UNYTEA (Upstate New York Tea) Party chairman, Mark L. Barie, publicly announced on Wednesday their support for the candidacy of Doug Hoffman for the 23rd Congressional seat currently held by Democrat Bill Owens. UNYTEA intends to put their members to work on the Hoffman campaign for the Republican nomination to be decided this fall..
Barie also announced that his organization, now with over 650 members, will formally register with the Federal Election Commission as a Political Action Committee, unconnected to any one party.
Hoffman, running on the Conservative party line, was narrowly defeated by Owens last November to fill the seat vacated by Republican John McHugh. McHugh vacated the post to join the Obama administration as Secretary of the Army. The special election received national attention as the two main parties drew battles throwing their weight behind the their candidates. In the contentious battle Republican candidate Dede Scazzafava, drop out of the race in the final hours throwing her support behind Owens. Hoffman came up 3,000 votes shy of victory carrying 46% of the vote while Owens took 48% and Scazzafava garnered 6%.
In accepting the endorsement, Hoffman noted he had learned much from last year's election and was prepared to pick where he had left off. As a businessman, he understands what needs to be done in Washington and assured those in attendance he would not be swayed by Washington politics nor party concerns.
"UNYTEA exemplifies what's right about our country. As a Main Street Candidate I will represent the people's interest in Washington," stated Hoffman.
When questioned regarding the head start and endorsements received by primary candidate Matt Doheny, Hoffman responded that his support is strong with the party base and not with the party hierarchy. He declined to comment on any plans to run as a third party candidate should his bid for the Republican nomination fall short.
Hoffman noted that he is developing a position paper that will appear on his website in the near future at DougHoffmanforCongress.com