Easter Rabbit on Pearl Street

Easter Rabbit on Pearl Street
That's Really Mrs. Drake from Water Street

Saturday, May 8, 2010

BOE Chooses SOB for More Voters

Despite a plea from City Council to find more neighborhood based polling places, the Jefferson County Board of Elections has decided to move more election districts to the Dulles State Office Building.
The two ED's that have voted at City Hall will join 4 southside ED's at the big building.
Concern over the State Office Building has revolved around the convenience of parking (or lack of) and the challenge of making the trek across the wind-swept plaza in front of the building.
Despite use of schools in countless communities and the support of the local school superintendent, the BOE still refuses to use these sites because of a fear that voters will abduct children.
School board votes are not affected by the County ruling.

Out of Gas or a Blitzkrieg in Waiting ? Not much time left...

Got a few comments from the Hoffman camp on how he might win.
There may very well be a strategy of trying to be the "true" conservative and not a creation of the bosses and Wall Street.
Mr. Hoffman does have name recognition and some momentum from last year. He is hardly bereft of resources on a personal level.
There is a silent majority out there who may not want the pick of the party leaders who last year gave them DeDe for Congress.
There may even be a secret war room in the bowels of Saranac Lake. And he did buy the house in NY23, although I am still waiting for some erstwhile MSM reporter to knock on the door to see who answers.
There may be something afoot, but I just haven't seen or heard it...

Doheny to Doug: Get Out !

There is one month until candidates have to start circulating nominating petitions and there is an emerging strategy in the GOP Congressional race.
Matt Doheny is keeping up the pressure by visiting virtually everywhere three Republicans are gathered on a street corner and the media (Liz) has been sold on the notion that Doug Hoffman is not doing much of anything. The narrative is he is raising no money and has no real organization.
The strategy is to further convince party activists and media that this is no longer a race......all in the hope someone (probably Mike Long) will give Mr. Hoffman the tap on the shoulder and tell him it's time to go.
The next proof of performance is who is able to circulate nominating petitions. The party establishment who normally get those signatures are in the tank for Doheny.
While Doheny can likely beat Hoffman in a GOP primary in September, that is still a risky scenario because it leaves Hoffman on Line D and threatens to split the conservative and Tea Party vote.
The Doheny strategy is to convince Hoffman to leave. They would certainly find a face saving way to do it, but from their vantage point a primary is problematic.
This is all sound strategy, but one way for Doheny to pile on is a TV buy in the next four weeks. This shows he has money and is for real. It increases the pressure on Hoffman as he is in a bubble left over from last year.
Hoffman's incredible rise from nowhere leaves him feeling he merely picks up where he left off. Not so. Its a different year....different candidates....and different rules.....
If I were Graham Wise instead of a wise Graham, I would turn up the mass media heat now and and start a stampede that will crush Mr. Hoffman's ability to get on the ballot and retain the D Line.
Just showing up in Speculator for a dinner Hoffman skipped is a start...but that alone won't finish him off. He needs to have people he trusts tell him its time to go.
Of course, I am just a blogger and not a licensed political operative, so take this all with the requisite grain of salt.

Will an Ill Wind Blow Through the 122nd ?

The one area where wind could be an issue this fall is the 122nd AD where Republican Ken Blankenbush put himself on both sides of the issue by casting the deciding vote in favor of Galloo and then voting to oppose further development.
While Blankenbush' position may seem problematic, his likely opponent may be bound by his own party's orthodoxy to say pretty much the same thing.
If Brian McGrath is the Dem candidate, he will not be able to break ranks with the unions who are in favor of wind projects and the construction jobs they bring. McGrath will also find it difficult to dispute his Lowville area neighbors who have cashed out on wind and he certainly cannot refute the Dem's rhetoric about "green energy."
Blankenbush is open to the charge he was a tool of Big Wind in the Galloo debate, but his opponent would be doing the same if he advocated wind on behalf of the unions and the green crowd.
If wind becomes an issue in 122, it will be interesting to watch both sides dance around what is a real issue.........
Or the pair could just utter bromides about fighting for our working families and protecting our seniors....Yeah, that's the ticket...

