Wednesday, November 7, 2012

When You Peel It All Away.....Politically, It's No Longer Your Father's North Country

    In the end it was closer than polls weeks ago had suggested and a frantic campaign schedule and relentless ad buys surely helped.
    Matt Doheny knows process in politics. He knows voting records, demographics, historic trends, polling, focus groups, issues to hit and ones to avoid.  He ran his own campaign instead of being just the candidate...the nice guy...the visionary...
    He knew the issues, but intellectually had trouble being the political glad hander...the guy who could talk the 'middle class' rhetoric baked into the cake of todays political dialogue. He was a guy who didn't believe in "free shit" in an occupation built on promising just that.
     While his own life story became an issue whether fairly or not, it was naive to think the Dems wouldn't use his islands and opulence as a club, even if he personally didn't live the life of a dainty, pinky-in-the-air, effete rich guy.
       In the end Mr Doheny recognized a central flaw in his theory of the race...That is that its a GOP area and his victory would be merely a "reversion to the mean."
        "Just to be intellectually honest, which I have always been, and that’s part of why I’m a Republican and running for Congress, if you look at the results today, I don’t know how Republican this 21st Congressional District is anymore," Mr Doheny said last night.
       A moment of clarity for sure about a race we are all glad is over.
NY21: Doheny hustle falls short | NCPR News


Anonymous said...

Let's be clear this is not a GOP or Dem issue. Rich people are difficult to market and easy to define and pummel them until they are drowned out and can't effectively deliver their message.

Romney, Doheny, Barclay Lad

Need we say anymore?

Anonymous said...

I think since the race is over and you can get back to being Mayor, the City should save the money on killing the crows and you and Duff can now eat them.

Anonymous said...

You said the magic words to his defeat mayor.. Free shit as you put it is a copeout..
Dohenys personal belief reflect what type of politican he is and person he alway will be.. Selfish and selfserving.. The man is sucessful but at costs.. Those costs are why our government gives free shit as you put it.. Unemployed people deserve jobs, no watching their jobs get outscoursed over seas.. They want jobs, not lay off slips while their bosses get six and seven million dollar bonus at their expense..
Even Patty Ritchie began to feel his weight on her campaign as she tried valantly to save him from defeat. She tirelessy campaigned for him even though she dosnt share his values in life. He supported DeDe Scoz four years ago but when she did the right thing she scorned her.. His contributions to DeDes election are a matter of record yet he denies supporting her... People see through the veil of decete he has..
I for one do not believe we heard the lasst from him however.. When Patty trys to get the Republicans behind her for Congress he will surface again in some manner..
His statement about the 21st no longer being Republcian is true.. Now voters in the 21st elect the best people for the job....

Anonymous said...

I think the area is still republican, the problem was that people just didn't like Doheny, the person. Everyone knows that the presidential race in New York State was sewn up before a single vote was cast yesterday. I know a lot of republican voters who didn't vote yesterday because they knew their Romney vote wouldn't matter and they didn't like the republican congressional option, Matt Doheny. If a less controversial, less scandal-plagued republican candidate had been running I can say with certainty that there would have been more registered republicans at the polls, resulting in more votes for Romney and more votes for the republican candidate for congress. For the record, I completely disagree with this approach and think everyone should vote, but there is no doubt that the dislike for Doheny amongst republicans kept them from the polls. I think the republicans could get the seat back in 2014 with a different candidate.

Anonymous said...

Matt had an option he turned from. He could have gone Carl Palidino on Owens and hired his henchman Caputo or mentor Roger Stone. He did not want to win that way, he choose to win with hard work, a mistake? I do not think so he lost with his values not by hiring the dirty tricksters. I respect Matt the more I get to know him.

Anonymous said...

exactly..well Owens can now go back to Washington and Albany and Plattsburgh or wherever,and Jeff Co. won't have any idea who he is,till next election season..

Anonymous said...

My father's North Country elected moderate Republicans with 75% of the vote. My father would have seen Eric Cantor, Grover Norquist, Mitch McConnell, Karl Rove,and Rush Limbaugh as "kooks".

