Saturday, January 23, 2010

NEWS 10: Radical Left Goes After Tea Partier Erik Dunk

A Camden New York community organizer has complained to Harley Davidson about the electronic scrolling sign in front of Iron Block Harley Davidson in Adams Center. This time its because owner Erik Dunk posted a message critical of the proposed health care plan. Dunk says the health bill is unconstitutional and the complaint just another effort to stifle his free speech....A complaint last summer led to a rebuke from Harley headquarters.
Dunk is active in the Tea Party movement.
Another complaint against Harley Davidson sign off 1-81 in Adams Center -

Serious Dialogue....Not Name Calling Needed on Abatement Issues

The sudden rush of concern about tax abatements needs to be addressed and the best way to do that is to take a step away from the particular project of the moment and begin a dialogue on the means used in the quest for economic development.
All of us want jobs and business and all of us realize NY State is a downright hostile atmosphere for doing buisness.
The method for dealing with that in recent years is the idea of "targeted" tax cuts and exemptions for some, since we cannot afford to lower taxes for all.
Governments also started programs to recruit industries and help them with financing and finding a location. Hence industrial revenue bonds and revolving loan funds.
Local governments can be helpful as the City has done with a decision to rehab water and sewer service in the Stateway Plaza neighborhood to allow more development.
Programs like the Empire Zone were useful but gradually rules were changed and stretched to the point entities were doing corporate shirt changes just to get out of paying taxes and the program is now headed for extinction.
Meanwhile the public has been conditioned by political discourse to believe that politicians can "create" jobs so we spend more and more on schemes to induce and subsidize business activity.
Current methods include one-day property transfers just to avoid a mortgage tax and similar deals to avoid sales tax on construction materials.
All of that sounds nice, but just like federal stimulus packages there is a cost.
The taxes being abated are the lifeblood of local governments. The people who bring you police, firemen, roads and snow plows.
In fact, most local towns, villages and the city derive far more of their revenue from their share of sales tax than from the property tax.
In Jefferson County an agreement inked in 2004 gives 29% of the local share of sales tax to the towns and villages while the city receives 24%. The other 47% goes to county government.
Abating those taxes takes away the growth in sales tax revenue that is needed to keep property taxes down. In the current recession we are seeing pressure to either cut staff or raise property taxes in the wake of flagging sales tax dollars.
When sales tax money is diverted to developers and the IDA, its the elected officials in local government who have to make the decisions to cut people or raise taxes. The people doing the abating are not the ones who have to live with the result.
Further there is the question of equity. If a tax code is to be fair it must be equally applied. When routine commercial investment or routine refinancing leads to wholesale exemptions from the taxes most folks pay.....well there is resentment.
There is also the matter of mission creep. We now see public subsidy of just about any type business including restaurants and hotels where the decision to locate and build is market driven.
This is not just the case of a "vocal minority". This subject needs to be discussed before the next high powered law firm comes along with a massive tax dodge that leaves local residents unable to share in the growth and leaves local government stretched in providing services. (For instance, when someone in the 23 new homes on Galloo Island needs police or ambulance service, who will buy the boats.)
I have tried to be non-confrontational in this piece. However, one must understand there are some of us who believe current county policies are not the best policies. Granted, we should have spoke out at public hearings, but we are all pretty busy. So some of us are speaking out now.
When Archie Bunker wanted Edith to pipe down, he would say "stifle yourself."
My advice to Mr. Gray and others in the "minority" is don't stifle yourself.