Friday, May 7, 2010

WDT | North wind farm market dries up

Votes have consequences and the Jefferson County Legislature now knows that as the NY Power Authority says it will not guarentee to buy power from projects in the county...including projects already proposed....
After a contentious debate over tax breaks for a Galloo Island wind farm, county lawmakers voted not to allow any NYPA projects off shore in Lake Ontario.
Without a guarenteed buyer of the power produced, these projects don't cost out and will not be built.
Is that what the legislators wanted or were they just voting against NYPA to spare themselves more controversy ?
Watertown Daily Times North wind farm market dries up

Stick a Fork in Hoffman if the Club Walks

See ya' Doug...that's the message from this missive from Liz' about Matt Doheny meeting with the conservative group responsible for Doug Hoffman's near win on Line D last year.
Mr. Doheny is cultivating an in with the Club for Growth during meetings this week in DC.
Mr. Doheny is the Alex Bay (We say Watertown) businessman who has become the favorite for the GOP nod through his non-stop travel about NY23 and his assiduous cultivating of even the most insignificant of poilitos......
Doheny wisely let the WDT break the story of his DC trip today and then let Liz drop the stink bomb about the Club just in time for the weekend.
Doheny Makes Inroads With Club For Growth

Editorial - Blame Albany - NYTimes.com

Across the State, local officials are blaming Albany for not reaching a budget that allows local governments to know what they are getting....In the meantime, cuts big and small are happening. Some say 6700 NYC teacher jobs may go..Cuts range to smaller levels where here in Watertown at least six positions have been cut in the last two cycles. A lot of it depends on local finances and the level of reliance on Albany.
Mayor Bloomberg gets support from his friends at the NY Times in this editorial blaming Albany, and the behavior of the Legislature and Governor are a sight to behold. However, there is a solid case for less state aid...and the notion that local governments should rely on their local tax base and adjust expenditures accordingly.
In recent decades, local government has grown by doing an end-run around the consitutional tax limit. Its done by alternative revenue sources, mostly state and federal aid combined with sales tax and fees.
You know the drill... Lawmaker X says "let's spend some money" and Lawmaker Y says "OK, but let's see if we can get a grant because I am all about the 'taxpayers' "
The only way change will happen is with dire cirsumstances....Look at Greece (the one in Europe and in NY). If Albany's dithering is making change happen locally, that's a good thing.

Editorial - Blame Albany - NYTimes.com

Where's the Hoffman Campaign ?

It's really hard to know what the folks out there are thinking, especially when you are trying to assess the mood of seven hundred thousand of them spread over 11 counties.
The fact that party "leaders" profess their allegiance to someone used to mean a lot more in the days when the leaders actually led. So the fact the a bunch of endorsements are streaming out may or may not be important.
However, it's hard to believe Doug Hoffman spokesman Rob Ryan when he keep's talking about the nascent surge that is bubbling beneath the surface in the "grass roots" of the district.
While missing a meeting in Hamilton County is not the end of life as we know it, it is important to note that GOP hopeful Matt Doheny is demonstrating crusade-like fervor in pursuing the prize. Constant travel and meetings with endless small groups is how you build grass roots and Doheny is doing that.
Doug Hoffman recently said he hadn't been out as much as his foe because tax season (he's an accountant) kept him busy. I am sure it did, but these days running for office is a full time job. Full time because you have to meet people and raise money.
While Mr.Hoffman surely does have supporters and they likely are not the leaders reporters can easily call to ask their opinion, I agree that Doheny is like the tortoise of yore building the relationships needed to win a primary and a general election.
In fact, I have been seeing more of Congressman Owens doing campaign-like stuff and he has no primary. For instance, the Congressman has made courtesy calls to local Indy Party leaders.....Now no organization is as small or thin as the Independence Party, but Owens and Doheny have found the time to at reach out....I assume they are doing the same to many other groups across the district.
A few years back, I entered a race I had lost four years earlier. I worked hard over the summer and my principle opponent said he was giving the voters the summer off...By primary day the results were dramatic and there was no time to recover.
That's why I think Mr. Doheny is building the blocks needed to win in the Fall and Mr. Owens knows that and is trying to do the same. We haven't seen a lot of that from Mr. Hoffman and a paid spokesperson always willing to be quoted is not enough.
Last year was a perfect storm for Doug Hoffman. That national attention will not happen again, so those grass roots are important. Doug Hoffman need to demonstrate viability soon as the deadline is nearing for Conservative Party chair Mike Long to issue him an out-of-party authorization which would lock up line D......At this point, I don't even know who is going to be gathering petitions for Hoffman. In a special election, you don't have to do that. In a regular election, you do. That still takes some grass roots support, because the party leaders will not help him out if they have cast their lot for Doheny.
There's lots of spicy phrases to describe this moment...I will opt for "fish or cut bait."
NY-23 GOP Official: Whither Hoffman?