The really sad part is how things have changed so much. In my father's time, when Beirut was attacked during the Reagan Administration, Tip O'Neill called in the Democratic Caucus the next morning and said something like: " Our country has been attacked, and we will stand together. Anyone who criticizes the Reagan Administration on how they handle this will not have to deal with Reagan. He will have to deal with me."

Ask: How did the Republicans handle the attack on Libya? Now, you have the answer to the the question of why Doheny was not elected. He lined up with Cantor and Issa, and They ARE NOT our kind of people.

Yeah, I would like to go back to GOP Congressmen like Mc Ewen, Martin and McHugh. They knew how to compromise and get things done. The only guy who ran this time who was closest to being a Moderate Republican was Owens, and that's why he won.

Anonymous said...

"whether fairly or not"

This is not about fairness,Doheny brought that on him self, that his private life was an issue in the election.
By having a luxourious wedding during his champaign,
by letting his mother filming adds for him.
And Iam sure she is not depending on social security with a Millionaere son like him.
So people saw through the fake of this add,
by mentioning his upbringing and his family every time he spoke in the politcal meetings against Owens.
But upringing and then leaving as a college student and come back 22 years later does not consist for me as living in the North country.
The last 20 years so much change happenend here, just look around Watertown and Fort Drum.

Owens to the contronaery kept his family live and his wife out of the champain, so fare I know and he raist his family here and build his business here.

In the end it all comes down do it, that Doheny had no real concept for this area.
People also saw through, that he will not be representing them, but NYC and Wallstreet, thats where most of the donations for his champain came from anyway.

Anonymous said...

I think doheny is going to be so bored with life now. He is done will wall street, done building his island complex and done with politics. I imagine he woke up this morning wondering what on earth he was going to do now. It is hard to go 100 miles per hour 7 days a week for three years then all the sudden do absolutely nothing. I imagine failure is not something he accepts graciously. I can't imagine him being satisfied sitting in Watertown with his wife all day every day going forward. Now he's just another guy in the north country who will have to be content watching the parades go by instead of marching in them. It must seem like his whole "life" has ended. I hope he is ok.

CR said...

Or the old saying still holds in this burg...

"Nice guys finish last!".

Sad, but maybe true.

Anonymous said...

What a bunch of crap. It is the negative class warfare stuff that the democrats used to scare the voters from the President to Owens. America was built on a hard work ethic. It meant that some people succeeded others failed to try again. One was not scorned for doing well.

Doheny's concepts were as well defined and or better than Owens.
We can say Owens bought the election by saying that he gave them free health care at a economic cost that will devastate the economy and end in rationing of health care. We can say Owens goal was to make health care a govt arm to control the people and make them dependent on govt.

Truth is that may happen but Owens motive was not evil. You hate mongers have to lay off

Anonymous said...

2:08- that is such a great point. With the exception of posting his wedding picture on his website (which was very weird) Owens never really mentioned his family and his wife most certainly was not out campaigning on her own. The Doheny camp jammed his new wife down our throats and it fell very flat. Many thought the whole wedding was ridiculous and the marriage was more political then anything else (especially after the DC incident). Trying to position Doheny as a loving family man was a big mistake. Nobody bought it. He didn't have that distraction in 2010 and he was much better received.

Anonymous said...

One out of two ain't bad 2:27Pm. Doheny isn't nice but he sure is last. And I really hope it's the last we hear from him.

Anonymous said...

That must have been some strong Kool Aid you drank if you are just now coming to realize that North Country no longer votes blindly Republican. The times have changed.

Anonymous said...

Matt would have been the best guy for the job. Romney would have been the best guy for the job. The North Country has such a lack-mentality that it likes to see "rich" people fall. Matt has got more brains, balls and money (as a measurement of his hard work and success) than anyone else in town and it drives most of them crazy by reminding them of their own failures - or lack of even trying. Everyone should work honestly to be "rich" and be happy with their best efforts. Much better path than being fat or lazy or on a scam disability or on a government handout. Socialists, finger pointers, complainers and blamers get what you think about and ask for. Congrats.

Anonymous said...

nO CR its the creame rises to the top thats the saying and it is true..

Anonymous said...

Romney was wrong about the 47% that would never vote for him. It is actually 52% - and they want to be parasites that live off the other 48% -honest, hardworking and so-called rich.