Single Lawmaker on the Bubble

Talk about pressure......
Looks like the deciding vote on the wind PILOT is District 6 Legislator Gino Zando and the lobbying is heavy on both sides.
Municipal leaders from the Towns of Wilna and Champion are urging a no vote as the exemption on sales tax affects those towns as it does all municipalities in the County. And its not just this one PILOT....Such exemptions are routinely granted for a variety of projects including the construction of a hotel in Black River.
Big Wind and the JCIDA are lobbying Mr. Zando to vote yes and the feeling was he would do so, creating a 7-7 split on the board. Then the plan was board chairman Blankenbush would cast the eighth vote in favor.
Currently six lawmakers are on record in favor of the PILOT and seven are against. There is not thought to be any way of swaying any of those votes.
The matter in question is not so much the property tax exemptions, but the use of the JCIDA to take title to property for the purpose of obviating the mortgage tax and the sales tax on building materials.
In non PILOT deals, these other exemptions are offered and the IDA collects a fee equal to 25% of the tax savings. In esssence, the exemptions redirect money from elected boards to the developer and the IDA.
This has become a routine practice and at a time when sales tax revenues have become sluggish....and most local governments depend on this tax more than the property tax.....opposition to such arrangements is growing.
One local official was told not to lobby county lawmakers. This will get ugly, he was told, and you don't want to be a part of it.
High drama for sure. I wouldn't want to be Gino for all the wind in Hounsfield.

WDT: Wind Foes (Aka Scott Gray) Assailed by County

Who is the vocal minority being referred to by the head of the JCIDA ? If you read this WDT story there is a statement from the agency charging a vocal minority is stirring up trouble for their own narrow interests. If that is a slam at Scott Gray, its libelous since the florist stands to gain nothing and is merely trying to assert the arrangements for this deal shortchange county residents and in particular municipalities who will see their largest revenue streams diminished, in favor of a diversion of tax dollars to the IDA and the developer of the Galloo Island wind farm.
The WDT story also reveals the IDA spent over $200,000 on consultants and lawyers to draft the proposed PILOT.
The suggestion that Gray and other opponents are creating a "ruse" is an interesting choice of words. There is a debate over the tactics used in the name of economic development and maybe its time to get an outside look at the whole matter as the local participants are too much at odds with one another to think clearly.
In any event, I can tell you that Mr. Gray is right on this one and to suggest he is benefiting from the controversy is laughable. Gray is a businessman and generally folks like that avoid politics so as not to alienate floral customers.
What's going on is wrong and its bad public policy. And that's no ruse.
Watertown Daily Times | Talk of shorter PILOT ignites flap

Friday, January 22, 2010

Big Wind's Mouthpiece Unmasked

The point man for Big Wind and the man trying to bring errant lawmakers into the barn is a Cornell and St. John Fisher grad named Robert Bergdorf. He is the sole face for Big Wind and the only point of contact for bureaucrats, media and lowly lawmakers in the current dispute. He looks young and photogenic and is listed as a general partner in the firm of Nixon Peabody.
Robert W. Burgdorf :: Real Estate & Community Development :: Rochester :: Nixon Peabody LLP

Huck in the lead - Ben Smith -

One little Senate race for the GOP and there is blood in the water for the 2012 Presidential race. Speculation has started about a Michael Bloomberg vs Obama race....That might actually be reason to vote for the President. And there is a poll out showing Huckabee and Romney even or ahead of the President. It's way early, but I think the worse the Dems do in mid-terms this fall, the better position Mr. Obama is in for 2012.
A bloodbath for his party gives the President a chance to remake himself and deal with new masters in Congress. That won't make the Progressives (aka Marxists) happy, but it could save Mr. Obama in 2012.....Suddenly the Age of Hope is over and a man as shrewd as the President ignores that at his own peril.
Huck in the lead - Ben Smith -

Say it With Flowers !

I was talking to the florist today. He says he got a Fed Ex from the lawyer from Big Wind demanding clarification of remarks the florist made concerning PILOTS.
Quake in your boots Mr. Gray.....The Gods of Wind are angry at your refusal to make a suitable offering at their altar.
Scott, instead of sending him a clarification....Send him some flowers !