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Sarah Palin endorses Carly Fiorina in California - Andy Barr - POLITICO.com

The tea party favorite didn't win the favor of Sarah Palin in the three way bid for the GOP Senate nomination in my native state of California.
Instead the former AK Governor picked former computer executive Carly Fiorina.
I always wonder about endorsements, either from media or from prominent politicians....And with Palin, the MSM will always go the extra mile to devalue the endorsement.
Nonetheless in a GOP primary there is an element that is swayed by an endorsement...We will see if Palin's nod influences who gets to run against Senator Barbara Boxer.
Sarah Palin endorses Carly Fiorina in California - Andy Barr - POLITICO.com

Two Years for Joe

Two Years is the sentence for Joe Bruno....and at age 81 that's something to ponder......He played in traffic too long and got run over...
BREAKING: BRUNO SENTENCED TO TWO YEARS IN PRISON: UPDATED

Take It In...Bring It Out..Please !

What's so difficult about the concept of 'bring it in...take it out' ?
I stopped by Factory Square Park...a small pocket park along the Black River....and found trash and empty beer and soda bottles.
It wasn't like it was trashed, but folks need to realize that the improvements to our city cannot be maintained solely by public funding....We all need to pick up after ourselves...
None of this is new..Litter is always a challenge.
I remember years ago admonishing a person for throwing trash out a window...He turned to me with a straight face and said....'Hey it creates jobs picking it up.'
Years of nanny-state teaching leaves too many with that attitude.

Taxis, Stock Exchange Seats, Now Wine.....Will Paterson's Medallion Plan Work ?

Governor Paterson has sent a letter to liquor store owners outlining what appears to be a common sense compromise on this issue of wine being sold everywhere.
The Governor proposes a three year transition period in which existing stores would be granted two "medallions" which could be sold to prospective supermarkets and other stores who want to carry wine in addition to beer.
Concern over being at a competitive disadvantage prompted liquor stores to oppose allowing wine to be sold everywhere.
The Paterson plan would allow owners to sell one or both medallions to stores who want to sell wine. If you sell both you are out of business.....The money would provide the means for transition to the new market place in that industry.
It would also limit the number of new outlets to more more than twice the number of existing liquor stores. The law would sunset in three years and then anyone could sell wine.
A small liquor store staying in business could sell a medallion to a big chain.
The downside is small business owners may make some money and that will provoke opposition from lawmakers who cannot stomach the little guy getting a break.
Other changes include eliminating the ban on owning more than one liquor store and allowing director sale of product to on-premise licensees.
Many big food chains have already bought a liquor store so they can take advantage of a program like this, although there will be enough demand for medallions that even a small outlet can benefit.
Liquor store owners have been the ones to live with Byzantine regulations for years and if the industry is to change, they and their famlies need an opportunity to adapt.
The Governor's proposal deserves a hard look.

