Saturday, September 26, 2009

We Are Family !

Is it time for candidates to refuse to accept the ACORN-like Working Families Party ? No, of course not....The Family has the cash and the people to influence races. Besides the WFP is where Rice and I go to vote for Darrel !
Affidavits: Ballot abuse rampant -- Page 1 -- Times Union - Albany NY:2837:

Palin First...Pelosi Last Among Readers

You know who stopped by today...Dave Mance....He brought a couple of Sarah Palin commemorative coins from his recent trip to Alaska....The coins feature Palin on one side and President Obama on the other. It commemorates the Inauguration of Mr. Obama and Alaska's 50th Year in the Union. Dave said there is not much Palin paraphernalia in Juneau. He says they hate her there.
The other funny thing involving the former governor was the just-for-fun poll we posted after a woman paid $63,500 in a charity auction for a dinner with the Palins....
Our poll pitted Palin against two well respected Democratic political figures, Michelle Obama and Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Also in the hunt was popular actress Megan Fox.
Ms. Fox had led all week till a Palin surge today.
I was shocked because there are a loud cadre of Palin haters who always comment here....Apparently there is a Silent Majority who feel differently.
Oh, and how is it Ms. Pelosi got but one vote....That's an ego crusher.
At least our retired teacher friend from the Cape cast his lot with her.

Polls Used to Try and Muscle DeDe Out

The "she can't win" argument is being stepped up as the Doug Hoffman campaign continues to try and convince the GOP to dump Diedre Scozzafava as their candidate in NY-23.
As I have been saying all along, that is the strategy and if unsuccessful it is still not clear Hoffman really runs a three way race that includes Democrat Bill Owens.
Since the Governor has not called the election, the parties have not officially designated their candidates. While there are anticipated nominees, they are not official designees.
The Press Republican - Article: Latest congressional poll shows tight race

Saturday AM Stuff

We are still awaiting the Governor's call of a special election. I hope with all the excitement of the President dissing him, he doesn't forget.
Republicans are bemoaning the difficulty they are having raising $$$ for the NY-23 race. They say all the usual givers were tapped out by Jim Tedisco in his unsuccessful bid earlier this year in NY-20.
Still no sign, or signs for that matter, of the City Council race.
After approving the contract they asked for on the Arena concession stand, City Hall now is told by the Hockey association they want the City to purchase new kitchen equipment.
Meanwhile the state is hinting there will be delays in state aid payments, an indication Albany is increasingly desparate.
Add St. Lawrence County Legislator Don Peck to the list of those interested in running for the 122nd Assembly seat if Diedre Scozzafava vacates the seat to move up to Congress. Attorney Dave Renzi, Montague Inn owner Rick Lucas, Jeff County Board Chair Ken Blankenbush, West Carthage Mayor Scott Burto, and District 10 Legislator Mike Behling are all being talked about for the nomination. Because it will be a special election, there is no petition or primary. I hear 5 people have been interviewed by RACC for the post.
One of the first jobs of new GOP chair Don Coon is to pull out of the fire the County Legislative race in District 11. The long-held Republican seat is now open and most observers give Democrat Paul Simmons a good chance of winning over political novice Bob Ferris.
Republicans seem buoyed in District 15 where Anthony Doldo is making an effort to unseat Democrat James St. Croix.

Friday, September 25, 2009

This Commentary Will Make Me No Friends At the WDT

It's a good heads-up photo....taking the picture at the right moment to give us a rare view of the brutality of nature...The photo of the little girl fleeing the napalm in 'Nam or the Viet Cong fellow about to be shot in the head were good photos too. Or in the case of the WDT the infamous burned-body-in-the-window photo that they don't seem to ballyhoo much.
I think the photo or the article speak for themselves, and these press awards are , well, self serving.
I got one once....For best editorial and commentary in a small market. I was the only submission, but I still went to the NYSBA dinner because Dave Mance invited me and Tim Russert was the speaker. I display the statue....But really, it doesn't mean anything......Other than if Mr. Leven asks Brosk to cut a promo about the Hotline, he can say the words "award winning" without fibbing.
But in promos you can fib.....Is the Hotline really , "America's favorite noontime talk show" ?
Watertown Daily Times Times photo wins top statewide prize from Associated Press

