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Gibson: I am the true conservative

Combat veteran Chris Gibson says incumbent Democratic Congressman Scott Murphy’s rhetoric does not match his voting record. Photo by Chris Gibson’s campaign website.
June 21, 2010
Among many congressional candidates present at the GOP Convention this year was Chris Gibson, a combat veteran of Iraq and Kosovo, who is running against Democratic incumbent Scott Murphy in upstate New York's 20th District.

Gibson has served four combat tours of duty in Iraq, risen to the rank of colonel in the Army and has taught American politics at West Point. In 2008, he wrote a book about national security decision-making called "Securing the State."

The main tenets of Gibson's platform are lowering taxes, eliminating some regulatory agencies, reducing federal spending and supporting the freedom to bear arms.

During the convention, Gibson answered questions about his positions on various issues and what he perceives to be his opponent's weaknesses.

"It's clear the environment we have is hostile to small businesses. All you have to do is listen to small business owners and they'll tell you that the issues they're having are taxation, regulation and onerous health care costs," he said. Gibson said the country needs to change from being hostile to businesses to supporting them and controlling government spending.

Gibson said he is confident about the success of his campaign because it is a primarily conservative district. "If you have any doubts [about the district being conservative] then look at his platform because it's essentially my platform," Gibson said of Murphy's positions.

Included in the platform Murphy has posted on his campaign website are lowering taxes, fiscal responsibility, national security and veterans' issues. It also includes the congressman's positions on education, agriculture and energy issues that do not mirror Gibson's stances.

"The point is that you've got to look at his record. He says one thing but then you look at his votes," said Gibson. Gibson pointed to Murphy's vote on the health care bill as an example of the congressman's support of the Democrats' legislative agenda. "First he was against it, then for it. The cap and trade which he co-sponsored, and he ran on the stimulus spending," said Gibson on his opponent's record in office.

When asked about his stances on same-sex marriage and abortion, Gibson only addressed the marriage issue before he cut off the interview to return to the GOP dinner he was attending.

"I'm a principled conservative. The economy and spending, that's the focus. I would say I don't support gay marriage and the reason why is that I believe the federal government really doesn't have the authority to redefine marriage," said Gibson.

Gibson's spokesman, Daniel Odescalchi, said the candidate is opposed to all forms of partial birth abortions and late-term abortions.

"He will fight to prevent the use of taxpayer dollars to fund abortions and hopes to work closely with the right-to-life community to continue efforts to limit the number of abortions being performed. He will also work to make adoption an easier, less complicated and more affordable process for both biological parents and those looking to adopt," said Odescalchi in a statement.

Gibson's view on the immigration reform debate, an issue that may soon be on the U.S. Senate's agenda, is to improve the enforcement of current laws.

"With the Constitution our founding fathers established the United States as a nation of laws. If we do not enforce our laws than who are we? At the moment our federal government is not enforcing our immigration laws and that needs to change," he said.

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