GOP senators propose measures to stop bullying - Capitol Confidential

Is the proposed GOP anti-bullying law designed to protect kids or is it to protect Republican Senators from their thuggish Democratic counterparts like Sen. Kevin Parker or Majority Leader Pedro Espada ?
We could call it Patty's Law since, if she wins, Patty Ritchie will have to deal with some real bullies in Albany.
Funny how with no prospect of a budget, lawmakers have time to hold a press conference to rail against the latest social pathology to garner air time on the cable news shows.
GOP senators propose measures to stop bullying - Capitol Confidential

It's Grass Roots for Joe the Plumber

This is kind of quaint...a celebrity running and winning not for high office but the lowest office in our political system....County Committee.
Joe the Plumber (Samuel Wurzelbacher) has been elected as one of 400 GOP county committee members in Lucas County, Ohio. That's the Toledo area where Joe rocketed to fame last year after prompting Barack Obama to profess his desire to spread the wealth around.
Good for Joe, getting involved in politics at this level.

WDT: Blankenbush Back to Being Only Candidate (so far)

That didn't last long....Former Lewis County GOP Chair Patrick Mahar now says he is not running against Ken Blankenbush for the party nomination for Assembly in the 122nd. He cited family issues, but it seems to me those same issues existed a week ago. More likely is what seemed like a good idea a week ago suddenly seems like a waste of time.
Blankenbush has the nomination locked due to a head start and support of what's left of the party machine.
Also the pending candidacy of Lowville native Brian McGrath makes the race far more of a challenge. This was a district long assumed to be a throwaway for Dems, but the Party of Yes apparently has a competant candidate with the cash to compete.
The seat is now held by Diedre Scozzafava, the Republican who watched her party faithful abandon her Congressional run last year.
Don't look for her to give a hoot about helping Blankenbush, and a well marketed McGrath could win.
Watertown Daily Times Local News, Sports, Features, and Community Information for Jefferson County, St. Lawrence County, and Lewis County in Northern New York

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Lassie For Assembly?

While good government advocates like Mayor Koch work the Capitol looking for support for non-partisan redistricting legislation, Assembly Speaker Silver threw cold water on the plan....He said districts like his in Manhattan will never be competitive between the two major parties and that Lassie could get elected in his AD on the Dem. Line.
Of course the speaker misses the point. Districts of equal population that reflect a common interest are what is wanted. That's what we have in Mr. Silver's AD...What we need less of are suburban and rural districts meandering and zig-zagging through and around communities solely to ensure a partisan result.
Like the Griffo Senate seat that includes Utica on one end and Massena on the other....or the "bar bell" CD of Louise Slaughter that connects urban enclaves in Rochester and Buffalo by a thin corridor of farm land.
Look at a map Mr. Speaker....You know what goes on.
Lassie For Assembly?

City Employees Within Sight of Danger During Big Apple Visit

Two City of Watertown employees were among those in Times Square on Saturday and saw smoke rising from the Pathfinder that contained a crude explosive device designed to kill and maim persons visiting the Crossroads of the World.
City Clerk Donna Dutton and her aide Elyse Frezzo were in the Apple with a bus tour fundraiser for Relay for Life. Both were eating in a Times Square restaurant and upon exiting saw the commotion and people fleeing the scene of the car bomb. Mrs. Dutton says her view of the vehicle was obscured by emergency vehicles, but she could see smoke.
The intrepid pair said they didn't flee and otherwise enjoyed their brush with history.