Ford: I continue to learn about New York -

He didn't know the size of the state budget.....The list of gotcha questions that could be posed to Harold Brown Jr is endless. Ford is new to New York and we could ask him how many counties there are ? Name the last five Governors....How deep is the Great Sacandaga Lake ? What is the highest point in the state ? and just what is the state bird ?
Ford: I continue to learn about New York -

Political Trail Mix

-Insiders say the prospects for a Patti Ritchie State Senate bid are still strong and party big wigs have been in the area of late to stroke her. Wonder if she can win in spite of their advice ?
-Party change or not, I think Arlen Spector won't make it past the Democratic primary in Pennsylvania this year.....The long time senator snarled "act like a lady" to a female member of Congress this week during an on air debate on health care...Don't care if the lady was Rep, Michelle Bachmann (R-MN), who is the second most reviled woman among Democrats. Spector finished off a flagging reelection bid and will lose the primary to Rep. Joe Sestak.
-Governor Paterson won't back down....He is insisting on making Andrew Cuomo beat him and so far the son of a former governor is still on the sidelines.
-Look for action to start soon in the GOP race for NY23 and the question is will Doug Hoffman be blessed with two opponents from the western end of the district ? And what about the Conservatives....if they go with Hoffman, the Lake Placid CPA could still lose a GOP primary thus replicating the kind of three way that Bill Owens loves.
I think Hoffman is still an outsider with party leaders who still carry some clout in a primary, even though we found out last year they cannot dictate much of anything.
-More dirt on John Edwards....A new book coming out and it's alleged an elderly rich widow financed over a million dollars in payoffs to Edward's mistress to keep the affair covered up....This is going to be a tawdry tell-all.
-Call me naive or just a hardcore, but I see lightning striking twice with the NY Jets beating the Colts (then Baltimore, now Indianapolis)......The score 27-20.......What's your prediction Drew ?

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Harold's Upstate Adventure

Dainty Harold Ford Jr of Tennessee.....He was acquainted to New York State when his dad bought a home in the tony Hamptons of Long Island.....He moved to NY and lived in Manhattan while visiting the best restaurants and riding to work in limos.
Now Harold Ford Jr. is on a listening tour of NY State in advance of an expected run against Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. Gilly was at home upstate in Columbia County, where she used to sleep with a gun under her bed.
Gilly got roughed up by the NYC liberals and isn't quite the upstater she used to be.
As for Harold, he wants to meet upstate.
This week he went to Rockland County....a well-to-do county just barely north of the City that never sleeps.
As Mao said, the longest march starts with one step and the stepford wives suburbia of Rockland was likely a big step for him.
Spacious country homes and dressed down former Manhattanites is not the down and dirty trailer-park-strewn upstate that folks like Harold or Ed Koch have trouble with.
Harold, buy a pickup truck and start driving north. Skip the handlers and just stop by towns like ours....
The old carpet towns like Amsterdam.....the former photo capital of the world, industrial Buffalo....check out wine country....the windmills of a cow....see the blue-lined poverty of the Adirondacks and the upscale life in Saratoga.
Visit Albany and see America's most dysfunctional legislature, but dont miss the building with RCA's Nipper perched on top.....
Most of all Harold, see person and not from a black limo traveling only within sight of the Thruway......
See you at Mo's diner Sunday morning.

WDT: Owens Taps Half Dozen Staffers

While NNY Republicans gaze at their navels, incumbent Congressman Bill Owens continues to grow roots in the district with the appointment of six staffers, including one who used to work for Rep. John McHugh. Owens is still not that well known to many, but will spend 2010 building a following for this fall's reelection.
The mastermind of Owen's 2009 win, June O'Neill, told me today she is confident Owens can beat any of the three likely GOP challengers.
Watertown Daily Times | Local News, Sports, Features, and Community Information for Jefferson County, St. Lawrence County, and Lewis County in Northern New York

Scott Brown’s remark about daughters raises eyebrows - The Boston Globe

Yes, Seantor-elect Brown's joking reference to his daughters was a little awkward, but anyone who thought he was "pimping" them is one sandwich short of a picnic. Some Democrats and even conservative talk show host Glenn Beck have made such remarks. I like Beck's show, but on this one he is an idiot.
Scott Brown’s remark about daughters raises eyebrows - The Boston Globe

