POTSDAM, N.Y. (WWTI) — Matt Castelli says his appeal to moderates in New York’s 21st Congressional District is key to his chances of beating four-term incumbent Rep. Elise Stefanik when they square off November 8.
“What we’re prioritizing this campaign is elevating the voice of a moderate to bring us together to focus on problem solving,” Castelli, said in an interview. “Common sense is right back in the middle where moderates are.”
Castelli, a former CIA agent and Director for Counterterrorism in President Obama’s National Security Council, will be on the ballot as both the Democrat and a Moderate, which emphasizes safety and security, the economy and individual liberty in its platform.
Castelli’s campaign has been making a broad appeal to moderates, saying it’s an approach to governing that’s needed to tackle the country’s problems, from reducing costs for families and seniors and protecting abortion rights to securing the nation’s borders and defending democracy.
Castelli has also advocated for more investments in education, broadband infrastructure, affordable housing and child care in the 21st Congressional District, which span 15 counties and is the the largest geographically in New York.
“Each of those different regions, whether it’s locality or if it’s a specific industry, those are the common threads that we need in our community so that everyone can thrive,” he said.
Castelli also criticized the political priorities of Stefanik, who rose to the third most powerful position in the U.S. House after fiercely defending President Donald Trump in his first impeachment.
“The folks are really tired about the extremes,” he said. “They’re tired of the division that has consumed our politics. They want a restoration of a voice for the great moderate majority.”