Black Hopefuls Pick This Year in G.O.P. Races - NYTimes.com

For Democrats, this is likely seen as a gaggle of Uncle Tom's, but for the Party of No, its a good trend to shed the monolithic image conservatives have been afforded by the MSM.
At least 32 GOP House candidates who are black are running in the 2010 election . This NY Times piece exposes the trend at a time when the Chris Matthews crowd and the President himself are publicly uttering the vulgarism "teabaggers" as a means of discrediting the GOP and the conservative movement.
The election of Barack Obama may have for some cemented the Democratic Party as the home for blacks....but it seems some didn't get the memo.
In a nation where race baiting goes on all the time and the media constantly defines people not by their character but by their color, these 32 candidates are refreshing and this is a trend the GOP would be well-served by encouraging.
Black Hopefuls Pick This Year in G.O.P. Races - NYTimes.com

Paterson: May 17 date for State Worker Furloughs (aka paid vacation)

State Government always chugs along despite a lack of a budget, so why should anyone take the current cash flow problems seriously...The Governor is...the Legislature is not...
Now lawmakers are going along with the furlough program rather than make the cuts needed to pass a budget...There have to be fewer people working...Lawmakers won't do that so state workers may end up with paid vacation days dressed up as a furlough.
Idling workers and not paying them will prompt a court challenge by the unions....The unions will win because a contract is a contract...and the state will end up paying for the days off. It happened in California...It will play out that way in NY.
The furlough plan will not save money in the long term....Cutting the number of state workers will...That's what the Legislature refuses to do.
Paterson: May 17 date for state worker furloughs -- Page 1 -- Times Union - Albany NY

Paterson and Silver Take A Pass On Bruno Sentencing »

For 14 years, Joe Bruno was a really big deal in Albany...As Senate Majority leader he was one of the three men in the room, dictating the direction of state government.
Now Bruno is facing sentencing this week on corruption charges and the state he helped shape is hardly a better place for his efforts....And as happens, Joe Bruno has few friends.
For many in Albany its a case of whistling past the graveyard as they know it could just as easily be them. Corruption is a matter of definition...how you frame events....and for Bruno the gig was finally up....That's not to say what he did was unusual or not fully known about.....
A broken man in his 80's, no matter how dapper the dress, is a sad thing to watch. But, he played the game and knew the rules...He got caught.
Paterson and Silver Take A Pass On Bruno Sentencing »

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Onondaga County Legislature passes sales tax deal |

Talk about hard ball....In Onondaga County a newly authorized sales tax distribution agreement ends payments to Towns and Villages after three years and dramatically cuts payments school districts are getting....Onondaga County is grabbing tens of millions more and the City of Syracuse did the best it could but is still taking a cut.
State law allows cities to pre-empt sales tax by taking half the local share of what's collected within their boundaries. Cities can foregoe preemption and opt for a distribution agreement with the county. No other subordinate governments are allowed to have such a contract, so towns, villages and in some cases school districts can only get a cut if a city-county agreement says so. Such is the case in Jefferson County.
The new agreement in Onondaga big-footed the Towns and Villages in favor of a county money grab.
Counties everywhere would like to do the same and that would put an end to town supervisors touting their zero town property tax levies....Of course there is a strong argument that the enormous revenue streams from sales tax insulate towns, villages and cities from making any really tough decisions. In the City of Watertown, the revenue from sales tax is twice that of property tax....and in many towns the sales tax obviates property tax all together.
The current Jefferson County agreement was passed in 2004 with some contention but it seems to be without congtroversy....at least till it gets bumped to 8%...Then there will be something to argue about again.
Onondaga County Legislature passes sales tax deal

From Babbitt to Barack....Dave's Journey to the Left

Time was a successful businessman pushing 60 with homes in Florida, Watertown and Wellesley Island would automatically be a Republican...if for no other reason than all his contemporaries are.
Not so with my good friend Dave Mance, retired radio baron and recent fill-in director at the Chamber of Commerce.....
Dave used to be like a character in a Sinclair Lewis novel......your basic capitalist, serving on boards, active in the community, house on a tree-lined street, beautiful wife and kids type of guy.
He was an optimist in the tradition on Ronald Reagan....Dave calls it Big Tent Republicanism.

Dave has changed....He would say Republicanism has changed.