Anonymous said...

Can you help 2:08 with his spelling

Anonymous said...

"Yeah, I would like to go back to GOP Congressmen like Mc Ewen, Martin and McHugh. They knew how to compromise and get things done. The only guy who ran this time who was closest to being a Moderate Republican was Owens, and that's why he won."

Great points. The GOP has allowed itself to be hijacked by the extremist Tea Partiers. Many party leaders cow-tow to this small but noisy group because they fear for their political lives. They are cowards for not standing up to such bullies--who represent a shrinking number of citizens. Owens came across as more moderate and more even-keeled, even if you disagree with him on issues, and that's why the majority in the NC backed him. It's a changing electorate and if the GOP doesn't change too, maintaining its core values while reaching out with TRUE conviction to young voters (and not just young white male gun-owners) the party will disappear. There are no honorable statesmen left. Bush is so unpopular they didn't even ask him to stump, Romney and McCain and Gingrich have all tried to take the reigns and failed, and so the party is leaderless. It's hope lies in young, centrist, inclusive leaders who can truly relate to a LARGE number of voters across racial, gender, and economic divides.

Anonymous said...

But you all forget that Owens is also the one who stated that his constituents didn't know enough to know what's good for them. So I guess he thinks we're all illiterate

Anonymous said...

“Dohenys personal belief reflect what type of politican he is and person he alway will be.. Selfish and selfserving.. The man is sucessful but at costs.”

Exactly 11:17am, and that is why the mayor was hoping to ride his coat tails. These guys just don’t get it and never will. That is why they are quickly becoming less relevant than dinosaur dung… as it should be.

Anonymous said...

Seriously??? Matt has "no real concept" for this area? He lost because he has money, he got married and he let his Mom film ads??? No wonder he lost with that kind of mentality, or lack thereof.

Let me tell you something about Matt. I graduated a year behind him in school with his brother Mark and remember him well. Matt was a good student and participated in sports and the student government. He wasn't one of the mean kids, he wasn't one of the "uppity" kids. He didn't come from a family with a whole lot of money. Matt worked his butt off, got his degree and went to work. Matt made his money......Matt decided, after much debate I am sure, to run for Congress to make a difference. He could see that we need a change because things just aren't working. So, he decided to make his life public and see if he could make that change. Matt did what most of us will never do, he ran for office TWICE.

Saying that Matt has no concept for this area is completely insane. I've lived in this area for 40 years and couldn't point out Bill Owens in a line up. I've never seen the man. Matt was EVERYWHERE and no candidate for ANY office worked harder than Matt. He visited businesses, volunteer fire departments, hell, he even stood out on the street greeting people, yet he has no concept for this area? I'm pretty sure Bill Owens wouldn't know where half the places were that Matt WENT without the help of a map.

Matt did one thing Bill Owens didn't do....he ran a CLEAN campaign. He didn't dig up dirt and throw it in our faces not once but twice. Owens made it a point to make Matt look like the big bad wolf. Owens didn't have a single commercial that wasn't a personal slam to Matt. So what that Matt has a lot of money? So what that Matt is fortunate enough to have a home on the river? So what that Matt worked on Wall Street? Maybe if people had looked closer at Matt instead of letting the ads color their vision, they would have seen that Matt could use his Wall Street experience in Washington. Maybe they would have realized that "hey, here's a kid who was living the life in NY City but came back home and set down roots". And as for calling the ads with his Mom fake......I DARE you to set foot in Alex Bay and say that......the woman is a class act.

Maybe if a few more people got to know Matt Doheny, instead of Owens version of Matt Doheny, they wouldn't have let Owens bias and jealousy cloud their judgement and the outcome may have been very different. We won't know now, will we? I sincerely hope that Matt doesn't throw in the towel and not run again because I think it would be a real loss to this area. 3rd times the charm, Matt!

Anonymous said...

Does it really matter who is in office, no matter what office? Very few people in office can or will tackle problems put to them by people needing help with the system, the elected and appointed people benefit from. Thats just the way it is. Yeah some bacon is fried and sent home, but for many people , their own specific problems and issues need addressing, not the big picture. So the status quo usually remains, no matter who is elected. The days of government as Lincoln stated so greatly, have been over for some time.

