Smell the Fear

Tom Reed, Republican incumbent in NY-23, is running scared and fucking rats:

The state co-chairman of the Green Party on Friday blamed “dirty tricks’’ by a Republican for the botched effort to put two Green Party members on the November ballot for the 23rd Congressional District covering the Southern Tier and part of the Finger Lakes region.

“It’s someone in that district we have reason to believe is engaging in dirty tricks,’’ state co-chairman Michael O’Neil said. “I think that someone, from the information that was presented to me, was trying to load the November ballot in advance of whatever voter strategy they were trying to pull off. He did not get the consent of the registered Greens he was petitioning on behalf of.’’

That “someone” was a NRCC campaign operative who circulated campaign petitions. Because of the small Green registration in the district, only 75 signatures are needed to get a Green candidate certified, and Republicans decided to try to invent a spoiler when NY-23’s Greens decided not to put their local Nader on the ballot.

NY-23 was redistricted from the infamous NY-29, which was won by closeted sexual harasser and Democrat Eric Massa. It was supposed to be one of two “safe” Republican districts in Western New York, but Reed is running scared because an under-financed, inexperienced candidate named Nate Shinagawa almost beat him in 2012. This time around, he’s facing an experienced candidate named Martha Robertson who’s raised $1 million to his $1.8 million.

NY-23 is R+3, but it contains very liberal Ithaca, where the Democrats come out to vote, which might serve to dampen the usual turnout issues for Democrats. And Reed is just weak: he’s and attorney and debt collector who was supposed to be the designated loser to Massa until Massa imploded in 2010. He’s devoid of charisma, charm or visible intelligence, and his campaigns are unimaginative and lazy.

Looking at the rest of New York, it’s very reasonable to think that Democrats can pick up three seats here. In addition to NY-23, in D+1 NY-22 NY-19, Chris Gibson’s opponent, Sean Eldridge, has raised $2.3 million to Gibson’s $1.4. Then there’s NY-11, where Michael Grimm was just indicted. I’m also unaware of any Democrats in danger here. So Republicans have a reason to worry here, if not in the rest of the country.

48 replies
  1. 1
    Baud says:

    I’m surprised that’s legal in New York.

  2. 2
    Schlemizel says:

    From your lips to His noodley appendages!

  3. 3
    shelley says:

    Can’t he get on the Benghazi bandwagon?

  4. 4

    Voter suppression, this sort of shit, fear is right. They know they can’t get a legitimate majority anymore and need to resort to trickery.

  5. 5
    c u n d gulag says:

    @S. cerevisiae:
    Hey, to them, stealing an election is as good as winning one legitimately!

    For too long, Democrats have brought sporks to knife-fights.

  6. 6
    Davis X. Machina says:

    Looking at the rest of New York, it’s very reasonable to think that Democrats can pick up three seats here.

    The GOP continues to trace all over again the arc of the 1860-vintage Democratic party. Outside the (cultural) South and West, they’re a product no one wants.

  7. 7
    mai naem says:

    I can’t believe you can collect signatures for somebody without getting permission from the person. Even if that part if legal, I can’t believe you can put somebody’s name on the ballot without their approval. That’s crazy. You could technically have somebody get elected who absolutely has no interest in the job. I can see this happening with some minor elected position with somebody who happens to share some famous politician’s name even if it’s just their last name. We have a state rep here whose name is Reagan and I bet a lot of people vote for her just because her name is Reagan. We also have a Dean Martin who won some position.

  8. 8
    Gin & Tonic says:

    Sean Eldridge. Isn’t he the guy who’s trying to buy himself a seat in an upstate district, any district, he doesn’t care, he just *knows* he’s got to be in Congress?

  9. 9
    WereBear says:

    Maybe the Republicans saw the President’s Address this morning:

    Year of Action

  10. 10
    WereBear says:

    And maybe they should see this latest Old Fart Rants:

    Where’s the Republican Outrage?

  11. 11
    WereBear says:

    News from NY’s 21st:

    If Burke of Macomb and Hassig of Colton remain disqualified after any legal challenges, that would mean Democrat Aaron Woolf, of Elizabethtown and New York City, and the Green Party’s Matt Funiciello of Glens Falls would glide through the primaries uncontested and represent their partes in the Nov. 4 general election. Republicans Matt Doheny of Watertown and Elise Stefanik of Willsboro would still face off in a primary.

    NY 21st: Burke and Hassig bumped off ballot

  12. 12
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Yeah, that’s the guy. And he’s running (now) in NY-19, not NY-22, which is an R+3.