WDT: JCIDA won't change PILOT

One assumes they have the votes or this wouldn't come up again.
This project has focused attention on the practices used in these PILOT arrangements. Much of it is not new, but the sheer dollar volume of this deal and ones like it to come has attracted attention.
For me, the issue of sales and mortgage tax abatement was brought to my attention by the city manager, whose job it is to be concerned about finance issues. A story last fall about sales tax abatement that was proposed so a local hotel could remodel rooms also brought the matter into focus.
Then I got to talking with other public officials, including Mayor Burto of West Carthage, who quietly shared dislike for the tactics used by the JCIDA and its effect on the funding streams for local municipalities.
Because nobody likes to make tough decisions, far too much of the ability to alter revenue streams for local government has been given to bodies with no accountability to voters....Yes, voters. This is a representitive republic and the bond between government and those governed can only occur when elected officials make decisions.
It will be said if the county legislature does not approve this wind deal, the developer would go away. That begs the question....would they really ?
The fact is every municipality in this county is being asked to pony up for Big Wind and they will be ask to do so again and again as these PILOTS are routinely granted in the future. It will continue to be done in private and those requesting the handout will never have to suffer the indignity of asking the public directly.
Watertown Daily Times | JCIDA won't change PILOT

GOP leaders taking time on choice for 23rd District Congressional seat | News from The Post-Standard -

Looks like GOP county chairs are not likely to embrace Doug Hoffman, but they didn't last year either. I am not sure in a sprawling eleven county district you will ever get a consensus that means anything when it comes to decision time.
One advantage that candidates Barclay and Doheny have is they come from somewhere in the district. Barclay would have a big primary edge in Oswego County and Doheny in Jefferson County.
Still, as I write this, none of the three have said for sure they are running. I think the candidate that stops equivocating will gain the edge. People want to see that you want the prize and you don't show that by dipping your toe in the water for months on end.
GOP leaders taking time on choice for 23rd District Congressional seat | News from The Post-Standard -

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

18-yr-old Republican Announces Candidacy

God bless him for getting involved so young...He'll learn when the pros get his petitions tossed....
18-yr-old Republican Announces Candidacy

NYDN: Schumer Dialing Back

Senator Chuck Schumer may be hearing the blowback from Democratic hyperventilation over the health care bill. The public....even in mad and the Senators negative poll numbers have climbed into the 40s for the first time ever. Even though the GOP can't find an opponent for Schumer, just the prospect he may not be universally popular has to be killing him.
Calling sensible people like Senator Elect Scott Brown a "teabagger" is not the path to popularity among those living outside Manahattan.
Mouth Of The Potomac - NY Daily News

They Say I am Doing What ?

Speaking of Ken Lovett, the Daily News scribe called me today and ask if I was running for US Senator against Chuck Schumer. I was a little befuddled sounding as I don't recall saying I was.
I did write a blog critical of the Senator's use of the word "teabagger" to describe candidate Scott Brown who is now Senator-elect from Massachusetts. I found it an insulting affront to many of us independent types who had actually voted for Schumer in his break-through run in 1998.
I did suggest to a couple of GOP operatives who were visiting Fort Pearl that somebody should take that message to him, as it looks like the Republicans are without a candidate in either Senate race this year. They suggested I run and that the GOP would go along.
Well having done that before in 2000, I don't need to be in that briar patch, but it was nice of them to think of me.....I told that to Ken, who is one of the better political reporters I have met.
I wouldn't even call it a trial balloon....just a momentary burst of hot air.

Whats Up NY-23?: Doug Hoffman Smokes NY-23 & Leaves Competition in the Dust

Is Whats UpNY23 a house organ for the Hoffman campaign ?....Seems like it in this post ? The clear effort to cast Doheny and Barclay as pro choice (aka Dede clones) will leave Hoffman as the sole "conservative" in the race and thus the most logical nominee to unite the regular GOP and the Conservative Party. Maybe that's the emerging strategy. What do you think Mr Ryan ?
Whats Up NY-23?: Doug Hoffman Smokes NY-23 & Leaves Competition in the Dust

NYDN: Bosses to Paterson: GET OUT !