Baldwinsville family says teacher told fourth-grader to turn Yankee shirt inside out | News from The Post-Standard -

The classroom never should have had all the Bosox paraphernalia. The teacher should be traded to the Boston School District.
Baldwinsville family says teacher told fourth-grader to turn Yankee shirt inside out News from The Post-Standard -

Sampson Pledges Real Change....Let's Pray for his Success

The defacto leader of the Democrat led state senate has sent a letter to municipal officials pledging an unprescedented budget process to deal with next year's pending mess in Albany. Senator John Sampson is the conference leader while the actual Majority Leader, Pedro Espada, speaks for no one but himself.
Senator Sampson says the majority caucus will insist on "zero-based" budgeting and is open to any and all ideas to reform government.
Where do you start ?
A Constitutional Convention is a start. New York's Constitution, unlike the federal model, has institutionalized so much of the bloat we have now.
Now some, like many commenters on this blog, openly say more spending is not only acceptable but desirable.
Whether Mr. Sampson is sincere or merely posturing, I don't know. I do know he will have an awful lot of people to say no to if he is to start turning the SS New York away from a date with a prodigious iceberg.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Jeff Graham Campaign Contributions and Donations -- Huffington Post

No secrets anymore....The liberal elite media has blown my cover.
Jeff Graham Campaign Contributions and Donations -- Huffington Post

A Broad in Asia

Bad headline or not.....Or do you need to know the subject of the headline before you judge.
Poynter Online - Romenesko

Foreign Policy I Can Live With

"I am not talking about some U.S.-led “democracy crusade.” We cannot impose our values on other countries. Nor should we seek to."

There's a sentiment I can agree with. Too bad it was uttered by the wrong person.

NY'ers Giddy over Latest Tax and Price Hikes !

Some really good news for all New Yorkers as a judge has lifted his stay that had halted implementation of the Bigger Better Bottle Bill enacted last spring.
The MSM hasn't told you, so let me be the first to bear such great news.
Even without a fat tax on sugary drinks or an additional sin tax on alcohol, we can still enjoy the exhillaration of paying higher prices for beverages.
The handling fee goes up from 2 cents to 3.5 cents so those recycling centers engaged in the make-work nickel deposit program will make more. The extra will be passed on to consumers through higher prices for the product.
There's more. 80% of unclaimed deposits will now go to the state to help fund the ever expanding government we New Yorkers cherish. Of course that equates to an extra 19 cents a case.
Soon water bottles will be subject to all this, so you health nuts will no longer be able to cheat the system.
Of course beverage manufactures and wholesalers will get to use these tax hikes as a ruse for hikes of their own.
Small business will struggle to pass along another increased cost to consumers already reeling from the higher car registrations, hunting licenses, and just about everything else.
What really sends a tingle up my leg is Albany tells us there is more to come next year.
It's about time these rich corner store owners were forced to pony up their fair share.

Elementary School Students Reportedly Taught Songs Praising President Obama - Political News -

But Don't Let 'em Say a Prayer !
Elementary School Students Reportedly Taught Songs Praising President Obama - Political News -

Marist College poll shows 62% of NYer's felt President Obama should not have made 2010 election comment about Paterson

Our readers agree with this poll that President Obama should butt out of our state politics.
Marist College poll shows 62% of NYer's felt President Obama should not have made 2010 election comment about Paterson

Simmons, Hallett Get Reprieves

Former City Councilman and local businessman Paul Simmons has won the Independence Party nod for County Legislator in the open seat race in District 11 (Watertown-Rutland).
Mr. Simmons won a write in primary after no candidate filed petitions last July. Simmons is seeking the seat against Republican Robert Ferris, owner of Big Apple Music.
Meanwhile, a recanvass of primary results has given John Hallett the
Conservative Party nod for Jefferson County Judge. Unofficial election night results had show Judge Kim Martusewicz the apparent winner.
Judge Martusewicz also won the Independence Party primary.
May I say, my posts that night listed Martusewicz the apparent winner in the Conservative Primary. Just a reminder that unofficial results are just that and in a small voter pool a minor transcription error can flip a race.

