Former gubernatorial candidate speaks at club

Most people may recognize the name John Faso as the Republican candidate who ran against Gov. Eliot Spitzer in 2006. But Faso, an attorney who earned his law degree 30 years ago from Georgetown University, has a political history that dates back more than two decades.

In 1986, Faso was elected in the New York State Assembly and served as minority leader from 1998 to 2002. He later became a United States House of Representatives staff member on the Intergovernmental Relations subcommittee and worked on funding formulae for programs such as General Revenue Sharing and the Countercyclical Assistance Act.

From 1983 to 1986, Faso served as commissioner of New York's Legislative Bill Drafting Commission, which is charged with the drafting and technical review of bills and resolutions introduced into the state legislature.

Then Governor-elect George Pataki asked Faso to chair his budget transition team in 1994. In that capacity, Faso supervised the staff of the state division of the budget, which developed the first reduction in state spending in more than 50 years, closing a $5 billion deficit.

In 2002, Faso ran against Democrat Alan G. Hevesi for state comptroller, an election Faso lost by a narrow margin.

On June 11, the Liberty Club of the Town of Manlius, a reinstated and newly named (formerly known as the Century Club) Republican association, invited Faso to be guest speaker. The club, which is affiliated with the Town Republican Committee, was created as a tool to reach out to Republicans from the public at large.

Minoa Village Trustee Ed Theobald said the club, which offers an annual membership open to anyone interested in joining, plans to hold four events each year with prominent Republicans such as Faso scheduled to speak.

Eagle Bulletin Editor Tami S. Zimmerman interviewed Faso prior to the event, with questions on his political views about budget and healthcare issues. Here's what he had to say:

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