The Daily News Ken Lovett (who covered my first race for mayor in 1991) says key Democrats and labor bosses are even more nervous about 2010 following the election of Scott Brown as US Senator from neighboring Massachusetts.
That's why they don't want to take a chance on Governor David Paterson heading the Democrat and Working Families lines on the ballot. They are worried the down ballot candidates will suffer.......Gee you think Montserrate or Espada might lose ?
The clamor is starting for Andrew Cuomo to announce for governor in order to save the day should the ranks of haters, racists and teabaggers become too much of a force at the ballot box.
For Paterson, its time to man-up as the pressure will be intense....For the good of the party, don't you know.
The drumbeat continues »

Addie Rips Governor

I guess Addie Russell doesn't think Governor Paterson has much of a future. The first term Assemblywoman has ripped the Governor as out of touch with his budget proposal. Usually members of the same party routinely bob their heads in approval of their governor.
Must be she figures he is a goner and given poll numbers, he may be.
Of course, Ms. Russell has to be outraged with the proposed closing of a prison in Ogdensburg and a member of the O-Burg City Council talking about running against her.
This may in part be the danger of years of "economic development" based on locking up downstaters in facilities politically sprinkled across upstate. The number of inmates is dropping and so some prison beds are being shed. Gotta start convicting some more downstaters of something.
Addie's denuniciation of the silly new sin taxes is refreshing although as a Democrat she seems to be having a bit of an epiphany.
But there is nothing wrong with the redemption of souls. I know because Ted Ford told me.
New York State Assembly - Member Section

Frank: Congress should not bypass the election results - Live Pulse -

You would think the most loquacious Congressman from the Bay State could at least offer a congratulatory word after his all-blue state rejected the politics of Barney Frank.....But at least Mr. Frank does respect the process and says the Dems should not act as if the Massachusetts election never happened.
In the insular world of our Nation's Capital, there will be efforts to dismiss Senator-Elect Brown as a fluke while the GOP will attempt to attach itself to the successful rising star.
Mr. Brown should steer clear of becoming the new GOP spokesman. People voted for conservatism, fiscal restrain and independence. As much as this election was a repudiation of Barney Frank and company, it should not be read as an affirmation of the other side of the aisle.
This could lead to a surge in pick up truck sales as politicians attempt to adapt to the new reality of the American electorate.
Frank: Congress should not bypass the election results - Live Pulse -

Hoffman Poll is Right On, But the Election is Months Off

Some of the wags who cover local politics are quick to discredit the poll numbers released by likely Congressional candidate Doug Hoffman....There is a desire to discredit the LAKE PLACID accountant and kill the baby in crib so this candidate doesn't make the big time again.
Well, I have no problem with the poll. It states the obvious. Mr Hoffman is well known after spending a boat load of money last year in a near win against Rep. Bill Owens. Name recognition is Hoffman's strongest suit and playing that card early is an effort to Big Foot the other two candidates out of the race.
Rivals Will Barclay and Matt Doheny reacted quickly.insisting they have the resources to win.
More clarity may come later this month when finance reports are due and this trio will have the chance to show us the money.
Fundraising is difficult, especially in the Federal model where individuals can contribute $2400 max and businesses are not allowed to give. Make no mistake this race will take money, because on the Democratic side that is the sole strategy.
Representitive Owens came from obscurity to Congress because of Washington money and he will stay there that way. Mr. Owens knows he is not going to become everyone's pal like John McHugh did over a lifetime in politics. So the Dems and their constituent groups like Big Labor will run lots of those commericials about working families vs. the evil "teabaggers."
There is a lot to learn from the Massachusetts race of Sen-Elect Scott Brown. The grass roots slog by pick-up truck; the opposition to crazy DC spending and the appeal to "independent" voters could propel a Republican nominee to victory in this 50-50 district.
That's a little bit of a challenge for Assemblyman Barclay who is so linked to Albany, old-style party politics, and comes from a Patrician background that's makes it difficult to run the pick-up truck campaign.
That's leaves Hoffman and Doheny. The latter has the knowledge of issues and politics painfully absent from Hoffman's effort last year and he is younger, making him a more forward looking choice.
Hoffman however, did make friends last year and ran a heck of an effort to ride Line D to 46% of the vote. Hoffman also has the outsider mantra and the support of key conservative groups including the NYS Conservative Party.
All three candidates have personal wealth that allows them the luxury of spending 2010 milling around the highways and byways of NNY.
If its stays a three way race, the ultimate winner will leave the September primary crippled and vulnerable.
If it goes to two candidates, I see it being Hoffman vs Doheny and as we stand here in January, Hoffman would win that primary. But the primary is in September and there is plenty of time for Doheny or Barclay to surge.
The first measure of the surge will be the coming finance reports. The wags will be watching.
Can it really be election season again already? | Grindstone Financial

