Saturday, October 16, 2010

DeDe the Democrat....and Addie Best Look Over Her Shoulder

Republican Assemblywoman Diedre Scozzafava is taking her newfound love of the Democratic Party seriously.
Monday evening, she and her husband are hosting a Debate Watch Party at Mullins Restaurant in Gouverneur....Oh its a party for supporters of Andrew Cuomo.
Last week she was in Westchester for a Cuomo rally....And she is still drawing a paycheck as an Assembly member elected under the GOP banner. (Don Coon just uttered an expletive reading this)
I am glad I am not in a major party so when I go off on a tangent I am not hurting anyone's feelings.

In other Democrat news, Addie Russell is said to have had an 18 point lead six weeks ago before anyone knew who David Forsythe was. Now Forsythe has launched a massive media blitz and that race may be closer than most had thought, although the chattering class still thinks Ms. Russell has the edge.

More Free S--- from Barack's Stash

As I sit I am talking to a man at Pete's who owns a small telephone company and a cable company that serves the Alexandria Bay area (and yes he knows I am writing this)....He says he recently got a $3.7 million grant from Washington to provide Internet service to remote areas and access to a similar size interest free loan. All part of that there stimulus.
Another private phone company in Nicholville got a free $20M. The Indian reservations got a bunch too.....
And all this time I thought those kind of services had to be offered based on market factors...You know, things like economies of scale.
This Obama era is great. People get money for nothing...
Next thing you know they will be giving grants to open taverns in remote places...Hey that's an essential service too !

With Field of Seven, MSM Finally Has to Talk About Minor Party Hopefuls

We've been telling you about the five minor party candidates for governor who will be on display at Monday's debate in Hempstead. It will be interesting to see how they perform.
One is a comedian/entertainer named Jimmy McMillan. One assumes he will be interesting. As we heard on the HOTLINE yesterday, Libertarian Warren Redlich has a polished set of talking points on overspending in Albany. Also this week, I interviewed Howie Hawkins who is well read and well versed in progressive politics in a year when everyone is trying to appear conservative.
Charles Barron is an experienced lawmaker in NYC and his wife is a member of the Assembly. I am sure he can talk up a storm.
Meanwhile, Kristin Davis comes in with considerable notoriety due her previous occupation as a madam, but that's a double edge sword as she will have to rise above the infamy to earn some of the limited number of votes available to third party candidates. She is smart and well spoken and my read is she will do well and in this field her gender will allow her to stand apart from the guys.
Clearly, most voters will vote for a major party candidate on line A or B, while some will vote for Mr. Cuomo or Mr. Paladino on one of their "me too" lines. Of the estimated 4.5 million to cast ballots this November,it is likely only about 5% of those would even consider an independent candidate.
Although with it looking like Mr. Paladino will be blown out by 25 points, some voters may be more willing to cast a protest vote or a strategic vote to help a new party get ballot status.
Third-party candidates for N.Y. governor add interesting element to election The Ithaca Journal

Harry Wilson is the Token Republican for NY's Lefties

The dog whistle has been blown...The NY Times endorses Republican Harry Wilson for Comptroller on the heels of Andrew Cuomo refusing to endorse Democrat incumbent Tom DiNapoli....And last summer, the Dems new BFF , the Independence Party also backed Mr. Wilson.
This means all you Ted Fords of the world have the green light to vote for Harry Wilson.
Times Endorses Wilson, Schneiderman

WDT: Dems Now Say Patty's a Lousy Clerk and a Paladino Pal

Here are some attack ads including two against Patty Ritchie...One seeks to turn the operation of the SLC Clerks office against her...not sure that works because generally everyone has praised her efforts in the past...These accusations don't coincide with current impressions, except perhaps for Oswego County residents who are not in our media sphere.
The other spot links Ritchie with gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino....The link is made because Ritchie sought and got the Taxpayer Party designation originated by Paladino.
Republicans are running from Paladino, to the point they won't talk about him at GOP dinners like the other night in Alex Bay. But again, I don't think the ad works as Paladino's numbers up here will be better than his statewide averages and if you believe Paladino is right on making cuts...that would drive you to Patty , not away. The old saw about cutting teachers and nurses only motivates those already voting Democratic.
I think Democrats have dropped the ball on the issue of Dean Skelos, Pedro Espada, Montserrate, and the "Coup". There's a lot of meat on that bone, but its getting late and its pretty hard to sully Ms Ritchie at this point when for months she has been knocking on doors, making friends and talking about a record in county government nobody every complained about til this week.
Then again, the spate of negative ads on Doug Hoffman did shift the GOP primary by the few points needed, so conventional wisdom says anything is possible.
Watertown Daily Times Four ads you won't see on YouTube

WDT: A Bay's Crazy Sign Law Targets the Little Guy

This is really from the "if it ain't broke don't fix it" department. Alexandria Bay officials are trying to force a law on local businesses to ban sidewalk signs on the basis they are a safety hazard....Even though the Mayor admits there is no recorded instance of a mishap.
Merchants are mad as their right to exercise commercial speech is infringed.
This is a village that depends on commercial activity...the kind of small businesses that need means to get their message out.
Signs on sidewalks, buildings and awnings are classic Americana, an no rational person would resist reasonable requirements to make sure the signs in question are sturdy and safe.
Sidewalk signs are where you find out what the lunch special is or what entertainment there is tonight. Those who get in government and then use their role to harass and hinder small business should really consider a career change.
Watertown Daily Times Bay businesses still sour on sign restriction

Russell-Koch Fight Continues

Addie Russell has returned fire to Mayor Ed Koch, saying in a post that she doesn't need to sign a pledge to be a reformer.
That's true, and I too am not a fan of pledges or contracts. That's why I declined to sign Andrew Cuomo's pledge last summer even though I agree with much of what was being advanced.
The New York Uprising pledge for political reform has been signed by other candidates and Mayor Koch is railing against Russell and urging instead the election of Republican David Forsythe in AD118.
I like Addie, but I would like to meet Mayor Koch so I hope he does come up here. I remember reading his book years ago and thought he was a good mayor.