Now Dave supports President Barack Obama and while POTUS' numbers have slid of late, Dave's support has not....
Dave supports Obamacare, although as a retired businessman he no longer has to plan on paying for insurance for employee's kids up to age 26.
Dave says the Republican Party is the Party of No and of Armegeddon.
He tells me of his many friends who are attending a Bill Owens fundraiser in June, whereas years ago such a dalliance with a Democrat would be unthinkable.
I follow the intellectual meanderings of Dave because I view him as a bellweather. Barack Obama didn't win because Blacks or Hispanics voted for him....Those are core Democratic constituencies.
Mr. Obama won because the tony cocktail crowd along the islands of the St. Lawrence went for him....They voted against their pay grade.
Dave was a frugal man in business....Now he says the rich should pay more....
I don't think the parties mean much of anything except to those marinated in the system....So I don't see folks like Dave heading back to what's left of that social set in NNY. Republicanism as we know it is dead and gone.
That doesn't mean the the policies of Obama are sound....Fiscally they are ruinous, but to get the Mance vote back, conservatives need more than the shrillness of a political party in its death throes.

If this is how Ed Koch doesn't insult someone ... (UPDATED)

Hizzoner.....Mayor Ed Koch is long in the tooth and long retired....But he is making hay with frank talk about the need for change in government.
If this is how Ed Koch doesn't insult someone ... (UPDATED)

New Chamber Director Brings Small Business History

A former executive of Jreck Subs has been named Director and President of the Greater Watertown Chamber of Commerce. Peter Whitmore got the nod today, taking over from interim boss David Mance.
Mr. Whitmore was the favorite going into the final selection and his years in business seemed to be a deciding factor.
The new director succeeds Karen Delmonico who resigned last year. Mr. Whitmore says he hopes to bring his business acumen to the running of the Chamber.
The announcement was made by Chamber Board Chairman David Males.

Monday, May 3, 2010

OJ: Charging Kids to Use City Pools is a Bad Idea I Have Personal Experience With

Boy, does this Ogdensburg story sound like Deja Vu......Back in the 90s, the City of Watertown enacted an ill-advised measure to charge kids for using the city's pools.....It didn't take long for the Council and I to realize what a bad idea that was.....People who use municipal pools are the ones most in need of such diversions......Nicking them for 50 cents is a bad idea.
If Mayor Nelson wants some insight, I am there for him...Been there, done that....
The Journal Firefighters Help With Pool Fees IAFF Local 1799 Donates $500 To Buy Passes For 50 Needy Kids

Early to Bed Lawmakers Spar with Night Owls Over Park Rules

City Council continued it's review of rules for city parks and placed no hours of operation on the Fairgrounds (except for picnic and trail areas)....Lawmakers also agreed to leave Thompson Park open until midnight...three hours later than the current closing.
That's an improvement as harsh restrictions were placed on parks following the post-Woodstock era.
Councilmembers will grapple next week with open container restrictions which forbid a beer with your grilled burger unless you go to the PD the day before and get a permit.
When ask how all those people drink at the Syracuse Symphony Concert, Council was told someone got a permit for all those thousands of people.
That led to questions about the permit process and a continuation of discussions next week.
Still unresolved is finding a legal method to accomodate use of the deck at Whitewater Park.
A spirited discussion of the old days at the Park left younger Council members puzzled about how people could actually be out late at night having a good time.
"Nothing good happens after midnight," said one Councilman.

At DRC, Assembly candidates talk it out - Capitol Confidential

Meanwhile on the Democratic side of the 122nd a lot of pow-wowing at the Democratic Rural Conference in Niagara Falls and it looks to me like attorney Brian McGrath is a candidate....Why would he be there otherwise ?
McGrath was seen talking to Assemblywoman Addie Russell and her aide Mark Pacilio.......Pacillio keeps saying he is considering a run...
Is he serious ? He has a chief of staff job for a Member of Assembly who is a cinch to get reelected. His prospects are not so good in the 122nd as he doesn't have the personal bankroll of McGrath and likely doesn't have the embrace of June O'Neill.
Mr. Pacilio is a nice fellow but would not beat likely GOP nominee Ken Blankenbush.
McGrath is a lawyer...is from Lowville...has a successful career and cash....What more do you need ?
At DRC, Assembly candidates talk it out - Capitol Confidential