  13. 13
    JoyfulA says:

    @mai naem: Lots of minor seats (e.g., tax collector in a rural, low-population township) are filled with a few (occasionally 1) write-ins. Often, the person elected declines.

  14. 14
    JGabriel says:

    Looking at the rest of New York, it’s very reasonable to think that Democrats can pick up three seats here.

    Knowing upstate NY Dems, how do we know they won’t switch parties once they’re elected? Yeah, I’m still pissed about that.

  15. 15
    evolved beyond the fist mistermix says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Yeah, my typo – Eldridge is running in NY-19 which is D+1, not NY-22 which is R+3.

  16. 16
    Walker says:

    It would be awesome if we could get this loser out. Shinagawa ran a very poor campaign. However, while Reed is a poor candidate, opposition to the SAFE act has really motivated the Republican base around here in the Finger Lakes.

  17. 17
    Tommy says:

    @S. cerevisiae: I live in a pretty liberal district. In a place you might not think was liberal. The Republicans freaked out that the Green candidate not only got on the ballot, but was asked to the debates. I didn’t vote for her, but I maybe should have. She just rocked the debates. Seemed like the smartest women on the stage with two men that were not so smart.

  18. 18
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    OT: Efrem Zimbalist Jr, has passed away. He was 95.
    Requiescat in pace.

  19. 19
    WereBear says:

    @Walker: Yeah, they had a rally locally for that… but it was pathetic turnout.

    So I’m thinking it’s few people creating a lot of fuss… because, you know, everyone still has their guns.

  20. 20
    Tommy says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: I had to Google the name. I guess I only hope when I pass away I get this intro:

    Handsome, debonair and blessed with a distinguished voice that reflected his real-life prep school upbringing, Efrem Zimbalist Jr. seemed born to play the television roles that made him famous, that of hip Hollywood detective and brilliant G-man.

  21. 21
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:


    Understood. Zimbalist had a long TV career that began in the 60s so anyone who still has a functioning metabolism is unlikely to know his name. I am in my 60s so I well remember:

    77 Sunset Strip.
    77 Sunset Strip…

  22. 22
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    @Tommy: I guess I did not understand how young you are. I was a kid watching FBI on Sunday evenings with my grandmother, who loved the show. I only barely remember 77 Sunset STrip, since I was (obviously) even younger when that was on.

  23. 23
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:
    I read somewhere that to play an FBI agent on the teevee, Zimbalist had to go through the real-life vetting for candidate FBI Special Agents — on J. Edgar’s orders. I wonder if it’s true.

  24. 24
    Tommy says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: I was born in the 60s (1969) and didn’t have a TV much less cable until a few years ago. Still catching up :).

  25. 25
    WereBear says:

    @Amir Khalid: I wouldn’t be surprised that was a condition of his approving the show at all. He was a serious control freak.

  26. 26
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    Not sure about the vetting. He did train at the FBI Academy.

  27. 27
    Tommy says:

    @a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q): I both like and dislike your comment. That you think I am older, well with age comes wisdom. I am not so wise.

  28. 28
    Augie says:

    Republicans will do anything to win and I applaud them for that. If we were really concerned about governance and the importance of actually winning elections, we would do the same. Elections matter people!

  29. 29
    Augie says:

    I mean, we should be putting Tea Party candidates on every single Congressional electoral ballot in the country.

  30. 30
    Mike in NC says:

    He’s devoid of charisma, charm or visible intelligence, and his campaigns are unimaginative and lazy.

    This sounds exactly like the two creeps trying to get the GOP nomination for NC-7. One worked for Jesse Helms and the other is even more pathological.

  31. 31
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Mike in NC:

    One worked for Jesse Helms and the other is even more pathological.

    Nicely done.

  32. 32
    Mr Stagger Lee says:

    @Amir Khalid: Hollywood had to agree with Hoover when they filmed the FBI story(Melvin Purvis the agent who took out John Dillenger was excised out of the movie because Hoover had him banned), Hoover through his infamous card system had power to break prominent politicians, businessmen, civic leaders. The FBI under Hoover was America’s KGB.

  33. 33
    Jay C says:

    Not that I’m an expert on Upstate politics, but I’ve seen a lot of commentary to the effect that redistricting (due to NY’s longterm population loss vis-a-vis Congressional seats) has left a lot of NYS Republicans scrambling: most of the state has always been tidily gerrymandered (as is the Statehouse) to protect Republican districts (and Democrats as well!); but the long slide into toxicity of the GOP brand is having its effect throughout the state.

