Outreach Project: New york 22
Representative Brandon Williams (NY-22), a Navy veteran, became a tech entrepreneur in Silicon Valley and Seattle before settling in New York, where he owns a truffle farm. He represents portions of eight counties and focused his campaign on inflation, crime and what he considers infringement of personal rights, citing COVID mask and vaccine mandates. A proponent of vouchers that use public money for private schools, Williams now serves on two House Education subcommittees. He is also on the Transportation & Infrastructure subcommittee. In a Jan. 20, 2023 WUTQ radio interview, he said, “No one has ever won by playing chicken with the debt ceiling.” He vows to never vote to slash Social Security or Medicare. In March, he joined the Problem Solvers Caucus, despite voicing doubts about the success of bipartisanship during his campaign.
House website: https://brandonwilliams.house.gov/
The Galleries of Syracuse
440 South Warren Street
Syracuse, NY 13202
421 Broad Street
Utica, NY 13501
Phone: (315) 233-4333
Washington, D.C. office:
Phone: (202) 225-3701
On the Record:
“I have not voted, nor will I vote, to slash Social Security or Medicare. We made a promise to our seniors and I intend on fighting to make sure we keep that promise.” — Feb. 26, 2023 Facebook post
“No one has ever won by playing chicken with the debt ceiling. . . .When it comes to the debt ceiling the real hostages are people who depend on payments from the government, and those are businesses, and different benefits programs and so it has a bigger scale…” — Jan. 20, 2023 WUTQ “Talk of the Town” radio interview
Suggested Talking Points
- I urge you to be bipartisan. Bipartisanship fosters unity and promotes the greater good. When lawmakers work together to pass legislation, it benefits all constituents, strengthening all communities. It also provides better transparency and accountability and leads to actual debate instead of pure politicking.
- Your leadership is needed to help heal the divisiveness that is crippling our nation’s progress. Constituents look for reassurance that our needs are known, understood and addressed.
- How might you as my representative demonstrate that you are aware of our district’s pressing needs? (Write about a specific issue/need that touches you personally, or your family, friends, community.)
- The debt ceiling issue requires collaboration, not finger-pointing and blaming, because defaulting on our debt cannot be an acceptable option. As I understand it, this debt is for money already spent or appropriated. The time to sort out additional funding is after the debt ceiling is raised.
- Your constituents are ordinary, working or retired Americans who rely on various government programs, including Medicare and Social Security. When we hear those programs, and payroll for government/military employees, are in danger of financial chaos, we can’t properly plan for even daily needs. Your job is to serve us, not endanger our very livelihoods.
Why are we asking you to write personal letters?
It would be easier if The Union provided a template or form letter and simply had you sign it. But it would be a lot less effective.
A personal letter is better than a form letter for writing to members of Congress because it shows that you have taken the time to share your concerns in your own words. Your personal letter is authentic and comes across as more genuine than a form letter. Members of Congress get letters drafted by advocacy groups and special interest groups on a daily basis. They spot them easily. That is why letters that are produced for supporters to sign and mail are usually dismissed.
In stark contrast, your personal letter conveys your unique perspective on how an issue affects you and your community. A personal letter includes anecdotes or specific examples that make your views more compelling and relatable to the reader.
Members of Congress get large volumes of form letters. That makes your personal letter stand out in a way that earns more attention and gets it taken seriously. Your letter creates a personal connection between you and the reader. That personal connection begins a relationship with the Congressional member that can influence his or her decision-making over time.
Writing a personal letter takes more time, but the return on your time is well worth the investment.
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Your personal stories and advocacy for good governance are what drive change. Contact your representative, share your concerns, and urge them to prioritize the needs of their constituents over partisan politics. By working together, we can hold our elected officials accountable and create a better future for all.