Doug Hoffman

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Doug Hoffman
Conservative Party of NY nominee for
U.S. House of Representatives from New York, 23rd District
Personal details
Born 1953 (age 63–64)
Saranac Lake, New York
Political party Republican
Conservative Party of NY
Alma mater SUNY, Plattsburgh (B.S.)
University of Connecticut (M.B.A.)
Profession C.P.A., tax and financial planning
Website Doug Hoffman for Congress
Military service
Service/branch New York National Guard
United States Army Reserve
Years of service 1970–1976
Rank Staff Sergeant

Douglas L. "Doug" Hoffman (born 1953) is an American businessman, accountant and former congressional candidate. He was the Conservative Party candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives in the 2009 special election for New York's 23rd congressional district. On November 3, 2009, he was defeated by Democratic candidate Bill Owens. Hoffman ran for the same seat in Congress in 2010, but lost the Republican primary and withdrew his candidacy. Hoffman's 2009 campaign received extensive support from the Tea Party movement[1] and gained national attention.

Personal life[edit]

Hoffman grew up in Saranac Lake, New York, the second of four children. He graduated from Saranac Lake High School, attended North Country Community College, then SUNY Canton. In 1973, he received his B.S. in accounting from SUNY Plattsburgh. Following graduation, Hoffman attended the University of Connecticut as a part-time student and earned a Master of Business Administration degree in 1976. He became a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in 1977.

During the Vietnam war, Hoffman served in the New York National Guard (1970–73) and was a staff sergeant in the United States Army Reserve (1973–76).[2][3]


Hoffman married Carol Torrance in 1973 and moved to Hartford, Connecticut. In 1977, the couple moved to Lake Placid, New York,. They have three children, Ashleah, Douglas, and Taylor, and four grandchildren. Doug and Carol reside in Saranac Lake, New York.[3][4]

Business career[edit]

Hoffman served as controller for the Lake Placid Olympic Organizing Committee for the 1980 Winter Olympics. He stated that he held costs down and that the resulting deficit ultimately created jobs and infrastructure that 30 years later were still driving area's economy.[5]

Hoffman is currently the managing partner of the Dragon Benware Crowley & Co., P.C. accounting firm, assisting small businesses and individuals with tax and other financial planning.[6] In addition, he oversees the Hoffman Family Enterprises which include the accounting firm, a firm to assist other firms with financial planning, mergers and acquisitions, a used car dealership, and a home builder.[3]


2009 U.S. Congressional campaign[edit]

With the Democratic candidate Bill Owens and Republican Dierdre Scozzafava already campaigning for the 23rd congressional district special election of 2009, on August 7, 2009, the Conservative Party of New York opted to nominate Hoffman to run on the Conservative Party ticket.

The race drew significant national attention because of Hoffman's Tea Party affiliation[7] and because of the large amount of support Hoffman received from the national conservative base,[8] despite Hoffman's status as a third-party candidate. During the campaign, Hoffman was interviewed by Glenn Beck[9] and Sean Hannity.[10] Fiscal and social conservative groups backed Hoffman's candidacy, including the Club for Growth, the Susan B. Anthony List, the National Organization for Marriage, Concerned Women for America PAC, Citizens of the Republic, the American Conservative Union, Eagle Forum, and Family Research Council PAC.[11] Many notable Republicans, including former Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin, Republican Governor Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota and former U.S. Senator Fred Thompson, endorsed Hoffman rather than the Republican candidate because they deemed Scozzafava insufficiently conservative and ideologically indistinguishable from the Democrat.[12][13] To illustrate this point, the Hoffman campaign ran television advertisements depicting Scozzafava and Owens as "two peas in a liberal pod."[14]

After an October 31 poll showed Scozzafava trailing both Hoffman and Owens by 15% and 16% respectively, with her poll numbers collapsing, Scozzafava suspended her campaign on October 31 and endorsed the Democrat Bill Owens.[15][16]

On Election Day, Bill Owens prevailed over Hoffman by a margin of 48.3% to 46%.[17]

One commentator stated that "Hoffman's third-party candidacy is striking for how much it has galvanized the Republican Party's base."[18] According to Marilyn Musgrave of Susan B. Anthony List, "Republican party leaders in Washington should take the message of the campaign and the election seriously, that the Party base should not be taken for granted."[19]

2010 U.S. Congressional campaign[edit]

Hoffman again ran for the House of Representatives in 2010, but was defeated in the Republican primary for New York's 23rd congressional district by Matt Doheny, a businessman and lawyer.[20] On September 23, 2010, Hoffman announced that he would continue his campaign for the congressional seat as the Conservative Party candidate.[21] However, on October 5, 2010, Hoffman announced that he was dropping out of the race altogether,[22] although his name remained on the ballot.[23] Bill Owens (D) won re-election by less than 4,000 votes, while Hoffman received 9,592 votes on the Conservative Party line.[24][25] Hoffman has been referred to as a "spoiler" in the 2010 race.[26]

Hoffman's campaign staff was criticized by Upstate New York Tea Party Chairman Mark Barie,[27][28][29] who contended that Hoffman's senior campaign advisor "ran this campaign from his office in Arizona, and he was clearly ignorant of what was happening on the ground here in the North Country."[29]


Although he has not ruled out running a third time for Congress, Hoffman plans to run for the Republican and Conservative nominations for the New York State Assembly to replace the retiring Teresa Sayward. Hoffman will be competing with Dan Stec, the mayor of Queensbury, for the party nominations.[30] Hoffman ultimately declined to seek the Assembly seat.

