SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- While the other two candidates in the race for the 24th Congressional District were taking part in a debate Tuesday afternoon, Dan Maffei held his own news conference to call on the incumbent to take a stance on hydrofracking.
Maffei says he disagrees with Buerkle's assessment that fracking is a state issue, not a federal one. He says when he was in Congress, he co-sponsored a law known as the FRAC Act, that would put hydrofracking under the Safe Drinking Water Amendment of the Clean Water Act.
"Our watershed and our clean water, they know no state boundaries. They don't just stop because we're going from Pennsylvania to New York or New York to New England. The federal government cannot turn a blind eye to something that so closely affects the health of our children," said Maffei.
"Fracking is a state issue," said Congresswoman Buerkle. "We've taken our lead from the governor. The governor right now is delaying and hasn't gone forward with it. The issue for Upstate New York is jobs and the economy and if Dan Maffei would recognize that and understand that that's what people are concerned with, we'd all be better suited."
Green Party Candidate Ursula Rozum says she supports a federal ban on hydrofracking. She says the FRAC Act is not enough to protect the environment from the environmental dangers fracking could pose.