VESTAL, NY (WSKG) – The Republican primary in New York’s 22nd congressional district is down to two candidates, after Franklin Sager officially dropped out of the race on Saturday.
Though former Congresswoman Claudia Tenney has high-profile support and a cash advantage, former Broome County Legislator George Phillips isn’t backing down.
Phillips said he wants the opportunity to debate Tenney before June’s primary. He thinks a debate will show why he’s the best candidate to face incumbent Democrat Anthony Brindisi in November’s general election.
“I would like to take her up on this offer to debate as much as possible and am looking for debate opportunities with local news and civic organizations, on college campuses or with whatever group will host us,” he said in a press release.
Tenney has said Phillips lacks enough support across the district to win. NY-22 covers part of central New York and the Southern Tier, including Binghamton, Norwich and Cortland.
Tenney has been endorsed by New York’s Conservative Party and President Trump. She also had a big fundraising advantage as of the last FEC reporting deadline in January, raising $300,389.44 over the final quarter of 2019, that compares to $27,236.61 from Phillips.
Phillips and Tenney also faced off in the 2016 Republican primary. Tenney won that three-person race, while Phillips finished in third.