Anonymous said...

It obviously didn't impact the outcome but I think the Doheny's might have wanted to have changed up their wardrobe a little from the primary night...right down to the jewelry and everything. Identical. I know it sounds silly, but people notice the attire of the first ladies and this could have been one of the biggest nights of Matt's life. I just thought it was strange to wear the exact same thing.

Anonymous said...

Judging from the quality of comments posted here and elsewhere about the internet, going back to formal literacy tests (in english) at the polls would straighten things out nicely. Should people incapable of attaining reading, writing and critical thinking skills beyond that befitting a fifth-grader really be deciding the fate of the rest of us? I realize they just want their fair share of free shit, but it is only free if somebody else pays for it.

Anonymous said...

Mayor, you were right to show the island photos. They invited you knowing you are a blogger and shutterbug. I enjoyed seeing how the other 1% lives.
I really doubt a couple of snapshots cost him the race, unless that was you in the chopper overhead.

Anonymous said...

8:27- that was a really nice post. It made me smile and reminded how few and far between nice thoughts and compliments are on these blogs. I agree with you on many points (and not so much on others).

Matt's mom is a class act. Check. She is a smart independent woman and has served as a heavy influence in Matt's life. No argument there.

Throughout his life, including this campaign, Matt has worked his butt off. Check. No debate there at all.

People shouldn't hold Matt's money against him. Check. Doing that is just anti-American, whether you made your money in corn fields or on wall street.

Matt should be commended for sacrificing his privacy to run for office. Check. It's a big ask and most people wouldn't do it. Even fewer would sacrifice a multi-million dollar salary to do it. Hats off to Matt for his commitment.

Now, the "not so much" part...Matt running a clean campaign? I don't think I can give you that one. This was an ugly campaign on both sides. I don't think either side can claim a clean campaign. In fact, Owens could have been even dirtier but thankfully it didn't get THAT bad. I never saw an ad this election mentioning Matt's BWIs or the DC incident. Those were both low hanging fruit in the land of dirty campaigns and thankfully he didn't go there. But I did see negative ads on both sides so I don't think either can claim a clean run (if I ever hear the voice of the woman who did all of Doheny's attack ads against Owens I might throw my TV out the window!)

People don't like Matt because they simply don't know him or are jealous? Maybe in some cases, but in many cases that wasn't the case. In fact, I think this is the part where Doheny's campaign fell short. I know Matt too and while he can be charismatic at times, he can also be condescending, unwaveringly stubborn, overly aggressive and probably more than anything else, really really insincere and fake. It's funny too because that is his biggest pet peeve in people and I have seen that trait in him more and more over the last few years. On top of the voters, these personality issues are likely why he had so much trouble with his campaign staff, as an example. That is also the issue most people had with the quick (and very showy) engagement and marriage. It seemed like a campaign event masquerading as something else, which was particularly tough for some as marriage is a highly valued institution by many and should always be done thoughtfully and tastefully with no outside motivations. So with people questioning his sincerity about episodes in his personal and professional life they naturally hesitated that much more when considering these traits for their congressman.

There is no doubt Doheny is a hard worker who sacrificed a lot for his campaigns. He did an unbelievable job of establishing a presence across the entire massive district and I am sure his commitment frightened (and exhausted) Owens. But at the end of the day, Matt's personal life and mannerisms with others really damaged his popularity and credibility.

All of that being said, your post was really nice and much appreciated amongst the usual sea of negativity. I hope Matt (or Matt's mom) read it. I can only imagine how damaging this whole process has been to him. I don't understand how so many people can take such pleasure in the misery of others. Thank you for the positive post.

Anonymous said...

@7:29 PM

Sorry for my bad spelling.
English is not my first language and on top of it I was in a hurry.

I am also not aware of checkspelling in the blogger section.

Yes sometimes I could use some help with my spelling. :)

Anonymous said...

8:42 - it's been clear from the beginning that people weren't going to be running to the stores to copy the outfits worn by anyone during this campaign, a la the early years of Michelle Obama or Kate Middleton. That was the best part of the Cuomo campaign, catching a glimpse of Sandra Lee every now and then!