Rove in NNY ?

Should we add GOP operative and FOX News commentator Karl Rove to the list of outside interests in our local State Senate race ?
Democrats say so.....They privately allege the Rove PAC called American Crossroads is spending some $400K on SD 48 because of the importance control of the Senate plays in Congressional redistricting.
Like much of this third party money, there is no easy way of knowing for sure....I am not even sure it matters.

Patty Sails Through Debate...Aubertine Looks for an Opening

I guess the exchange was heated Friday morning in the State Senate debate as Senator Darrel Aubertine took a stab at flushing out opponent Patty Ritchie, but we won't see it for a full week. The taped debate will air next Friday.
Some of my media friends get mad at me for saying it, but thats bizarre. It's not even news by then.
News accounts describe the event as "icy" with Mr. Aubertine trying to pierce the veil of platitudes that is the Ritchie campaign and Ms. Ritchie trying to hold Mr. Aubertine accountable for the Senate coup and the antics of members of his caucus.
This is the first and last televised confrontation between the pair and the damage to the Ritchie campaign is minimal. A week old tape of a debate will attract no audience and its not like it becomes "news" again next Friday.
Most insiders say this is about a six point race in favor of Ms. Ritchie and with two more weeks of brutal ads raking Albany's Democrats, there is not much that will change that.
The Aubertine campaign is hoping the media will somehow point out that the Ritchie campaign is a cipher with no plan for addressing area issues. That's not the media's job, it's the candidate's.
It could be a majority of voters don't want a plan, they want change...Anything other than what has happened the past two years.
Watertown Daily Times State Senate opponents square off in TV debate

Friday, October 15, 2010

Cuomo Up By 26.....It Really is Over

Its so over for Carl Paladino....I know someone will say I am jumping the gun but a new poll has the race at 59-33...A 26 point margin...
On a turnout of 4.5 million, thats a margin of victory for Andrew Cuomo of nearly 1.2 million....
Now for the sake of Andrews ego that big margin is gratifying....But instead of 1.2 million, lets say he wins by 1 million...Then those 200K could vote for third party candidates and help them get a ballot spot for four years.
Four years ago, we let Eliot Spitzer run up the score...70%.....He ended up a failure, in part because the big margin went to his head.
Let Andrew win by less...The humility will be good for him. - Latest poll shows Dems ahead in four races

HOTLINE: Libertarian Rips at Foes in Politics as Usual Rant

Libertarian candidate for Governor Warren Redlich was doing fine on the HOTLINE today till he started dumping on my candidate and her staff.
Redlich is a smooth talking GOP refugee. I didn't see much new on his platform from what I have heard from Republican candidates in the past. The true libertarian platform in the race rests with Kristin Davis, so I respectfully cannot recommend Mr.Redlich if you are so inclined.
Oct. 15 'Hotline'

Watertown Business Gets a Piece of Governor Race

No matter your choice for Governor, only one of the seven candidates on the ballot spent money in Watertown. The Kristin Davis campaign took delivery Friday on an order of T-Shirts with the campaign logo printed on them. The shirts were done by AVL signs on JB Wise Place in downtown Watertown.
The firm's owner Jason had caught the eye of the campaign with a sign he designed and they contacted him with the order.
Its good to see local vendors used by candidates instead of out of state suppliers used by many.

Is Impugning Manhood Campaigning Below the Belt ?

With so many talented women now running for office, here's one more secret fear men will have to deal with when facing females on the debate stage.
GOP Senate candidate Sharron Angle told Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to "man up" when it comes to dealing with Social Security.
What guy wants to be on live TV facing off against an attractive,smart, articulate, power-dressed woman and suddenly be told there is a glaring manhood deficiency ?....What do you say to that other than "you go girl."? Its like Sarah Palin saying you lack cajones...Oh thats right she did that the President of the United States. No one is immune.
I am going to stop by the taping of the local state senate debate....Wonder if Patty will turn to the Senator and say "Man up Darrel."
No...couldn't happen...You ever seen him throw a bale of hay ?
Nev. showdown: Reid calls Angle 'extreme,' she tells him to 'man up' - The Hill's Ballot Box

Cuomo Pledges To Make Gay Marriage Legal on His Watch

The safe campaign of Andrew Cuomo thought the coast was clear enough on same sex marriage for the candidate to stop by the Gay Pride dinner in NYC for a little pandering in the wake of opponent Carl Paladino's over the top remarks on gays at a Brooklyn synagogue.
Marriage equality is going to be a big issue again in 2011 following a defeat of the measure in the Senate last year, when eight Democrats strayed from the orthodoxy to oppose the measure. With the makeup of the Senate likely to be the same or slightly more GOP, its hard to see how the measure passes, but the Paladino incident actually helps as most lawmakers don't like to be seen as extremists and thats the message that was portrayed by the Buffalo businessman..
With the military's 'don't ask, don't tell' likely to fold in the coming months, marriage equality could pass in 2011 but it would take a lot of leaning on by the new governor......And issues like this don't lend themselves to the usual tactic of horse trading for a new bridge civic center in exchange for a vote on a social issue.
TheDailyPolitics - NY Daily News

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Davis and Others Have Interesting Stories to Tell

Since its hard to learn about the minor candidates, I came across this excellent backgrounder on Kristin Davis on her Facebook Page. Check it out.

