TOMPKINS COUNTY, N.Y.—Tompkins County Legislator Mike Sigler, a Republican representing Lansing, has confirmed his candidacy for the Republican nomination for New York’s newly drawn 22nd Congressional seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Sigler’s candidacy has been rumored for a few weeks after a Facebook page touting the campaign first popped up in early February, but with enough support to bolster his campaign Sigler announced it officially on Feb. 24. He becomes the second candidate from Tompkins County, joining Vanessa Fajans-Turner of Ithaca who announced earlier this week, along with several candidates from Onondaga County who are also running. The primary will take place in June.

“It will be an uphill battle in this new Democratic-leaning district, but that’s something we know a lot about in Tompkins,” Sigler said. “Even though my district voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016 by over 40 points, I won that same district by six against a well-funded and hard-working opponent.”

Sigler has been a Tompkins County Legislator for 12 years total, serving as interim chair briefly in 2020, who has been a steadfast though moderate Republican voice during his time on the heavily Democratic legislature. According to his campaign announcement, he also works for Park Outdoor Advertising, a job that has helped him traverse the district during his time there.

“I know every town, every village,” Sigler said in his announcement. “We will be there for the voters of the new district. We will meet the challenges they are facing with inflation, public safety, and a return to normalcy after Covid-19. It pains me to see my daughters continue to have to mask at school despite two years of evidence schools are not significant in terms of transmission.”

Sigler’s announcement included endorsements from the following figures: New York Republican gubernatorial candidate Lee Zeldin, State Senators Pam Helming and Peter Oberacker, former State Assemblymember Gary Finch, Village of Cayuga Mayor Bill Sherman, former Cayuga County Chairs Cheryl Heary and Roberta Massarini, Seneca County Chair Tom Fox and four area business owners: John Gotis of Kostas, Chris Riester of Harry’s Tire, Dave Lebrun of Lebrun Nissan and Michelle Turek of Turek Farms.

“He’s been working for us for decades, both for Tompkins County and in the Republican Party,” said Fox, quoted in the announcement. “There’s no one better to represent us in Congress. He’s been in hundreds of businesses across the district, and he has always put everything he’s had into getting our candidates elected. That’s why so many of them are supporting him. They know he’s been there for them.”

Sigler pointed to the pullout of troops in Afghanistan and the impact of inflation as missteps in President Joe Biden’s tenure so far, also noting the “misguided defund the police campaign” in Tompkins County. Sigler said that electing him to Congress would be a step towards holding Biden accountable and stopping his progress.

“We can turn this ship around,” Sigler said. “This administration has a set a course and is refusing to turn despite seeing the iceberg. It’s time for Congress to step in and the only way that will happen is to get good people in there to shift the direction that President Biden is taking us in. From crime, to the economy, to foreign policy, this administration has been wrong on the issues that matter most to my neighbors in the 22nd district.”

Matt Butler

Matt Butler is the Managing Editor at the Ithaca Voice. He can be reached by email at mbutler@ithacavoice.com