grow in Westfield. Another $20 if she’s ever had salt-rising bread or if there’s any Cuba cheese in her refrigerator. What are the names of the Native American reservations in the 23rd District? What knife company is in Olean, what mattress factory is in Jamestown, and where do you buy pancakes in Angelica?


I’d like to put her behind the wheel of a car and ask her to take me on a driving tour of this grand swath of somebody else’s homeland she thinks she ought to “represent” in Washington.


Seriously. Could she find her way there? Could she find her way through there? Can she tell us the last time she was in any of these Southern Tier counties? Has she ever even been to some of them in her entire life?


This place is sacred to those of us whose lives and heritage are planted in these verdant hills. We are a special kind of people – whether we use the local pronunciations or still speak with a Long Island accent. Those of us who were born here or who chose to live here hold it dear.


And we’re frigging over being somebody else’s doormat.


Democrat policies – contemptuous of our culture, values and voting tendencies – have oppressed our freedom, destroyed our jobs, and shipped off our kids. They are intent on impoverishing and depopulating our region, and it’s working for them, with families forced out by the tens of thousands. The Democrats have been at war with the Southern Tier for a generation.


And now the Republicans want a turn.


And they think they can pluck their wounded congresswoman out of her suddenly Democrat district and transplant her to an entirely different region, just because we’ve got “Trump 2024” flags hanging on our barns and out in front of our houses. Hell yes, this is Trump country, and, hell yes, we’re Republican.


But we’re not your Republican bitch.


And we can elect one of our own, thank you very much.


We wouldn’t take the Democrats’ nuclear dump, and we’re not going to take the Republicans’ political dump.


These counties and towns are among the poorest in America, and we don’t have money or power or friends in high places. But we have our pride, and our spirit of independence, and we’ll be damned if we’re going to give up our seat in Congress so that some rich lady inconvenienced by the census can stay on the Washington social circuit.


The Southern Tier has plenty of experienced, homegrown leaders who are qualified and capable of serving in Congress. Chemung County Executive Chris Moss, Senator Tom O’Mara, Assemblyman Phil Palmesano, Steuben County Republican Chair Joe Sempolinski, Senator George Borrello, Assemblyman Joe Giglio – and any number of others all across the district who carry this place in their heart, stood strong for Donald Trump, and will never falter in their faithfulness to the Constitution.


We’re the Southern Tier, and we can stand and speak for ourselves.


We don’t need or want Claudia Tenney. Glad to support her where she’s from, won’t tolerate her where we’re from.


Hunt the deer in your own woods, and stay the hell out of ours.

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