Sightings from Your Political Observer

GOP gubernatorial candidate Rick Lazio is advocating a unicameral or one house legislature for New York as one reform he would like to see. Currently only Nebraska has such a system.
Tomorrow is the first day Governor Paterson can call a special Congressional election to occur November 3. The law says the call must be between 30 and 40 days before the actual voting.
Republican insiders say while DeDe Scozzafava leads in polls, the early media buys by Democrat Bill Owens show the Plattsburgh attorney is in it to win it. The well done spots are running in the pricey Syracuse media market in an effort to reach voters in Oswego and Madison counties.
Owens is also said to have held fundraisers in DC and Long Island, with Scozzafava expected to shake the Washington money tree in the near future.
Governor Paterson says he will finish his term, but yesterday was hinting he may indeed not run in 2010. Guess what Governor, that's already been decided for you. Andrew Cuomo will be the designee at the party convention leaving your only route a petition drive to force a primary. By then party insiders will be afraid to come near you for fear they will be out of favor with a Cuomo administration.
Add Dave Renzi's name to those being talked about for the 122nd Assembly District should Scozzafava go to DC. The two time candidate for state office is also said to be a possible 2010 challenger to Senator Aubertine.
Will local media hold televised debates for the Congressional race.? I doubt it. There will likely be no face to face confrontations before the November 3 balloting. Just a prediction. After all, none of the three have come on something as basic as the Glenn Curry show, much less the HOTLINE.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Mrs. Paterson Devastated by Presidential Call to "GET OUT !"

Governor's wife, Michelle Paterson, says President Obama should not have asked him to drop out of election

When You Think About It There are Worse People

Funny how quiet the left is when it's one of their own.
The ugly allegations of domestic violence and intimidation against Sen. Hiram Montserrate have not been proven in a court of law.
However there is an eery silence from many on the left. I mentioned the matter today to someone in the domestic violence field and the response was a sort of 'well these things happen'. The usual blog chirpers have nothing to say.
This is the party of victims.
As nettlesome as Monserette's behavior is, there seems to be the rationalizing that other's have done worse and besides, we need him for a Democratic majority in the Senate. That majority according to some is the greater good.
Ditto for Pedro Espada.
And for the record, the GOP welcomed these same two when their help was needed in the summer coup that unraveled.
I certainly don't expect the party poobah's would give up control just to stick up for victims of domestic violence. Put for those not in power but supportive of the same party, a little comment might be illuminating.

Palin emerges in Asia with speech to investors

While her chances for holding public office rival those of David Paterson, the 2008 GOP VP candidate still garners publicity.
After the requisite jokes about what country she can see from Hong Kong, the speech will be labled by the MSM as shallow, xenophobic, and cryptically racist. Even this AM, MSNBC yakker Dylan Ratigan asked , "should she be speaking for America ?"
Those who like her will continue to experience rapture and those whose hatred is visceral will continue to belch bile in a manner reminiscent of Linda Blair.
Palin emerges in Asia with speech to investors

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Playing the Pelosi Card

Off and running.....Big Television is going to make some money afterall on this race...And of course if you want to know whats going on you need to read not just the local media but also the big guns from afar. Our little race is news in the political world. As I said on the Hotline, and its by no means profound, the primary reasons most people I know will vote Scozzafava is geography and Pelosi. She is from here...Owens and Hoffman are not.....And contributing to Speaker Pelosi's flock in Congress is something to ponder.
Meanwhile DeDe Scozzafava is getting a lesson in labor.....They know where there bread is buttered in the big races. Service Employees International Union is backing Democrat Bill Owens despite Scozzafava's labor ties through her husband.
No doubt the SEIU controlled Working Families Party will follow suit.....While the WFP is under scrutiny of late, they can still deliver considerable organization and bodies to a race.
The Daily Politics - NY Daily News

WCBS:Paterson Concerned About 'Ability To Govern'