    However, I’m not sure about NY-11: through some fluke of the filing laws and the timing of his arrest, Michael Grimm is, I think, still going to be on the ballot: and, unless he is actually in jail at election time, is considered likely to win. And probably even if he IS in jail…. Staten Island is a GOP stronghold.

  34. 34
    WereBear says:

    @Mr Stagger Lee: Melvin Purvis the agent who took out John Dillenger was excised out of the movie because Hoover had him banned

    Just reading a new book by Purvis’ son, a biography of his father. The Vendetta by Alston Purvis.

    Give you an idea of how he viewed Hoover. That’s a public figure where the more you know, the more you are shocked and amazed.

  35. 35
    Jay C says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    That’s not surprising: the old “FBI” show had been done with a lot of cooperation from the Bureau: J. Edgar Hoover (yes, a famous “control freak”) insisted that the show be, basically, an infomercial for the FBI, and made sure the scripts put it in the best llght. To point, says IMDB, where Hoover had a veto over which guest stars could appear on the show: Bette Davis, for some reason, didn’t make the cut.

  36. 36
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    @Tommy: From your reply I see that you are 10 years behind me in age. No offense intended.

  37. 37
    WereBear says:

    @Jay C: And yet, their taste in dresses was so similar.

  38. 38
    smedley the uncertain says:

    @mai naem: Having circulated petitions and run caucuses for the county Independence party I know the candidate must accept, in writing, the nomination for their name to appear on the ballot. I am disappointed my party endorsed Reed, but that happens at the state level far way from here. I’ll be supporting Robertson.

  39. 39
    smedley the uncertain says:

    @Walker: …and here in the wilds of Western NY.

  40. 40
    KG says:

    @Tommy: just remember voting for a third party candidate is just like voting for the republican or the democrat (depending on who you are talking to) and totally throwing away your vote. I’m kinda bummed that I can’t throw my vote away in California’s general elections anymore.

  41. 41
    VOR says:

    @mai naem: Back in 1994 a woman named Sharon Anderson won the Republican primary for Attorney General of Minnesota, defeating the endorsed candidate. You see, at the time there was a local daytime TV host also named Sharon Anderson. But she lost the general election to the incumbent Democrat AG. See Wikipedia

    Minnesota also allows people to run under the name they are known by in the community. This is how James Janos (legal name) was allowed to run for Governor as Jesse Ventura (stage name) in 1998. Since Scandinavian names are common, a few years ago a candidate tried to run under his wife’s Scandinavian maiden name, arguing that was the name he was known by in the community. IIRC, he didn’t win the election but I can’t recall whether they allowed him to list his name that way on the ballot.

  42. 42
    El Caganer says:

    @WereBear: I’m surprised at the number of people who think Clint Eastwood’s movie about Hoover was some kind of hagiography of a Great American. It sure didn’t come across that way to me

  43. 43
    WereBear says:

    @El Caganer: But hey, how many of them actually saw it?

    They are such authority-licking lemmings.

  44. 44
    gratuitous says:

    “Their local Nader”? That’s more than a bit of a cheap shot, for at least one important reason: As soon as the Green Party folks got wind of the Republican ratfucking, knowing that their presence on the ballot would hamper Democratic efforts to win these elections, they made sure they weren’t on the ballot.

    For those of us who don’t think the Democrats are the political be-all and end-all of the liberal end of the political spectrum, the Green Party serves in many ways as the Democratic wing of the Democratic party.

  45. 45
    Mnemosyne says:


    I feel kind of sorry for the Green Party folks who have been doing the hard work of running local candidates and trying to get them elected to local and state offices (which is how you build support for your party and work your way up to running national candidates). The national GP let Nader hijack them for his vanity run and now everyone else got tarred with the same brush.

  46. 46
    WereBear says:

    @gratuitous: For those of us who don’t think the Democrats are the political be-all and end-all of the liberal end of the political spectrum, the Green Party serves in many ways as the Democratic wing of the Democratic party.

    And that’s accurate, true, and a beautiful thing. But they also don’t get many votes. I should know, I’ve given them plenty… when it was safe to do so.

  47. 47
    rikyrah says:

    come on New York state!

  48. 48
    C.V. Danes says:

    @Mnemosyne: Exactly. Contrary to popular opinion, not every green is a “Nader”, just like not everyone who supports unions is a commie socialist. Contrary to popular opinion.

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