Candidates Ready for One and Likely the Only Debate of 2010 Run for Governor

The seven candidates for Governor of New York gather on Long Island Monday to debate....But before then they are prepping for the showdown.
For Andrew Cuomo, its just a case of avoiding a big gaffe and let the others pepper him...For Carl Paladino, it's his only remaining chance to appear gubernatorial compared to Mr. Cuomo.
For the five minor party candidates, its a chance to break through and make a name for themselves and their parties. They are all trying to get the requisite 50,000 votes.
The only female in the race, Kristin Davis cancelled weekend events in Central New York to concentrate on debate prep with key advisors, including political guru Roger Stone.
Candidates like Charles Barron hope to go after minority voters which suggests an attack on Mr. Cuomo and the Democratic establishment.
Green candidate Howie Hawkins will run left as the progressive alternative to Mr. Cuomo who has tacked right in the wake of the state's fiscal problems.
I'm not sure what strategy Libertarian Warren Redlich has other than to be a less abrasive Republican than Paladino.
Rent is 2 Damn High candidate Jimmy McMillan will likely plead the case for poor being driven from Manhattan guessed it....high rent.
Charles Barron On Monday's Big Debate: "I'm In It To Win, Not To Spoil, Not To Entertain"

Republicans Eat for Victory in Alex Bay/ Lefty Visits HOTLINE

You'd never know there was a race for Governor...or two for US Senate...or Comptroller...or Attorney General, as none of those races or candidates were mentioned by speakers at Thursdays Jefferson County GOP Dinner in Alex Bay.
The absence of references to any of those races is likely due to the fact that party leaders have conceded those races, in particular the disastrous candidate of Carl Paladino.
Local races dominated and Congressional hopeful Matt Doheny got the most enthusiastic reception.
Senate hopeful Patty Ritchie worked the crowd but left early to prepare for a videotaped debate Friday morning at WPBS.
Earlier in the day, Green Party gubernatorial candidate Howie Hawkins visisted the HOTLINE and gave a good left of Cuomo treatise on New York State's woes.
The Teamster and Syracuse resident is a Dartmouth grad and is working hard to get his party the 50,000 votes needed for ballot status.

Koch’s Posters

Robocalls, posters and possibly a visit to the district as former NYC Mayor Ed Koch gives the full monte to his enemies like Assemblywoman Addie Russell. Hizzoner is showing energy for an 85 year old, but Mr. Koch seems serious about taking out lawmakers who wouldn't sign his pledge.
In the 118th the former Democratic mayor is backing Republican Dave Forsythe.
A visit by Koch will have more effect than other celebrity endorsers as the Mayor has the gravitas and stature to command coverage by the jaded MSM.
Koch’s Posters

Owens and Doheny Trade Barbs and Blows for an Hour

Matt Doheny mentioned Speaker Pelosi by name seemingly dozens of times while Rep. Bill Owens tweeked his GOP foe for allegedly flip flopping on privitization of Social Security.
On the pair went for an hour Thursday afternoon at the Arsenal Street studios of WPBS during a taping of Public Eye with Jeff Cole to be aired Friday night.
Media and operatives were at the closed event...I was neither but nobody saw me wander in.
Mr Doheny was aggressive but not overbearing...Mr. Owens was Congressional looking. I told him afterwards he should have be an anchorman and he seemed warm to the suggestion.
All in all it was a thorough discussion and worth watching.

Ritchie: Darrel Hangs With Really Bad People

Patty Ritchie is going for the jugular with her latest commercials that play the Espada card by noting that Senator Aubertine voted with the disgraced Majority Leader 95% of the time.
There are also lots of pictures of Mr. Aubertine juxtaposed to key Senate Democrats who in the ads happen to look like menacing "urban" men . There is also a NYC skyline superimposed. It is true that 25 of the 32 Senate Democrats are from the City of NY, and that it is a caucus skewed to the City....However, the Aubertine argument is that he helps moderate the majority and uses his leverage to get key items for NNY.
The downstate imagery is clear, and the question is in this Halloween season, how scared will voters be of the prospect that our Senator is one of "them"
It's classic us against them. Lets see if it works...

