Friday, May 30, 2008

Republican drops out of one Congressional race; not joining another

David Bellavia is dropping out of New York's 26th congressional race, and he is dismissing all talk that he might run for New York's 28th.

The Batavia native is an Iraq war vet and an author. He was campaigning for Tom Reynolds' soon-to-be-vacant seat, before Republican support swung behind Chris Lee. Bellavia was mentioned as a possible Republican opponent for Louise Slaughter, but he has ruled that out.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Bellavia to take on Louise?

According to the Buffalo News, David Bellavia is being urged by some in the Republican Party to focus on winning another district, the 28th, held by Louise Slaughter.

In the two months since comparing Barack Obama to Tiger Woods, Bellavia has gone from GOP frontrunner in the 26th District, to being replaced in the conversation by Chris Lee. Both were seeking the seat held by retiring Rep. Tom Reynolds.

Bellavia lives in Batavia, which is not part of the 28th district. That's not a problem. Candidates for the U.S. House need only live in New York.

The move would essentially hand Lee the nomination, and it would find a candidate for the GOP to run against Slaughter. The aptly-named Slaughter has won her last two re-election campaigns in a landslide, each by more than 70% of the vote.

- In other news from NY's 26th, Alice Kryzan is opening her new campaign headquarters Thursday in Williamsville. She's seeking the Democratic nod, as are Jon Powers and Jack Davis.

- This is a stretch, but this week's Dale Sweetland lookalike is Mick Hucknall of Simply Red.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Endorsement for Jon Powers

He's one of three Democrats vying for the Congressional seat being left vacant by Republican Rep. Tom Reynolds. Now, Jon Powers will be on the ballot in November.

Tuesday, Powers received the endorsement of the Working Families Party. Powers, and the other two Dem candidates, Alice Kryzan and Jack Davis, made their pitches to the WF advisory committee this past weekend.

Powers is from Clarence in Erie County, which is also the hometown of Reynolds.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Honor for Maggie - Monroe Co. executive Maggie Brooks is now an honorary co-chair of Rep. John "Randy" Kuhl's re-election campaign. Kuhl represents New York's 29th in Congress; a district that stretches from the Pennsylvania border to the Rochester suburbs. It looks like this move is trying to create momentum in two distinct and different regions of the district. I write that because the honor is also going to Amo Houghton, Kuhl's predecessor. Houghton remains a saint in the Southern Tier. Interesting that he'd be paired with Brooks, who for better or for worse, is tied to her FAIR plan in the public conciousness.

Super Tuesday - School budget voting day is Tuesday. For you, it's voting yes or no on a budget that likely raises your taxes. For us who work in a newsroom, the sudden avalanche of faxes and barrage of phone calls from school districts is a nice mid-year tune-up for November. Last year, budgets were voted down in Greece and Naples. This year, the budget that's almost sure to fail is Canisteo-Greenwood, but there will be a few surprises.

Sweetland Switch - It's a good look for Dale Sweetland, the Republican candidate for Jim Walsh's 25th Congressional seat. I'm talking about the red goatee to match the cropped hair. Reminds me of Hank Scorpio, Homer Simpson's short-lived but awesome boss. If you spot any famous lookalikes of Dale, or any of the candidates, let me know.

Friday, May 16, 2008

56th State Senate race set

Brighton town supervisor Sandy Frankel ended her campaign for the New York State Senate Thursday night, making her intentions clear at the Monroe Co. Democratic Convention.

Frankel said that fellow Democrat Rick Dollinger has the party votes to be the designated candidate, and that she was removing her name from consideration in the name of party unity.

That means the race for the 56th State Senate seat is set. Dollinger will face off with the incumbent, Republican Joe Robach of Greece.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Dean of Democrats in Rochester Thursday (Updated)

Howard's Here (UPDATED) - Howard Dean is in Rochester Thursday night for the Monroe Co. Democratic Convention. The chairman of the Democratic National Committee is in Syracuse Thursday morning, in a show of support for Dan Maffei, running for the 25th District seat in Congress. Tonight in Rochester, several Dem candidates will be officially given the party nod, like judge candidate and current assistant district attorney Joanne Winslow, and county clerk candidate Tom Hasman.

The big story, of course, is Howard Dean steering the Democratic ship. No surprise, he remained neutral on the Democratic Primary.

'Elo Guv'nah (UPDATED) - Gov. David Paterson gave News 8's Evan Axelbank an exclusive 1-on-1 interview Wednesday. Paterson said he is still supporting Clinton, and that anything can happen. When asked to name a scenario where Clinton would be the nominee, he balked. Evan has posted more interesting insights from the Governor here, and here.

Tough Tapdance - The most interesting endorsement of Barack Obama on Wednesday didn't come from John Edwards. In fact, it wasn't really an endorsement at all. The New York branch of NARAL, the National Abortion Rights Action League, broke with it's parent organization by not throwing it's support behind either Obama's or Hillary Clinton's limping campaign.

NARAL NY is just one example. It's in a bind, like a lot of local and statewide organization branches and elected officials. NARAL can't appear to bite the hand of Hillary; however, the longer the organization waits, the more irrelevant-seeming the endorsement becomes.

Of course, there's the irony of a pro-choice organization choosing not to choose.

Sweetland Sweep - Republican Dale Sweetland, running against Dan Maffei for the 25th Congressional seat, has recieved the endorsement of the Wayne Co. Republican Party. This is the seat that will be up for grabs when Jim Walsh retires this year. Sweetland is from Fabius in Onondaga County, where he was a county legislator. Sweetland (on the left) also bears an uncanny resemblance to British boxer Nigel "The UK Hammer" Hudson (on the right).

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Can Hillary make it to the finish line?

That's the big question Wednesday morning. A big win in West Virginia Tuesday didn't change the math for Hillary Clinton. The New York Senator is huddled with her campaign staff, trying to figure out if she has the money to see this race to the end.

Trailing in delegates, superdelegates, and the popular vote, reality has to have set in to Clinton's supporters, who at best can hope for a Julie Moss finish.

In the 1982 Ironman Triathlon, Moss led the way, and was within sight of the finish line when her body just couldn't take any more. She collapsed several times. As she struggled to stand up, or even remain conscious, her friend and chief rival passed her, and crossed the finish line seconds later. Moss did not give up and made it to the end.

With no hope of overtaking Barack Obama, the best Hillary can hope for is an Ironman-like finish to inspire the Democrats.