Oh my...Governor Paterson is questioning his own ability to govern. If downstate media is to be believed, New York could be in for a long 15 months if the Governor does not get it together after the butt kicking meted out by the leader of his own party.
To defy the President and run in a primary against Andrew Cuomo is a dubious venture in futility. Trying to govern as a lame duck could be useful if he plays the kind of budget hardball that is needed but so far non-existent. To do that he would need a tacit agreement on his policies from Cuomo or else the special interests will just wait him out.
Finally, he could resign now and let Lt. Gov. Ravitch finish out the term. That's a bitter pill to swallow for a member of such a respected political family as the Paterson's.
There are no pleasant options......
Paterson Concerned About 'Ability To Govern' -

Congrats Mr. Ravitch

Certainly, the Court of Appeals 4-3 decision upholding the appointment of Richard Ravitch as Lieutenant Governor means there is someone now a heartbeat away. The opinion reversed lower court rulings that held Governor Paterson's pick of the former MTA chief was not constitutional.
When it comes to political matters the state's high court is a dubious place to find the rule of law. So it is here.
There is no provision in the state constitution to fill the slot and Paterson's epiphany when reading the public officers law is scant reason to allow one man to fill such an important position with no advice and consent from voters or the Legislature.
But, Mr. Ravitch is in the office and now tie votes in the Senate can be broken. This also lessens the power of Pedro Espada, who is thought to be the successor to Paterson if there is no LTG.
Given the spanking given him by the President this week, David Paterson could even choose to leave office knowing there is a successor of his choosing.
Certainly, Mr. Ravitch would never run in 2010 so he is not threat to Andrew Cuomo, likely to be the state's next elected governor.
Given the Court of Appeals decision, the Legislature needs to establish a constitutional methodology for filling this important office.

Rick Lazio announces candidacy for governor

My former opponent in the 2000 Senate race is running for governor. Best wishes to Rick Lazio. It will be interesting to see if a decade in the wilderness has created a competitive younger candidate for the GOP. So far the polls don't look good, but everybody is entitled to a second act, so maybe Rick Lazio will catch on.
Rick Lazio announces candidacy for governor

David Paterson: The Guy Who Wouldn't Take a Hint ?

Andrew Cuomo was going to be the Dem nominee without the heavy hand of the White House. David Paterson just wouldn't come to that realization and in a party where identity politics reigns, his continued presence was problematic.He had to go and Barack Obama quickly did what state party leaders wanted done. This was not a rogue move by Mr. Obama.
All the polls, the negative press, the turmoil in Albany. Rightly or not, the Governor was going nowhere, and should have realized the party was not going to risk a debacle next year, when control of the redistricting process is on the line. Hopefully he can rally and use his remaining 15 months to address key issues, including a tough budget cycle coming up.
When you read about continued sales tax erosion, its not just a local issue. About half of what's collected is for the state and chickens will come home to roost and tough decisions will need to be made. The test of David Paterson is how he performs now that the message has been delivered.
Bam embraces Gov- and all that's missing is the knife in his hand

Monday, September 21, 2009

McHugh is officially Army secretary

It's official....we are without a Congressman....John McHugh is now Secretary of the Army. Within days the Governor will call a special election, hopefully on November 3, the regularly scheduled election day.
Watertown Daily Times McHugh is officially Army secretary

Obama: "Governor Paterson is in the House"....More like the Dog House

Our governor, whether you like him or not, was humiliated today at an Albany airport. Governor David Paterson greeted President Barack Obama.
A proud day for NY to have the President come speak to college students.
The occasion was marred by the White House' move over the weekend to show Paterson the door and force him out of next year's governor's race. Mr. Obama called Paterson a "wonderful man."
Who believed him ?
I know the argument.
David Paterson is weak in the polls. He stands in the way of Andrew Cuomo who doesn't want to be seen trying to depose New York's first black governor. A Paterson debacle next year could cost Dems in the down ballot races and if the Governorship falls to the GOP, that could affect redistricting.
And by the way, Paterson must be made to pay for dissing media and political darling Caroline Kennedy. And aides to Obama has told Paterson the President has lost confidence in his ability to fend off Rudy Giuliani.
Now we have a "dead man walking" governor for the next 15 months.
And by interfering in NY politics the President has made it OK for Dems to abandon their governor. A "political death panel" has decided the Governor's fate.
Politics is not beanbag, and nobody knows that better today than David Paterson.