WDT: Sales Tax Up...And Why I Think It Must Be a Tax Universally Applied

The local retail economy continues to post solid numbers as reflected by sales tax revenues to local government. The figures for the summer quarter show Jefferson County up about 9% from last year in a continuation of recovery from the the falloff in 2008.
All of this is important as I often point out, sales tax is by far the largest single source of revenue in most municipalities. This is also why there was so much discussion the other night about policies to grant exemptions from sales tax for specific economic development projects like windmills, hotels or pretty much anything else where everything down to the pillows and bedding in a new hotel could be deemed exempt.
Sales tax is broad-based and often called regressive due to its flat application across all income levels.
However, its a way everyone participates, including visitors to the area. Our solid sales tax numbers are likely a result of visiting Canadians taking advantage of current monetary exchange rates.
We should not be exempting anyone from sales tax. The potential for abuse is huge and such exemptions clearly shift the burden of paying for police, firemen and teachers squarely on the backs of lower and middle class residents.
Those who advocate for the "middle class" and "working families" should seek to end these type of exemptions.
Watertown Daily Times Sales tax revenues up from last year

Hand Wringing Over Negative Campaigns Masks Uptick in Democracy

For all the talk of campaign finance reform and disclosure, its pretty much anything goes in the races for state and federal office...For the first time ever we have competitive races for Congress, State Senate and both local Assembly seats. Democracy is blooming despite all the yakking about the corrosive effects of big money and the use of anonymous vendors to spread vitriol about candidates.
I suspect voters are getting more sophisticated in sorting through the mail box and the phone calls.
Technologies allow campaigns to identify and track individual voters and shepherd them to the polls in ways that haven't been done since the old time ward healers kept tabs on their people.
I don't know if things are more or less negative and I am not sure if I care. I judge the material as it comes in and frankly have learned how to ignore.
The fact is, despite all the hand wringing about too much money in the process, we have all this democracy blooming in NNY. If the alternative is the old days of Matin, McHugh, Barclay, Wright or Nortz running unopposed or against an ill equipped placeholder...Well, I'll take the present with all its warts.
Campaign Wars: Negative politics isn’t new, but it’s never been quite like this

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Debates....Nah...Not for Us

I was watching YNN this evening and I saw Bill Carey hosting an in studio live debate between Rep. Dan Maffei of Syracuse and his GOP challenger Ann Marie Buerkle.
Imagine that...two candidates for high office in a studio together being interviewed by a veteran journalist...How unique...
Wonder if anyone up our way ever thought of doing that ?
Oh yeah they did...back when Ted Ford worked in TV...
Wonder what happened ?
(In fairness to Jeff Cole, who is trying to do this type of thing, there is a 30 minute debate being taped today for the NY23 candidates, But I don't when it airs...There is also a Senate session being taped tomorrow but it won't air for a week.)
Seems the four letter word in local media and political circles that is most obscene is "LIVE"

More of Carl's Emails....Just What We Need

This is why I just delete all the stupid jokes and other stuff people just keep forwarding...Who wants to be in the chain of custody by hitting the "forward to all" button on some joke or photo...
Some group called claims more evil e-mails with Carl Paladino in the address line....Enough already.
Just remember when this stuff comes to you...If you ever think you might be sued for divorce....or run for office...or be in a custody dispute...or are looking for a job....There are more than enough "friends" to forward the mailing list to a blog...or the MSM...
Carl Paladino sounded like a fool with his ranting in front of the Rabbis.......But what he and other Buffalo area lawyers and businessmen found entertaining a year ago is of no interest now.
Besides if Carl had wanted something spicy or erotic to look at, he should have just gone to a gay pride parade.
Paladino Porn «

Debate Details Made Public

Monday's gubernatorial debate at Hofstra University will be 90 minutes long with no commercial interuption. All seven candidates will be on stage and the debate will be aired on various cable networks across the state including YNN in the North Country. Public Radio will also carry it and details on streaming are in the attached press release.
This will likely be the sole debate of the campaign.
Oct 13 Final Debate Release

Dupre (Ashley not Janet) For Cuomo

Former Madam Kristin Davis may think she has the corner on sex workers, but not so.
Ashley Dupre has endorsed Andrew Cuomo for Governor.....The woman who serviced client #9 (Spitzer) while working for a rival escort service apparently likes to stick with Demcorats now that she knows politics a little better.
Ms. Dupre has gained respectability as a New York Post columnist since the Spitzer scandal broke. When she first dated Eliot, she claimed she didn't know he was the governor...Just a guy who kept his socks on !
Dupre For Cuomo

Gay Bashing Rabbi Pulls Support from Carl

The orthodox rabbi who got Carl Paladino in such a predicament over anti gay remarks has now pulled his support for Mr. Paladino, because the GOP is not radical enough. Under fire from everyone, Mr. P pulled back from remarks made Sunday at a Brooklyn synagogue.
For his pandering to extreme elements, Carl gets the rug pulled...Maybe he learned a lesson in politics.

Carl Paladino

WDT: New Poll Has Owens Up by 5

Pick your poll....A new Siena Poll has Bill Owens up 44-39 in NY23, while a GOP poll released last week showed Matt Doheny up by double digits.
Watertown Daily Times Siena: Owens leads narrowly with Hoffman out

Democratic Party No More...Now Its the Andrew Party

NY Post columnist Michael Goodwin pretty much concedes the Governor race to Andrew Cuomo in today's column. Mr. Goodwin muses about which Andrew we will get...the one talking about taking on the unions and special interests and reforming state and local government....Or will we get the one from his father's era and one who will make the WFP proud of their endorsement.
Mr. Cuomo has been receiving GOP endorsements and downplays the Democratic moniker in his campaign material.
He has given a defacto nod to Republican comptroller candidate Harry Wilson by refusing to back his own party's nominee.
Mr. Goodwin also says it's no secret Mr. Cuomo wants a Republican Senate to make it easier to implement his cost cutting measures....If true, that is not encouraging news to Sen. Darrel Aubertine,who by losing would be a big part of making that happen.

