The Jefferson County Fair opens this week and venerable as it is , the Fair cannot match the freak show coming right after it when the political circus comes to town in the form of multi-million dollar campaigns for the two people vying to succeed Rep, John McHugh.
We all got a taste in the February 2008 special election for state senate that put Darrel Aubertine in the position to springboard to the Congress.
It was big, nasty, pervasive and showed sleepy North Country pols what big time politics is all about.
As BTO said, "You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet."
Oh, I am sorry, BTO is Bachman Turner Overdrive, a popular 1970s band.
Within two weeks Aubertine will likely announce and in a closed door, back room forum similar to papal selection the GOP College of Cardinals will pick between Assem. Diedre Scozzafava and investment banker and lawyer Mathew Doheny.
Scozzafava relies on her status as a sitting member of official Albany and her considerable personal popularity in Greater Gouverneur.
Doheny runs a frenetic campaign visiting eleven counties, checking in with the political cognoscenti (did I spell that right, Ted Ford uses that phrase and I like it). Doheny has a web sight, a charming campaign staff and is engaged in fund raising, the mother's milk, as they say, of politics. He is a young man in a hurry, although at 38 is well above the Constitutional age requirement.
Scozzafava offers personal appeal and a long record in local and state government. She is burdened with sharing with Aubertine the honor of serving in the most clownish of state capitals. She likely will not get the Conservative Party nod, but I am not sure Doheny does either as I think the fix is in on the minor party lines. And opposition is already planning ways to use a family financial dilemma against her.
Doheny is a talker and genuinely does seem to understand the complexities of policy, whether or not that matters in Washington, I don't know.
What will be circus-like....and I am told both parties have advance people here already....is the scope of the campaign that will bring national attention as the pre-2010 showdown for momentum in the race to control the Congress.
For Dems a win in this long GOP district is a political stake-in-the-heart for the Party of Lincoln. For the GOP it's a chance to show resilience and relevance.
When the race begins in earnest, hang on to your hat because for intensity this could way surpass the Aubertine-Barclay food fight or the Aubertine-Renzi battle.
Now that I know such affairs are best enjoyed from a safe distance, I am looking forward to the spectacle.