Congressmember Anthony Weiner’s bid for re-election turned out to be exactly what the people of his district wanted, as the incumbent trounced his Republican challenger, Bob Turner.
Numbers were slow coming in, but eventually the incumbent Democrat handily defeated the Republican businessman, giving Weiner his seventh term in Congressional District 9.
“This was a well-fought campaign that focused on the middle class and the people struggling to become middle class,” he said, adding that the race seemed like a microcosm of larger national issues. “The national environment was like a tsunami, followed by a nor’easter with a hurricane attached to it.”
Weiner said that this election was a referendum on whose ideas were more likely to put the district in a more prosperous position. This, he believes, means people like the job he’s done and that they would prefer to move forward rather than backward.
“Whether its Social Security, financial relief, the health care bill – I was arguing to move forward, my opponent was arguing to move back,” he said. “You cannot simply go back and deconstruct what has happened.”
Turner, an entrepreneur and businessman, called himself the alternative to politics as usual. He believed the latest economic downturn and general unhappiness among voters would be enough to propel him into office.
“Unlike the congressmember, I’m a businessman who has created companies and jobs,” said Turner, before the results came down. “I will bring a business sensibility to Washington to help create more jobs in the private sector and grow the economy.”
And even though there was such a difference of philosophy, Weiner believes that he and Turner could work together to better the district.
“After a month on the campaign trail, I’ve found that Mr. Turner is a decent and committed guy,” he said. “And I hope we can work together in the future to better the middle class.”
Weiner also said that he intends to work with all of the new Republicans in Washington who made it into office with Election Day victories. He did promise, however, not to fold under pressure or roll back any successful programs.
“I’m going to stand up and fight whenever I think I should,” he said. “I’ll try where I can to work with them if it means helping the people of the city.”