Anonymous said...

8:27- I think if Matt actually does something for the local area between now and 2014 I too would like to see him run again. All he has really done since moving here is campaign. I know he started North Country Capital but I don't know of any local companies he has invested in. There are a lot of ways someone can serve. If not politics, what about charity work? I think if he expanded his role in NNY beyond just campaigning people might doubt his motivations of running for office a whole lot less.

Mike Flynn 'Middle Class Mike' said...

"I believe in a Social Safety Net" stated Matt Doheny at JCC debate and I'm still laughing out loud. He didn't to any real degree, but in the future Republicans looking to win office will need to!

Mike Flynn 'Middle Class Mike'

Anonymous said...

11- these people were on the road so much they didn't even seem to have time to take a shower half the time. Shopping for decent clothes was most definitely not on the to do list.

Anonymous said...

Mr Doheny will NEED to demonstrate ACTION for this north country in specific terms by either VOLUNTEERING or serving on some community or regional action groups that benefit the population of the region .

These actions would demonstrate his SINCERITY and far out weigh his money or his rhetoric. Show us Matt by your willingness to actually serve your fellow man in the trenches before you try to ascend to the top

Anonymous said...

"I know Matt too and while he can be charismatic at times, he can also be condescending, unwaveringly stubborn, overly aggressive and probably more than anything else, really really insincere and fake."

This was the impression I got as well. He came across as having an arrogance that turned some people off, fair or not.

As for running a clean campaign, that's pretty funny. Did you not watch TV? There was plenty of mudslinging on both sides.

One last point: "Matt has got more brains, balls and money (as a measurement of his hard work and success)..." Yes, he's smart, but balls? Yeah, okay -- he put himself out there. I'll give that to anyone who runs for office. As for one's wealth being a measure of a great American, that's exactly the narrow mentality that divides us. How many of us know folks who've worked their asses off and still struggle? Because they aren't super-rich, it's some fault of their own? That's b.s. And there are lots of rich people who simply get lucky or who get rich from doing something that's less than honorable. Not saying that is MD's case, but to assume that he's somehow more 'hard-working' than those with less money is...well, condescending. Which brings us back to the original point.

Anonymous said...

10:46 & 9:58- I totally agree. I was a bit surprised by the claim of a clean campaign too. This was one of the most negative campaigns I can remember. I also agree that making money and working hard do not run on parallel paths. I have no idea how or why Doheny made the money he made but I agree. Think of the firefighters, police or even doctors who save lives and will never see that kind of money. Kudos to Doheny for finding a path to wealth but I agree with the statement that all is says is that he had a big paycheck. Nothing more, nothing less.

Idi Amin Duda said...

Here's one that makes me wonder. Why was old crazy Doug allowed to run the streets since 2010 by the police when in that year he was under investagation for Stalking A Governmnet Worker? Anyone else would have been in the Booby-Hatch long before 2012. What was up with that?

Anonymous said...

Simply put.. Doheny worked hard and traveled for a year campaigning.. He has the resources.. He paid for a lot of advertising He has the resources. He paid a large group of workers to help him.. He had the resources.. He worked on this campaign daily.. He had the resources... He got those rescources on the back of laid off and displaced American workers and he enjoyed it... He sent jobs overseas and he enjoyed it... Remember what goes around came around in the end. Now he got displaced..

Anonymous said...

8:40- the shower comment made me laugh. Yes, that did not go unnoticed with one prominent campaigner in particular. I hear women aren't supposed to wash their hair every day but once a week would sure be nice!

Anonymous said...

Two minute's research would have let Doheny know that NY-21 is not Republican-dominated. Republicans make up just under 44% of the electorate, while Democrats make up just under 30%. The wild card is the other/independent voters, which at almost 27% make up a substantial bloc, a bloc that Matt almost completely ignored with his Tea Party rhetoric. By adopting a platform designed to go after Conservatives/Republicans, believing they were the "majority", Doheny lost an election in which, if he had been even reasonably moderate, was his for the taking.

Dan Francis said...