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Hoffman Campaign Releases GOP Primary Poll

It looks like a GOP Congressional Primary is in the offing as Doug Hoffman has released a poll show him (OMG) the overwhelming favorite of Republicans. This looks like an intention to run to me and Hoffman will face off against Jefferson County businessman Matt Doheny and possibly Assemblyman Will Barclay.
A look at the internal numbers provided shows Hoffman with the best name recognition and Will Barclay the second choice, likely because his Assembly district is in Oswego County and his family name is well known in portions of NY23. His unsuccessful State Senate run seems to weigh on his popularity.
Matt Doheny scores as a virtual unknown and while he has made himself known to party activists, the broader audience has no knowledge of him. He needs to get some cable ads up throughout the district to build recognition and street cred. As a fresh face and a younger candidate than Hoffman, he could carve out the niche as a more forward looking candidate. Maybe Matt needs a pickup truck.
As for Hoffman, despite a good job last year coming out of nowhere to get 46%, he needs to resolve the residency issue as there is one local newspaper readying a
12-part award-winning series about carpetbagging.
Hoffman Campaign Releases GOP Primary Poll

Paterson to Tax New Gas Source...Budget also has many Cuts

Governor Paterson is following that natural gas mining in the state's Southern Tier.....In fact he is proposing to tax it, even though his own DEC hasn't figured out how to dispose of the waste water produced as a result of the vertical mining of Marcellus and Utica shale.
That is one revenue stream in a proposed budget out today that also cuts spending on school aid and closes prisons including one in Ogdensburg. The cuts are sure to raise cane with constiuencies and lawmakers unaccustomed to real cuts.
The governor is proposing again the sale of wine in super markets, an idea whose time has come if concurrent legislation will pass that relieves liquor stores of rules that hinder thier operations.
Read the Governor's message.
NYS DOB: Press Release

The Florist Says No Way to Wind Giveaway

Looks to me like the florist is representing his constituents in District 13 and Chairman Blankenbush is hanging on to the flawed paradigm that says all of us have to subsidize entrepreneurs who have their hand out.
These leaseback arrangements should not only not occur but the AG should take a dispassionate look at them in general. The deeding of properties to a public entity solely to avoid (evade?) sales and mortgage tax is bad public policy, or worse.
Scott Gray knows that and is trying to put a halt to it on this high profile case. Fact is it should stop altogether.
Legislator Gray will be reviled by the economic development folks. So what. He is doing right for the people.
UPDATE: I am told three county lawmakers have been targeted in an effort to flip them into favoring the 20 year PILOT for Big Wind. They Chairman Blankenbush, Legislator Gino Zando and Legislator Jennie Adsit.
If two of the three flip to Big Wind the deal is passed without having to have messy public discourse over the proposal.
Actually, I am told Big Wind could have their property tax abatement, if the county's IDA would not do a "lease-back" deal that obviates sales and mortgage tax.
Ironically the sales tax giveaway cuts revenue to communties miles away from Galloo Island where the wind farm will be located.
Watertown Daily Times | Gray: no sales tax deal on Galloo