Talking to Tea Partiers is Good Politics for Dems Too

A blogger reports today that NNY Congressman Bill Owens has declined an offer to speak to UNYTEA....That's the Upstate Tea Partiers who have become a political force.
Its true the tea party movement is less inclined to support current policies out of the Democratic-controlled nation's capital. Nonetheless, the tea partiers are not the whacko birthers the MSM would have you believe.
They are people concerned about the expanding size and scope of the central government and the resulting debt that could turn us into the next Greece.
These are mainstream sentiments and worth a listen.
We urge the Congressman, who has been very accessible of late, to take time to listen to this group.

The Ying and Yang of a Running Mate from Cape Vincent

This is a year when there will be increased scrutiny on who the running mates are.
Four years ago Eliot Spitzer was the Sheriff of Wall Street and a star. Nobody paid attention to his running mate selection and I suspect most NNY Dems couldn't have named the number two.
That changed when the young and healthy Spitzer showed you can leave office quickly without sudden death.
So when a name like Senator Aubertine comes up, we chuckle at first but then take a more serious look see. You set up the matrix.
He is friendly on the eyes, but is a dubious debater. He is a guy without personal scandal and projects an upstate family-oriented, work ethic persona that compares well to the slicker, swarmier image of the downstaters being mentioned.
On the other hand, Senator Aubertine is more Palin than Palin in his lack of the education credentials we usually vote for. No law degree...No Ivy League...
Then there is abortion. Darrel Aubertine is pro-life and that would enrage the Downstate Libs. He would have to scamper to the left in the short term, but frankly the things that enrage Anthony Wiener likely endear Darrel to upstaters.
Aubertine is a risky choice but in the areas of character and down to earthness, he helps out.
At this point, Team Cuomo may leak several names in part to test the waters and in part to spread the love to Dems who are in need of the imprimatur of importance to win their own race.
Let's see what happens in the run up to the convention.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Aubertine Candidacy Would Affect Down Ballot Races Locally

For Andrew Cuomo, it doesn't matter who his running mate is. He wins anyway......Mr. Cuomo certainly doesn't have to shore up his base by choosing a downstate liberal of color who is a woman.
That's why the Aubertine choice is not as far out as it sounds.
The effect of that ticket on NNY would be interesting.....Senator Aubertine on the top of the ticket would create large Cuomo numbers here and make the down-ballot problem in the GOP even worse.
As it is now, folks like Doheny and Ritchie have to worry how much the Cuomo-Schumer-Gillibrand-DiNapoli line-up will drag them away from victory.
The interest of Mr. Cuomo in a Long Island woman as AG candidate may explain his willingness to consider an upstate male as running mate.
Of course, this all may be a parlor game....But as political hobbyists, that's what we do !

Darrel Aubertine for Lt. Governor | Room Eight

With no announced candidate for governor, and a convention less than a month away there is little chance to consider possible candidates for the number two spot....Now Senator Darrel Aubertine's name is being floated...Simply because unlike everyone else in the Democratic Party he is not a thug and has no scandal...(well he did briefly hire his sister).
All but certain Gubernatorial nominee Andrew Cuomo may be looking for balance...Upstate-Downstate.....male-female.....white-black....sighted-blind.....How about a couple of guys without personal scandal or bad habits.
The only problem with Aubertine is he is against abortion....a third-rail issue in that party...Nonetheless this piece raises an interesting argument for Aubertine...and if nothing else, it enhances the Senator's reelection prospects just to be considered.
A sidebar.......If this is true look for Addie Russell to compete for the 48th Senate District.
Darrel Aubertine for Lt. Governor Room Eight

