Republican candidate Brandon Williams clinched his central New York congressional seat, defeating Democrat Francis Conole.
The election, which leaned toward the GOP in a year of key Republican victories in New York, decided the replacement for retiring Republican Rep. John Katko.
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Fox News Power Rankings had the 22nd Congressional District as a “lean Republican” race leading up to the election. Williams declared victory last week as incoming voter data showed him consistently ahead of Canole, and The Associated Press called the race late Monday.
Williams entered the race as a first-time candidate, leaning on his experience in the U.S. Navy and his history as a tech entrepreneur before moving to the area several years ago. He co-founded the software outfit CPLANE.aim — a company dedicated to automating cloud computing for large-scale industries.
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Williams positioned himself as more closely aligned with former President Trump and his policies than Katko. Williams earned the support of Steve Bannon, who dubbed his effort an “underfunded, bootstrap, MAGA campaign.”
Conversely, the retiring Katko faced backlash from many in the GOP after voting last January to impeach Trump for inciting the deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol by right wing extremists and other supporters of the then president who aimed to upend congressional certification of now President Biden’s Electoral College victory.
New York state proved crucial for House Republicans as the party flipped two Democratic seats northwest of New York City and swept the entirety of Long Island.