Bay State Lessons

With voters going to the polls in the Bay State, it is interesting to watch Democrats react to what is widely expected to be a loss of a Senate seat they have held for decades.
Plans are being devised to enact the health bill quickly before a new GOP Senator can derail it by denying the House-Senate version the cloture vote needed.
Its like the President and his crew are in denial...The reason Democrat Martha Coakley is trailing is not because she called Bosox pitcher Curt Schilling a Yankee fan. Its not because she was lackluster on the stump.
The reason is that even in blue Massachusetts, people are pushing back against Obama and Democratic spending, taxing, regulating and blustering.
In a representitive republic, the people express their will through elections. The President and his ilk seem not only on the verge of losing a Senate seat, but also willing to deny the will of the majority.
If Scott Brown wins, look for it to be dismissed as hate-mongering "tea baggers" getting back at this transformational new President.
The real message is that Martha Coakley didn't go from a 30 point lead to a possible loss because she is suddenly reviled. The reason is voters have been getting too much of the chanage they didn't bargain for.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Pols Spurn Faith at Rally in Favor of Life

Certainly, I have for some time been the politician not associated with religion or the values that go along with it. Tonight however I was again the only elected official at a Prayer Vigil rally in favor of a right to life.
The rally in front of City Hall on a chilly Monday night attract some 150 plus people who held candles, heard music, and listened to friendly reminders that life is sacred and abortion, euthanasia and eugenics are not so sacred.
A couple months ago I hosted a prayer breakfast put on by local clergy.
The similarity in both events is no elected officials attended.
Now I believe in a reasonable separation of church and state, but the faith and values I find at events like tonight are a reminder of the right way to govern. So I wonder why the pols who run on family values and tell you what church they go to, spurn such events.
Perhaps its that in the secular world of politics that hanging out with right to lifers is like hanging out with terrorists. That's too bad, because values matter,especially in governing.
I may have been the one to eliminate the Lord's Prayer from the Council meeting but that doesn't mean I think public leaders should eliminate the values of religion from governing.
There were a lot of Catholics there tonight so I am sure my fellow lawmakers of that faith would have felt at home. Too bad they skipped this one.

Ford Rips Into Gillibrand in Prelude to Race for Nomination

More bad news for Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. Her potential opponent for the Dem nomination is taking off after her in a very direct way. Harold Ford Junior is describing Gilly as "weak" and a tool of the political establishment. Ford is definately running or he wouldn't be talking trash about his party's incumbent Senator.
Harold Ford, mulling an NY Senate run, says Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is 'weak'

Sharpton Warms Up to Ford

Another rough day for the upstate girl trying to play "one of us" with downstaters. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand made the obligatory MLK Day visit to Al Sharpton's National Action Network event, only to see the man running against her take center stage. Harold Ford and Reverand Al reminisced about past relationships and the support Ford's dad gave Sharpton's Presidential runs.
The black vote comprises a good 25% of ballots cast in a statewide Democratic primary and if the party gives Governor Paterson the heave-ho, you can bet this group will not be denied the Senate nod.
As Joe and Mika say, the "optics" didn't look good for Gilly at this event.
On the other hand it's a shame a US Senator feels the need to kiss the ring of the perpetrator of the Tawana Brawley hoax.
The Daily Politics - NY Daily News

By the End of Black History Month, Key Dems Hope to Get Paterson Under the Bus

Look for the bum's rush treatment to start soon as Attorney General Andrew Cuomo and the Democratic Party establishment try to stampede uncooperative and marginally unpopular Governor David Paterson out of the way. The goal is to get Cuomo in the race by March and party leaders who want a piece of the new admnistration best get on board....
Yesterday's stalker photos of the Governor having lunch with a family friend and then suddenly quotes appear on how Paterson should pay attention to the office instead of having lunch in New Jersey.
You will see....oops are seeing stories....about various party leaders saying its time to move aside for Andrew.
The presence of an incumbent Democratic officer duly elected to statewide office four years ago continues to pose a problem as normally to suggest pushing that person aside is heresy. Especially since that person is the state's first black governor.
It will be interesting to see if Paterson, who does have his suppporters, can withstand the clamors of the chattering class, especially hostile media like the NY Post.
Look for the party regulars, the unions, and the advocacy groups to use the coming budget process to excoriate Paterson in Democratic circles. Ironically, more conservative voters are rallying to Paterson's side, but that won't help him with the cultish left wing types that call the shots in the NYC DP and the Working Families Party.
Maybe Paterson shold start talking to Mike Long.