Another Undecided Republican

The DeDe wing of the Republican Party is not lining up to vote for Carl Paladino....Assemblywoman Teresa Sayward is among those equivocating over her party's gubernatorial nominee.
Ms Sayward was an early supporter last year of Diedre Scozzafava's bid for Congress.
So far, only Congressional candidate Matt Doheny has voiced support for Paladino among NNY candidates and even in his case he admits Carl is making it tougher and tougher to support him.
It will be interesting to see how much pro Paladino chatter there will be at Jefferson County's GOP dinner tomorrow night.
Another Undecided Republican

WDT: Patty a Dodger

As I said the other day, the Ritchie campaign wisely is pursuing a no-risk strategy of avoiding debates with Senator Darrel Aubertine, especially since even insiders in the Democratic Party concede the Cape Vincent lawmaker is facing defeat trying to defend the 48th district seat.
Ms. Ritchie will endure a little bad press like this story by Jude Seymour in the WDT, but the coverage will likely change few voters minds in the three county district spread over two media markets.
The Aubertine campaign has been calling for debates, perhaps a signal their own polling shows trouble.
The GOP has sought to frame the race in terms of asking voters to dump the Democratic majority, which has seen its share of dysfunction the past year or two, including the "coup" that led to Senator Pedro Espada's selection as Majority Leader.
Mr. Aubertine is thought to be most popular in Jefferson County, while Ms. Ritchie is popular in St. Lawrence County. The swing area is Oswego County where media chatter over debates is likely to not gain the attention of the population centers that depend on Central NY media.
With less than three weeks to the election, it will be easy for Ms. Ritchie to merely claim scheduling issues in denying future requests for debates.
Ms. Ritchie has for months been doing one on one campaigning for months in building what a recent poll showed to be a small lead for Ms. Ritchie.
Watertown Daily Times Ritchie campaign dodges debates

Owens Loves Boehner

Congressman Bill Owens loves Rep. John Boehner of Ohio....Or so it seems from listening to Owens latest ads....In an effort to ward off the pox of Nancy Pelosi, Mr. Owens is bragging about how many times he has voted with the GOP Minority Leader.
Meanwhile voters can decide if they want the Republican Matt Doheny or do they want GOP Lite in Bill Owens...Only problem is Mr. Owens voted for Democratic proposals like ObamaCare...That is not part of the 63% he voted with Boehner on....But who's counting....
Dem touts loyalty – to Boehner – CNN Political Ticker - Blogs

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

CNN Just Clocked Its Worst Primetime Ratings In 10 Years Thanks To Eliot Spitzer And Larry King

Bad Governor...Bad in bed...Bad on TV....Three Strikes and You're Out Eliot.
CNN Just Clocked Its Worst Primetime Ratings In 10 Years Thanks To Eliot Spitzer And Larry King

Paladino’s Apology

Carl Paladino has apologized over his poorly phrased remarks about gays. He has also pledged to fight for the rights of gays and all New Yorkers even though he does not support gay marriage per se.
There was a lot of confusion that surrounded the coverage of Paladino's visit to a Hasidic synagogue on Sunday and his clarifications will not suit the hard cores, but may strike a chord with those who find the subject tough to deal with at times.
In any event, good for him....Lets move on.
Paladino’s Apology

Hizzoner to Stump for Forsythe ?

Former NYC Mayor Ed Koch wants to come to NNY to campaign against Addie Russell......Russell opponent Dave Forsythe says he is a fan of Koch.
Koch contacted the GOP candidate yesterday and wants to rally in the 118th against Russell, who refused to sign Koch' New York Uprising pledge for political reform in Albany.
The pledge is about budget and ethical reform, term limits and non partisan redistricting.
"It's admirable a man who is retired and done his time would step forward to try and reform Albany...Hopefully Mayor Koch will be successful," Forsythe said during a visit today to Fort Pearl.
Ms. Russell has said she supports reform in the abstract, but is reluctant to sign specific pledges.

Political Stuff on a Tuesday

-For political junkies, Monday nights gubernatorial debate at Hofstra University on Long Island would be like Christmas in October....I was invited to attend the seven way debate.
As for the sure to watch Monday on YNN at 7 PM and cheer on your favorite.
-Addie Russell visited the HOTLINE today and declared herself a moderate...even though a tad liberal on some issues...The interview went well as did last Fridays with opponent Dave Forsythe.
-Green Party candidate for governor Howie Hawkins on Thursday and Libertarian candidate Warren Redlich on Friday as the HOTLINE meets its obligation to perform in the public interest, convenience and necesstity.
-A local Watertown business got an order for T-shirts from the Davis campaign. AVL Signs had designed the poster you have seen around town. Good to see a candidate who supports local businesses upstate. Ms. Davis has speaking engagements this weekend in Central NY

Third Party Mailing for Aubertine in the Mail Box Today

Senator Darrel Aubertine had a third party group based in Brooklyn mail on his behalf today.
"Education Reform Now" sent the latest slick showing cute kids dressed as policemen, firemen, nurses and doctors......This pre-Halloween mail touts Aubertine for increasing accountability in us better teachers.....and increasing funding for schools.
On the back side is a purported letter from students to Aubertine.
"We need more senators like you who are willing to put what's right ahead of what's politically easy," reads the prose from these obviously literate youngsters.

