Former Republican Congressman Richard Hanna crossed party lines and endorsed Democrat Anthony Brindisi Wednesday night.

The event took place at the Opera House in Earlville.

Four years ago, Hanna and current Congresswoman Claudia Tenney endured a bitter primary race of their own. Now Brindisi and Tenney are embroiled in a tight race for the 22nd Congressional District seat — with a lot of mudslinging.

Hanna says the focus in Washington right now isn't centered where it should be.

"We need two healthy parties; we need thoughtful debate based on facts and the future. We don't have that, we have ideologues who pretend to be leaders but they are not leading us anywhere but to their own full employment,” Hanna said.

Hanna served for six years in the House of Representatives.

Brindisi and Tenney squared off during a candidate forum in Rome earlier in the day Wednesday.

The two talked about creating jobs, immigration and energy costs. Like any other debate, both took jabs at one another's record, but they also covered the hot topics.

"They covered a lot of good things. They covered jobs, they covered taxes. I think those were the two big things that they seemed to focus on. They covered immigration. But I think the jobs and taxes were the two big items and they covered them pretty well,” said Robert Ritz, a Clinton resident.

Tenney and Brindisi will face off in a televised debate at Colgate University, moderated by Capital Tonight's Liz Benjamin on Thursday, October 25 at 7 p.m., on Spectrum News.