Afghan War Looking Grim Unless Changes are Made

The story that is important to us is the gloomy prognosis for the US-backed NATO expedition into Afghanistan.
In a stark appraisal our commander on the ground, General Stanley McChrystal says a rethinking of policy and the approach is needed.

“Failure to gain the initiative and reverse insurgent momentum in the near term (next 12 months) — while Afghan security capacity matures — risks an outcome where defeating the insurgency is no longer possible,” General McChrystal writes.

More troops ? I don't see Congress backing that and all of this is poignant here in Watertown as there is a stready drumbeat of casualties among our neighbors at Fort Drum.
This looks like a replay of the Soviet occupation and we don't by our own admission seem to making progress towards whatever the goal is.
Somebody needs to decide what to do. Get out or get all the way in. The present path is not very productive.

Dave's ejection is Andy's election

What a difference a day makes. Its going to be a long lame duck year for David Paterson. Maybe he could use the time to propose some real reforms in a state reeling from it's own bloat and largesse. I agree with Dicker, there doesn't seem a way out for Paterson, although the pounding he took over the Senate pick I always thought was unfair.
Dave's ejection is Andy's election

Governor Paterson bucks President Obama: I'm still going to run in 2010

Governor David Paterson sounds defiant as he insists he is still in the race for 2010. However, it is quite apparent the rug pulling from the White House has left Paterson with fewer options and an approval rating so low, Andrew Cuomo would even chance a primary if the Governor does night embrace lame duck status immediately. This Daily News story explains it pretty well.
Governor Paterson bucks President Obama: I'm still going to run in 2010

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Paterson vows 2010 run, but hedges

Sounds like he gets the push when his core constituency sides with the President. David will get an assurance of a significant DC job if he goes along.
Paterson vows 2010 run, but hedges

Will Obama Deliver the Message in Person ?

President Obama comes to New York tomorrow for visits to a college in Troy, a full hour on the Letterman Show, and appearances at the United Nations.
Will he use the occasion to solidify his widely reported effort to urge Governor David Paterson to abandon hopes of seeking a full term in 2010 ? Normally during such a visit an appearance with the Governor would be in order.
All the New York City dailies reported today that the President has communicated his feelings to the Governor through a well known NYC Member of Congress.
The New York trip on the heels of this meddling in New York politics will mean whatever the President has to say will be overshadowed by his headlong assault on Governor Paterson.
Paterson is plagued by low poll numbers and considered unlikely to win a full term next year. Attorney General Andrew Cuomo is considered the prime candidate for the Dem nomination but would like New York's first black governor out of the picture to avoid a racially charged primary.
Paterson estranged himself from the President last June when he spurned the Obama choice for the vacant US Senate seat held by Hillary Clinton.
Mr. Obama, and the media, wanted Caroline Kennedy appointed, and neither have forgotten Paterson's rogue choice to appoint Kirsten Gillibrand to the seat.
This could be interesting tomorrow. Wonder if Letterman will ask him about it. ?

Principal is a 'double dipper'

Sometimes one story is a great metaphor for what goes on all the time and greatly contributes to our fiscal woes. While you hear a lot of talk about "waste, fraud and abuse", the people using such phrases have no interest in situations like the attached Post article. It's not just this principal, it's a system that allows teachers facing disciplinary action to sit in a special facility at full pay. What do you think ?
Principal is a 'double dipper'

President Now Runs NY Politics: Orders Paterson to Yield

All three NYC papers are running the story of the White House finding the biggest bus in the fleet to throw Governor David Paterson under. The Obama administration has confirmed it has sent a clear message to the Governor to step aside and let Attorney General Andrew Cuomo be the Democratic nominee for governor in 2010.
Since everyone else is race-based , I might as well say it. The only impediment to Cuomo has been the accusation of taking on the state's first black governor, especially since it was Andrew who challenged Carl McCall for the nomination in 2002.
With the nation's first black president giving the OK to dump Paterson, the race issue is gone and very likely, so is Mr. Paterson.
This kind of direct meddling in a state race is also a measure of how the President views his role and his power.