Stone Raps Dicker

Fred Dicker is one of those journalists people are scared of. Not so with consultant Roger Stone who took a swipe at Fred today, calling the 69 year old NY Post State Editor a declining force in the news business. Of course, Stone had made the news this week for a tax lien reported by, among others, Dicker.
Given the recent Dicker Dust Up, its interesting to hear opinions on the journalist who two weeks ago moved from covering the news to being the news.
Roger Stone: The Stone Zone

AP: Paladino- "I'll Hire Gays"

What he really said and really believes is coming out, and without spending money on commercials Carl Paladino is getting publicity. I doubt those guys in Speedos in the gay pride parades were planning on voting for Carl anyway.
GOP guv hopeful Paladino: 'I'll hire gays' -

'Crazy Carl' Paladino blames furor over his anti-gay remarks on rival for governor Andrew Cuomo

The headline in this Daily News story says it all....The continued reference to "Crazy Carl" helps frame the candidate who seemingly cannot stay out of controversy...He is outspoken....but when you read his remarks on Gay Gate, his views seem consistent with with many people struggling to be tolerant and inclusive, while dealing with people who are very in-your-face about lifestyle.
The media's use of the word "dysfunctional", even though the candidate never uttered it, was an example of the operatives gaming the media and getting their way.
Paladino has brought some of the furor on himself, but I think Dems have so framed Paladino's as a nut that it will be tough to recover...With no television ads to be seen, I wonder if Paladino has read the tea leaves and doesn't want to squander the family fortune much further.
At this point the next milestone in the race is next Monday's seven way debate..
Pretty much all Mr. Cuomo has to do is be affable and repeat his talking points. It is clear the Paladino camp would like an eruption from the reportedly volatile Cuomo, but its hard to imagine a pro like Andrew taking that bait.
For Paladino to attack on Monday would only reenforce the perception. He needs to be calm, witty and informed. I don't know if he is up to the task.....I know I will be watching.
'Crazy Carl' Paladino blames furor over his anti-gay remarks on rival for governor Andrew Cuomo

You Can't Blame Him for Asking But There's No Way Patty Debates

Another take on the SD48 race....The other day an Aubertine supporter said to me, "you have to call Patty out."
Me ? Not my job....If she won't debate or be interviewed, its likely good strategy.
By ducking debates you antagonize the insiders...the operatives and a few media wags who fancy themselves on a panel of questioners. (There is one closed to the public, taped debate this Friday on WPBS)
The vast majority of voters who will show up on Nov. 2 do not care about the debate game. They have likely already decided and one assumes the polls are not in the incumbents favor.
Ducking debates will cost few votes and participating will gain few...But by participating you risk either a mistake or the revelation that you are not that conversant on issues.
The GOP strategy is to elect a Republican placeholder...They can fill in the blanks later,
Patty Ritchie is playing to her strength....Personal campaigning, lots of ads and an electorate angry at the Democrats in Albany, even if they like the Democrat in Cape Vincent.
There is absolutely no reason for her to debate.

Monday, October 11, 2010

WDT: Ritchie wants outside help to stop (updated)

Those direct mail pieces out of Virginia continue assailing Senator Darrel Aubertine and praising challenger Patty Ritchie...They are boiler plate glossies sent to all close State Senate districts, except the names are changed.
Candidate Ritchie tells the WDT she has no idea who is sending them, althought their presence is a huge defacto contribution to her campaign.....
I am sorry...there is no such thing as anonymous, unsolicited mailings on this level. Its orchestrated. That's not bad, but we live in a system where voters expect to know who is contributing to each campaign.
This effort circumvents the process, and the candidates claim of ignorance on the source is not convincing.
Nor is the evasion of public forums by the Ritchie campaign....Now I realize these tactics would be done by the Dems if they were in the same situation.....Mrs. Ritchie is hoping to run out the clock as she perceives she is ahead. I would too.
Watertown Daily Times Ritchie wants outside help to stop (updated)

Howie Wants an E-Board Meeting

A staffer for Green Party Gubernatorial candidate Howie Hawkins of Syracuse emailed me today to ask if his guy could be on America's Favorite Noontime Talk Show aka the HOTLINE.
I checked with the boss who told me to send letters to the other candidates offering equal opportunity. Then I booked Mr. Hawkins for Thursday..I interviewed Howie once before in a previous race and found him to be a committed and informed leftist and a nice guy. Can't vote for him but I am glad to have him on.
The clincher was when his rep, Mark Dunlea, told me he was in Watertown that day and hoped to get an editorial board meeting.....I didn't have the heart to tell him what grief that will be.
For the record, I didn't give him any encouragement and suggested his prospects were negligable after Kristin Davis was apparently denied a meeting due to her lack of viability.
Howie's campaign is the same as Kristin as it is an effort to get 50,000 votes and establish a new ballot line for the Greens.
I just know in radio we take all comers...even the Rent's 2 Damn High Party candidate if he chooses to come on.

GOP Senate Hopefuls Distance Themselves From Paladino..Wassup Patty ?