Hoffman allied with Carl Paladino, another upstate New York activist allied with the Tea Party, to endorse several primary challengers in the 2012 elections. Both of Paladino's and Hoffman's joint endorsements, Michael Kicinski (running against incumbent Congressman Richard L. Hanna) and Karen Bisso (running against incumbent Assemblywoman Janet Duprey, one of Scozzafava's biggest backers in the 2009 race) lost their primary elections; Bisso remains in her race on the Conservative Party line.

Political positions[edit]

During Hoffman's campaign for U.S. Representative, he expressed the following beliefs and positions.[31]

Hoffman supports:

Hoffman opposes:


  1. ^ "Green grass-roots at University of Nebraska". CNN. 2004-05-07. 
  2. ^ Brown, Nathan (2009-10-16). "Hoffman fears a bankrupt nation". Adirondack Daily Enterprise. Retrieved 2009-11-03. 
  3. ^ a b c "About Doug Hoffman (self-promotional website)". Committee to Elect Doug Hoffman for Congress. Retrieved 2009-11-02. 
  4. ^ "Douglas Hoffman - Biography". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved 2009-11-02. 
  5. ^ Seymour, Jude (2009-09-06). "Hoffman held purse strings for 1980 Olympics in Lake Placid". Watertown Daily Times. Retrieved 2009-11-02. 
  6. ^ "Douglas L. Hoffman, CPA, Managing Partner". Dragon Benware Crowley & Co. Retrieved 2009-11-02. 
  7. ^ Raice, Shayndi (2010-06-18). "Battle for GOP Ballot Slots". The Wall Street Journal. 
  8. ^ Conservative chorus at national conference: Aren't you Doug Hoffman? |
  9. ^ "Why Doug Hoffman is Running for Office". Fox News. 2009-10-27. 
  10. ^ RealClearPolitics – Interview with House Candidate Doug Hoffman
  11. ^ "Doug Hoffman for Congress". Doug Hoffman for Congress. Retrieved 2010-08-23. 
  12. ^ Palin: "there is no real difference between the Democrat and the Republican in this race." "Palin: Ready to shake things up in New York". Reuters. 2009-10-22. Archived from the original on 2009-10-26. Retrieved 2009-10-28. 
  13. ^ Hook, Janet (2009-11-03). "Conservatives emboldened by moves in New York". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2009-11-03. 
  14. ^ Trussell, Donna. "Down the Stretch: Three-Way Race Heats Up in New York Special Election". Retrieved 2010-08-23. 
  15. ^ Seymour, Jude (October 31, 2009). "Scozzafava suspends campaign". Watertown Daily Times. Retrieved October 31, 2009. 
  16. ^ Madore, James T. (2009-10-31). "Under pressure, GOP assemblywoman suspends campaign". Newsday. Retrieved 2009-11-01. 
  17. ^ "Special election results certified". Watertown Daily Times. Retrieved 2010-08-23. 
  18. ^ Republicans work to defeat one of their own – National – Archived October 29, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  19. ^ Musgrave to GOP: ‘Don’t just assume we’re yours’ | The Colorado Independent
  20. ^ Hoffman Loses To Doheny In Primary
  21. ^ Hoffman Staying In NY-23 On Row D Archived September 27, 2010, at the Wayback Machine.
  22. ^ Watertown Daily Times | Hoffman denies acting as 'spoiler'
  23. ^ Owens, Hoffman work together on Patriot Hills – | News, Sports, Jobs, Saranac Lake region — Adirondack Daily Enterprise
  24. ^ "House Results Map". The New York Times. 
  25. ^ Hoffman out of Congress race Archived October 8, 2010, at the Wayback Machine., Nathan Brown, Adirondack Daily Enterprise, October 5, 2010
  26. ^ Owens retains his 23rd Congressional seat by a comfortable margin; Hoffman spoiler for GOP | NorthCountryNow
  27. ^ Wednesday: Hoffman Campaign Blasted By Tea Party Leader | WWNY TV 7 – News, Weather and Sports for | Watertown, NY | Local News
  28. ^ Watertown Daily Times | UNYTEA leader: Hoffman campaign 'unorganized, lacked focus'
  29. ^ a b Tea party leader blasts Hoffman campaign management – | News, Sports, Jobs, Saranac Lake region — Adirondack Daily Enterprise
  30. ^ Thompson, Maury (March 14, 2012). Former Glens Falls mayor officially enters Assembly race. Glens Falls Post-Star. Retrieved March 14, 2012.
  31. ^ a b c d e "Scorecard" (PDF). Doug Hoffman for Congress. Retrieved 2009-11-03. 
  32. ^ a b "Doug Hoffman on the Issues". Doug Hoffman for Congress. Retrieved 2009-11-03. 

External links[edit]