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NY-26: Five Questions With Chris Lee

by on October 31, 2008

The Buffalo Bean recently had the opportunity to interview Chris Lee, candidate for U.S. Congress in New York’s 26th district. The interview was conducted via email and is posted below:

THE BUFFALO BEAN: You have been the target of some false negative ads put out by the DCCC on behalf of Alice Kryzan. As a newcomer to politics, were you surprised by the tone taken by your opponent and the groups trying to put her in office?

CHRIS LEE: It is unfortunate that Alice Kryzan has run a negative smear campaign against my family and our business. It does not surprise me that she has nothing positive to say about her background or her vision for Western New York.

Unlike my opponent my campaign has focused on the issues. Alice Kryzan has been on record for wanting to raise taxes which would harm our economy and destroy jobs in Western New York.

TBB: A new poll by SurveyUSA has you with a significant lead over your opponent. With the outlook for Republicans nationwide considered bleak even in Republican-leaning districts, why do you think you’re running so strong?

CJL: I don’t take a lot of stock in polls. The only poll I care about is the one on Election Day.  Voters are interested in electing someone who brings solutions and experience.

TBB: According to that same poll, there are still 18% who are undecided. What would you tell those voters to convince them they should support you?

CJL: In these troubling economic times we need a leader in Congress that has the real world experience of creating jobs in Western New York, balancing a budget and meeting a payroll.  Western New Yorkers deserve an independent voice in Washington who won’t accept business as usual.  A leader who will fight to keep taxes low, not raise them – who will fight for affordable health care, not government run health care. We have enough attorneys in Washington it is time to send a businessman to Congress.

TBB: What part of your message has resonated the most with the voters you’ve talked with on the campaign trail?

CJL: People like the fact that I have created jobs in Western New York. I have spent my career growing a family business that helped Western New York’s economy. Out of the 535 members of Congress, 237 members hold a law degree and only 18 members hold an MBA degree. Western New Yorkers understand that we don’t need another lawyer in Congress we need a businessman.

TBB: How do feel your experience as a successful businessman makes you better suited to represent the 26th district than your opponent?

CJL: I am a businessman, not a career politician. I bring real world experience to the job.  I’ve helped build a business and create jobs in Western New York.  I’ve been fortunate enough to sign the front of paychecks as well as the back. I know the challenges job-creating businesses face — and in Congress, I will work to make sure it is easier for them to grow in our communities.  When you are meeting a payroll you understand how difficult it is to earn a dollar. Therefore you are also a better steward of taxpayer’s hard earned tax dollars.


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