Let's see....If GOP Senate hopefuls are fleeing their gubernatorial candidate, where does that leave Patty Ritchie, who was one of only a couple of GOP candidates who took the time to petition to get on Paladino's Taxpayer Party line.
Since no one interviews Patty, it's hard to know....I guess if I had a shot at her and Aubertine, I would press her on Paladino and ask Darrel why he voted for Espada as Majority Leader...That explains why no HOTLINE appearance for those two.
In fact, I hear it was like pulling teeth to get Patty to tape Jeff Cole's PBS show with Aubertine....That gets done Friday and won't be aired for a week...
So much for immediacy of broadcast media.
Anyway, with everyone scampering away from Carl, is anyone asking what the local GOP brain trust is thinking...They are having a dinner on Thursday that Paladino is invited to...Might be a great chance to ask....
GOP Senate Hopefuls Distance Themselves From Paladino

Schumer: Soldiers Losing Their Vote is Wrong

This is another of those examples of the reason people have no confidence in elections and think the fix is in......Soldiers overseas missing the chance to vote again this year because our decades old system of depending on the mail and the bureaucrats.
Surely deployed soldiers and citizens overseas should be able to vote through some methodology. How about everytime there are machine problems or musical polling places, and we hear that everything is fine....Fine for who.
Senator Schumer is right...This is an atrocity.
Sen. Charles Schumer

The Feigned Outrage Factory is in Full Production After Carl's Gay Remarks

Democrats and the media are having a field day ripping at Carl Paladino over his gay remarks in Brooklyn....In particular Mr.Paladino is upset over those gay pride parades where people dress and behave in a very provocative ways. In fact there was an example of such garb on Paladino's blog today and even in reproducing it, Liz had to censor it....Paladino says he wouldn't want kids to see this type of display...Is he wrong ?
Mr. Paladino says he has a live and let live attitude towards gays and has condemned discrimination. He says he opposes same sex marriage and has the same difficulties discussing the issues many have.
But gayness is one of those third-rail issues these days....Gay is the new black in the Democratic and media circles...
Besides...Jerry Brown's wife called GOP candidate Meg Whitman a "whore" in a phone call that was recorded....No outrage over that.
Mr. Paladino is guilty of saying things many people think but don't dare utter...He also has a discipline problem and cannot stay on message...The message is jobs, taxation and dysfunction in Albany.
Paladino’s Pride Parade Blog (Updated)


Whatever he did or didn't say in Brooklyn over the weekend, Carl Paladino is now in a shouting match with the left over gay rights and gay marriage.
In particular the Gay Rights Day Parade, which the Buffalo businessman calls "disgusting."
One parade that is not disgusting is the Columbus Day Parade in NYC which he is participating in today.
State of Politics Blog

How Carl Paladino built his Rite Aid empire in Syracuse |

Carl Paladino has been very successful as a businessman, which is his biggest selling point. He is not a "career politician."
His years in real estate and property development has left a record of its own and the Syracuse P/S does a nice summary of his work in the Salt City.
How Carl Paladino built his Rite Aid empire in Syracuse

With the Top Race Decided, Insiders Look at the Under Card Bouts

Despite upstate rage, Carl Paladino continues to worry Republicans who for the record say he is exciting voters and will increase turnout upstate.
Three months ago, GOP leaders had to worry about the lackluster Lazio acting as an anchor dragging down other candidates on the line. At first, Carl Paladino seemed the type to energize the base, even though his prospects for beating Andrew Cuomo statewide have never been great.
Now Paladino's continued faux pas on the trail are creating worry, and that may be good news for Democrats in NNY trying to hold on against the tide that threatens to sweep them away.
Others watching the wobbly top of the GOP ticket are the poobahs of the minor parties....The existing minor parties on lines C, D and E were closely bunched four years ago with the Indy's holding the C line. This year they hope Mr. Cuomo will draw them enough votes to stay there. There is reason to think that will happen, although the WFP has the ability to order unions and others to get their members to vote for Cuomo on their line.
Conservatives are likely saved from extinction with Paladino on the line, but will not take the C position.
Mr. Paladino's Taxpayer Party line a month ago was poised to replace the Conservatives, but now will likely have trouble getting to 50,000.
The other five would-be parties see their prospects rise in a non competitive race to win the governorship.
I love the name "Rent's 2 Damn High" party, but I don't see Jimmy McMillan getting much over 10-15 K.
The Liberatarian party's Warren Redlich has no draw and Councilman Barren's Freedom line will not be able to peel enough black voters away from Cuomo to create a separate line for minority candidates.
That leaves the Green Party's Howie Hawkins....Hawkins is smart and well known among the left and the party has a marketable name. I think he has a shot at 50,000.
The Anti Prohibition Party is the other libertarian effort with a more appealing candidate in Kristin Davis. Her celebrity, sprinkled with some infamy, has a good chance at drawing the 50K, and more if she excels in the debate and a press tired of Paladino gives some due to the minor party candidates. She also has Roger Stone advising her which is pretty high speed for a minor party.
I think the IP and the WFP fight it out for Lines C and D, while the Conservatives and APP fight for E and F....Give the Greens line G and the others are gone for this year. There will be 4.5 M votes cast so 1.2% gets you to 50K.
A parlor game you say....Yes it is, but trust me this is the kind of stuff operatives talk about.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Carl Paladino in blast at gays: 'Nothing to be proud of in being a dysfunctional homosexual'

