(Encompasses all of Albany and Schenectady counties, and parts of Montgomery, Rensselaer, and Saratoga counties)
Democratic, Working Families, Independent, Women’s Equality parties
Born in Amsterdam, Tonko has been a U.S. congressman since 2009. Prior to that, he was president of the New York Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), a state assemblyman and served on the Montgomery County Board of Supervisors.
Expansion of clean energies, green jobs, affordable options; reducing dependence on fossil fuels
Would work to improve flaws in the Affordable Care Act, improve delivery and focus on prevention
Favors “responsible budgeting process that focuses on economic growth and ensures billionaires and major corporations pay their fair share.”
Supports policies that incentivize small businesses, invest in infrastructure, and “re-shore” manufacturing jobs
Voted in favor of the Iran Nuclear Deal, saying ““Under this agreement, Iran is never permitted to obtain a nuclear weapon, and it imposes serious and variable constraints that will ensure this for many years.”
HR 2048 – revising the Patriot Act of 2005 by terminating bulk collection of metadata, increasing transparency of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court and requiring the use of “a specific selection term as the basis for national security letters that request information from wire or electronic communication service providers, financial institutions, or consumer reporting agencies.” Tonko voted with 141 Democrats and 196 Republicans to approve the legislation, which became law on June 2, 2015.
Tonko voted against the Farm Bill on July 11, 2013. The bill included farm policy, but did not include food stamps. Tonko signed a letter sent to Rep. Collin Peterson of Minnesota in August 2013, asking him to keep Steve King’s amendment, which would prevent states from applying their own laws on agricultural products to agricultural products from another state, out of the final Farm Bill. The bill ultimately passed without the amendment.
He has voted against all attempts to repeal implementation of the ACA
Long Island native Joe Vitollo served in the U.S. Air Force before spending 12 years running a construction company. A bad fall left the father of six unable to work and sent him back to school, where he earned a degree in nursing. Vitollo now lives in Coeymans and works as an ER nurse in Albany.
Key campaign points:
Favors deregulating, reestablishing local control of public education
Opposes charter schools
Favors abolishment of the NEA
Supports greater accountability
Simplification of the tax code/ closing tax loopholes/ ending “corporate welfare”
Tax relief for farmers
Reformation of development review processes
Would advocate for a balanced budget amendment
A+ rated with the NRA and SCOPE
Would require immigrants to learn English within four years or face deportation
Would work to protect Social Security funds; favors identification requirements for voting or participation in other government programs
Favors repeal of the Affordable Care Act
Wants to “rebuild” national defenses, resume construction of long-range missile launchers, and force renegotiation of Iran Treaty