OBAMA CHEATING SCANDAL ? Enquirer Rolls the Dice With This One

After taking out former Senator John Edwards by reporting on his dalliances when others would not, the Enquirer is going after a mighty big fish. In running this story on POTUS, the Enquirer is putting on the line credibility it has earned in being the only publication willing to tackle stories like Edwards.
In this case, I don't think one hotel liason....if it occured..... is going to phase the American public, who generally compartmentalize these type of things. Certainly, the MSM doesn't care.
I think Tiger Woods has raised the bar for egregious infidelity and even so, many are not upset at that. As for this stuff, place it in the same bin as I put negative coverage of people I like.
OBAMA CHEATING SCANDAL: SHOCKING NEW REPORTS - Celebrity News Gossip - National Enquirer

God Must Love Superintendents...That's Why He Made So Many !

Kudos to this scribe for pointing out what has become increasingly obvious to everyone except those in the "Club".
The Club would be the 700 + superintendents and thousands of others just below them who are strangling public education with a duplicative and inefficient system that is soaking up billions of dollars without improving education.
There are a lot of reasons education is so expensive...One is because anything worthwhile does have a cost...But a superintendent every five miles is not among the list of things that really benefit "the children." Neither is the stranglehold the unions have on Albany.
Big changes are needed and ironically while many have talked in recent years about the inefficiencies of cities, towns and villages....somehow this crazy-quilt system of school districts is exempt from discussion. Mr. White, in his column, raises a valid issue. Perhaps through charts, tables, pie graphs or just a series of photos all the superintendents and their complete compensation packages, the press could help generate a broader debate on the issue.
Watertown Daily Times Local News, Sports, Features, and Community Information for Jefferson County, St. Lawrence County, and Lewis County in Northern New York

The Vanity Fair/Bloomberg White House Correspondents' Dinner Party | VF Daily | Vanity Fair

Meanwhile, the best party afterwards was at the French ambassadors house and was put on by Vanity Fair. Michael Douglas led a list of journalists at this soire.
The Vanity Fair/Bloomberg White House Correspondents' Dinner Party VF Daily Vanity Fair

The Elite Gather and Find Each Other Fascinating

I took the option of hitting the hay early Saturday night after working late Friday, so I missed on TV the White House Correspondents Association dinner at the Washington Hilton.
This is a self-congratulatory event where media, celebrities and official Washington can mix and mingle and feel so, so good about what they are doing.
It's also a chance for the President to show up and deliver some one-liners and further cement the love the press corps has for him.
Today, I will see snippets of the event on the news and I am sure President Obama will do a great job (actually upon watching, it was a so-so performance, but that's OK as his job is not to be a comedian.)
The media will go back to their jobs to report on the issues important to average, lunch bucket, Joe Six-Pack Americans.....None of whom were all gussied up and in attendance at this pompous gathering of the Nation's elite and wannabe elites.
Among those who felt the need to be there was NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who had to leave early because of a Times Square bomb scare.
How galling......Duty interupting such an important event.

Dems in the Falls: Rigging It For Rice?

The only excitement for Democrats gathering in Niagara Falls over the weekend was the race for the nomination for Attorney General and the chance to succeed AG Andrew Cuomo, who is expected to run for Governor.
A fellow named Eric Dinallo won the straw poll of upstate Dems, but there was carping at the second place finish of Kathleen Rice, a Long Island District Attorney....Some felt State Chair Jay Jacobs was busy pushing her candidacy at the behest of Team Cuomo and that led to her surprise second place finish in the beauty contest.
Gee, party leaders who purport to be neutral actually trying to influence results and nudge the race one way or the other....Hardly unusual. It could be Ms. Rice is viewed as a better statewide candidate and will help the ticket, although it looks now like all the statewide races will go Democratic since Republicans have no known candidate for any of the six races.
Jefferson County Dems were backing third place finisher Sean Coffey.
There will almost certainly be a primary for AG as Mr. Coffey has said he will go that route regardless of the results of this month's party convention.
Rigging It For Rice? (Updated)