UPDATE- NYDN now reports Paladino never uttered the word "dysfunctional."
Chalk up another media favorite group that Carl Paladino has antagonized...This time its gays...Mr. P.told a gathering of ultra orthodox Hasidic Jews that not only would he veto a gay marriage bill, but that Andrew Cuomo should not have allowed his daughters to march with him in the Gay Pride Parade. And he said children need not be brainwashed in school to believe a homosexual lifestyle is OK.
All of this prompts the reflexive charge of being homophobic from the Cuomo camp.
If Carl is looking for friends in the City, he needs to go beyond one religious sect whose leadership happens to share with Mr. Paladino a revulsion and contempt for Speaker Silver.
The red meat thrown so easily in such settings doesn't help Paladino get elected, and the Cuomo-centric media will be looking for every incendiary quote to reenforce the popular perception that Mr. Paladino is incapable of governing.
Now the Gay Pride Parade is something of a affront to those who want their gays more in the background,but whether Mr.Cuomo takes his daughters with him to march is his decision as a parent.
This guy has so squandered the centrist anger he tapped into in the GOP primary. I say he loses by 18.
Carl Paladino in blast at gays: 'Nothing to be proud of in being a dysfunctional homosexual'

Sunday Musings

-Addie Russell will be the guest on the HOTLINE this Tuesday. Thanks to her and Dave Forsythe for their willingness to be on live radio. Kudos also to the Sheriff candidates.
I don't think a radio interview affects that many votes but its nice to give people a chance to hear these folks.
A live show like this would be a great chance for candidates who say they want debates (Darrel) and for candidates who insist they are not hiding (Patty). But realistically I don't expect any more candidates. We will see what happens.
-This is also a week when the ribbon is cut on the $60M+ Samaritan Medical Center remake. That should be quite an addition to the City.
-Tuesday night City Council discusses the proposed uniform PILOT proposed by the county IDA. Last week West Carthage Mayor Scott Burto and Champion Supervisor Terry Buckley spoke out strongly against the proposal.
-Rep. Owens must be worried. He is blanketing Sunday football with commercials about Doheny being a foreign banker...A sort of Manchurian candidate from Alexandria Bay.....Pretty lame.

'SNL' hits O'Donnell again

Not since witches were burned at the stake has there been such media interest in witchcraft as there is in the Delaware Senate race where Christine O'Donnell has had to disavow a decade old statement about dabbling in witchcraft as a teen.
The MSM and their entertainment cohorts are in full court press to defeat the 41year old single, childless lawyer who had trouble paying off student loans and once had a home once in foreclosure.
Feminism be damned...The left has gathered in Salem for some serious business. This witch must burn.
'SNL' hits O'Donnell again - The Associated Press -

Candidates Wrapped in Plastic So They Won't Have to Touch the Great Unwashed

When do we get to meet any of these candidates for statewide office ? I realize the North Country doesn't have the population of the metro areas in the state, but we are one of ten or so media markets served by a common set of print, Internet and broadcast media.
Yet so far this year, there have been few public events where folks can see or hear these candidates.
I am not talking about closed door pow wows with party bosses. Gone are the days of public rallies, where anyone can go see a candidate.
A month or so LG candidate Bob Duffy was in Watertown, and local Dem leaders told me they wanted to keep his visit quiet. Carl Paladino was in town last month, but made no public appearances. The comptroller candidates and the AG hopefuls are MIA too. Senator Gillibrand was in town the other day for an invitation only business roundtable. A GOP bus was in town Friday and the only person on it was Richard Nixon's son in law.
In 1964, the late Robert Kennedy came to town running for Senate and the crowd downtown was huge. Granted the circumstances were different and nowadays a candidate or a circus coming to town doesn't draw a crowd.
Call me old fashioned , but I still enjoy a rally or stump speech. Heck, when I was 17 , a couple of friends and I went to the big hall at the Fairgrounds in Syracuse to see Spiro Agnew. There were a ton of people.
There still is something to that bromide about "asking me for my vote."
I don't think Watertown or NNY is being singled out for neglect. I am sure Elmira, Plattsburgh, Poughkeepsie and Oneonta get the same treatment.
We are just not stops on the political train anymore.
Schneiderman In Rochester

Silver, Sampson to Dem candidates: Hit ‘em on Carl - Capitol Confidential

The Democratic legislative leadership wants the party's candidates statewide to use Carl Paladino as a rallying cry to defeat other GOP officeholders.
Sheldon Silver and John Sampson both come from districts that are lopsided for the Dems. In the case of Senate leader Sampson he has 145,000 Democrats and 8,000 Republicans in his district in NYC.
Pretty easy to offer advice in that environment...But what if you are Darrel Aubertine with 49,000 Dems and 75,000 Republicans. And you have a gubernatorial candidate in Andrew Cuomo who says there is no place for Tea Party politics in NY.....NO place?
You won't see Darrel denouncing Paladino, because he likely agrees with him. I am virtually certain he voted for McCain in '08.
The Democratic high command doesn't see past the five boroughs where a turnip could get elected to the Assembly on the Dem line. Any upstate Dem who denounces Paladino just to be a good soldier does so at their own peril.
Silver, Sampson to Dem candidates: Hit ‘em on Carl - Capitol Confidential