It is apparent to me just listening and reading GOP/rightie comments that they lost and their new focus is an old tactic that started hardcore in 1994 - the Hotline and Curry have really turned ugly on this topic:

"Hit the less-fortunate: people on food stamps, the homeless, the hungry, and anyone living in or below the poverty level that either getting or needfs any form of government aid, assistance, or temporary help."

It is coming full circle and full bore - get ready. That is how shallow the GOP has sunk to once again (or maybe they have always been that low).

So, cut, reduce, eliminate, or just slash which ones?

529 or Coverdell Education Program
Home Mortgage Interest Deduction
Hope or Lifetime Learning Tax Credit
Student Loans
Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit
Earned Income Tax Credit
Social Security
Pell Grants
Unemployment Insurance Benefits
Veteran’s Benefits
G.I. Bill
Head Start
Social Security Disability
SSI (Supplemental Security Income)
Subsidized Housing
Public Assistance
Food Stamps

Anonymous said...

8:27 - I like your post as well but also agree with the other posters who think that getting to know the real Matt was actually the problem. Look at the numbers...Matt did a lot better in the new part of the district that didn't know him as well. The people who knew him the best decided to go the other way.

Anonymous said...

11:16 - I know, right? You would think with all the photos being taken and posted that there would plenty of opportunities for said "campaigner" to reevaluate the frequency of bathing and adjust it some. Oh well, at least it is over.

Anonymous said...

There you go again Dan, making sense. No wonder the TeaPubs love you so much. :-)

Anonymous said...


I think there are some missuderstandings here.

First I never said Mr.Doheny is fake, I said the add was missrepresenting.

I acually admire and appriciate the Lady for her energy in the campaign and standing up for her son and I like her.
She is a hero in her own right and I get that.

I will explain again why I think that add was a fake and I am not the only one who thinks that.

In the add she and other seniors talk abourt SS and Medicare and it comes out as she is depending on it, like so much seniors in this area. Contrary to thh average senior here, they have no millionaere ofspring.

If she is really depending on only SS and Medicare thats casts a bad light on her son the millionaere, who should be easy able to support his mother, with all the Money he made on Wallstreet.

Iam also not realy an Owens Supporter, but in this election he was the better choise.

I would love if Mr. Hoffmann would run for office again. He has the integrety, character, businessexperience and ability
to be a real advocate for the North Country.

But it looks like the GOP went for the money and not for the people of the north country.

Let me also clarify that I dont care about the personal fortune of the candidates.
I care for what they are able and willing to do to help the people in their district, for their integrety and character.

They question is why a sucessfull investment mananger wants to quitt his million dollar job on Wallstreet for the "meager" salary of a congressman? For the farmers and the people of the north country? Really?
The Answer is in my opinion in the Downstate and NYCity Donations for the Doheny campaigin.

And by the way are you threating me not to visit Alexeandria Bay no more?
Oh well, I wil say that I do not need to go to Alex Bay ever.

@ 11 AM
I agree, what makes him suprior of fireworkers, teachers nurses,police. handyman they work the same as hard and are way more important as Banksters for society , they just don't get the big pay check.

Why we don't admire people for the contribution for society and not just for their money or big paycheck?

It seems like everybody forgot about the bankcrisis of 2008 what brought the US and nearl down and what happend to their retirements,why the banksters got bailed out and where rewarded instead of getting prostecuted for fraud and get in to prison?

Sorry again for missspellings, but I try to do my best.

Anonymous said...

Doheny lost because he is a Narcissist and a pathetic human being. He is selfish and he treats people like dirt! His lost was due to self-destruction and a change in campaign direction with the hire of his campaign manager (Freeland), whom he also micromanaged. Once the campaign changed direction, it neglected the north country and north country values and this was evident in his slaughtering in Clinton, Essex, Franklin, and St. Lawrence counties. Much more went on than we will ever know. I certainly am glad that he was not rewarded with a pulpit to advance his "Fratty Matty wants to go to Washington" behavior. Owens may not be the best, but he is predictable and is better than Doheny! Hopefully the GOP will run someone with a moral compass in 2 years.

Anonymous said...

8:40- LOL! You mean long stringy unwashed hair isn't a good look?

Here is a note to the ladies out there...if your hair is really dirty, pulling it back doesn't somehow make it look clean again.