Ed Schultz: I'd cheat to keep Brown from winning - Water Cooler - Washington Times

The hysteria is growing in neighboring Massachusetts over a possible GOP win in the special election for US Senate. Pundits, who like to be with a winner, are quickly hedging their bets and suggesting Scott Brown could beat Democrat Martha Coakley. Yesterday, Representitive Patrick Kennedy repeatedly called her "Marcia" in continuing to offer his families backing.
Along comes the disturbing remarks of one of NBC's leftist entourage who is advocating cheating to deny Brown a win. Ed Schultz is the most ardent of the MSNBC talkers and gives insight into how far partisans will go to impose their orthodoxy.
Other screamers on behalf of Ms. Coakley, like the mayor of Boston, are telling black voters that Scott Brown's supporters are racists trying to make Barack Obama fail as America's first black President.
Ms. Coakley has campaigned poorly by all accounts, even insulting BOSOX legend Curt Schilling by erroneously calling him a Yankee fan.
What I think is driving Bay State voters to do the unthinkable is the notion that some really crazy lefties are driving the train in the Democratic Party and as such the national agenda. Pelosi, Barney Frank, SEIU, ACORN, and the list goes on.
Five years ago, a GOP slip from power began as voters in the middle became skittish with that party's leadership.
Most people are in the center of politics and the rantings of an Ed Schultz on what was once the Peacock Network not only frighten them but also set a horrible example for a new generation of citizens not very tuned into voting.
This morning NBC's David Schuster posed the question "are Massachusetts residents losing their minds ?"
Ed Schultz: I'd cheat to keep Brown from winning - Water Cooler - Washington Times

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Gov. Paterson says story he was nuzzling with a young woman is an 'outright lie'

Is the Governor being set up by hostile media loyal to Caroline Kennedy ?.....The NY Post ran a story Sunday suggesting untoward behavior by the Governor towards a young woman he was dining with in NJ.......The coroboration for the story seems a bit thin and one might wonder why the NY Post ran it. The paper has been a stalwart defender of Caroline Kennedy and has criticised the Governor for failing to appoint her to the US Senate.
There is a strong effort to force Paterson out of the race for Governor to clear the way for Andrew Cuomo to run, Is this story part of the effort ?
Gov. Paterson says story he was nuzzling with a young woman is an 'outright lie'

Questions Continue About Well Water

The WDT did a comprehensive story this AM on the fractured shale mining water and efforts to treat it at the City's sewage plant. The matter will be discussed at Tuesday's meeting.
Watertown Daily Times | Local News, Sports, Features, and Community Information for Jefferson County, St. Lawrence County, and Lewis County in Northern New York

Dave Paterson's Latina lovely -

Governor Paterson's personal life is fodder for the press nowadays and this is one of those interesting stories that if you live in Watertown and follow the MSM, you may not know about it, but if you read the Post....well that's another story.
Here we have the Governor in a New Jersey eatery reportedly "nuzzling" with an attractive staffer. The playful Governor was not with his wife and as you recall did admit to marital straying in the past. Last week the Governor's son was collared by the NYPD for rolling dice and possessing what was thought to be a stolen or missing credit card.
Now maybe the Guv thought going to New Jersey gave him a pass, but when you are in office there are always people anxious to report you to the authorities or in their absence, the media.
Now the Governor's office says he was having lunch with a friend.
I hope the NY Post is equally assertive in brining us photos of Andrew Cuomo's public nuzzling should it ever occur. As for Rick Lazio, I am just assuming he doesn't nuzzle.
Dave Paterson's Latina lovely -