Sunday, June 30, 2013

NYPIRG says that State Senator Martin Golden (R-C, Bklyn) passed more bills – 88 – through the Senate than any other member during the 2013 legislative session

Albany Senate leadership seen as  feeding Golden bills to pad his record and avoid  a "Do Nothing" label  ---  but is Golden even aware of what he is passing ?


One bill that passed with Golden's vote  ---  authorizes a program that in practice called on girls in grammar school  to pretend to be lesbians and ask to kiss each other  ---  that law becomes fully effective tomorrow


According to a report that appeared in Liz Benjamin's column on June 28th,  "NYPIRG has compiled its annual assessment of the 2013 legislative session  [and]  ...  Sen. Marty Golden, a Brooklyn Republican passed more bills – 88 – through the Senate than any other member...."    (See  "2013 By The Numbers" by Liz Benjamin, 6/28/13, YNN Capital Tonight [http://capitaltonightny.ynn.com/2013/06/2013-by-the-numbers/]).  As is normal in politics, in this instance it's fair to say that this particular silver lining for the Brooklyn GOP State Senator is completely contained inside a cloud.  The GOP State Senate leadership is working overtime to protect one of its vulnerable members.  Dean Skelos and the rest of the GOP Albany  insiders have seen to it that the soon-to-be-targeted Martin Golden has what appears to be a solid record of legislative accomplishment.

However, does State Senator Golden even have a clue about what has been and continues to be done on his behalf, or does he even know the content of the bills put forward in his name?

A quick look at State Senator Martin Golden's facebook and twitter messages  for June 22nd would give very little indication that he is in any way conscious of the "heavy lifting" that was being  done in his name up in Albany.   Instead, State Senator  Golden's social media  message about "Legislative Accomplishments"  linked to the GOP Senate Caucus'  flyer,  "Turning Dysfunction into Progress 2013  Legislative Accomplishmnets."  That flyer listed  twelve bills:  S4777D; S5656; S2149; S3768; S1111; S5414; S270B; S4862; S2534;  S5865; S4082; and S3723B.  Oddly, the  bulk of those bills were not typical of the eighty-eight [88] passed-bills sponsored by State Senator Golden.

With the GOP leadership shuffling so many bills under Golden's name,  does he even know what he's sponsoring and voting for?  And, what exactly is it that State Senator Golden has been sponsoring and/or voting for ?  People have let me know that a lot of it is very dicey, indeed.

I had earlier reported in a post below that one such very questionable bill that passed with Golden's vote had been used locally to justify a program in which girls in grammar school  were called on to pretend to be lesbians and ask to kiss each other (See below:  "Wednesday, May 22, 2013 -- 'PART I — Before anybody supports Marty Golden’s “Republicans for Change” they should know that Marty Golden is no kind of “Family Values” Conservative — SOME BACKGROUND' ").  These and similar exercises are issues schools around the whole state are obligated to address under New York’s Dignity for All Students Act [DASA](See "11 Years old Girls Required To Ask To Kiss Others Girls Due To New York Law" by Todd Starnes, 4/25/13, United to Save America [http://unitedtosaveamerica.blogspot.com/2013/04/11-years-old-girls-required-to-ask-to.html];  also see "Asking Girls To Kiss, How It Did Happen, The History Of The Dignity For All Students Act Part 1"  by Robert Adler, 4/28/13, United to Save America [http://unitedtosaveamerica.blogspot.com/2013/04/asking-girls-to-kiss-how-it-happened.html]).

Although asked to specifically exclude these particular practices or limit the application of the state law so as to not require them in religious schools, Golden did not make any such proposal in 2013. However, he did make a proposal to broaden the categories and increase the reach of the DASA law (See below:  "Thursday, May 23, 2013 --  'PART II — Before anybody supports Marty Golden’s “Republicans for Change” they should know that Marty Golden is no kind of “Family Values” Conservative — CHARGES AGAINST GOLDEN' ").

I had also earlier reported in a post below about another Golden-sponsored bill that became law. In that one, State Senator Golden included  five specifically targeted tax abatements for luxury housing towers in Manhattan as part of his larger housing bill.  The Daily News specifically named several developers connected to those locations, who had made large donations to various politicos including the GOP State Senators  (See below: "Tuesday, June 18, 2013 --  'Daily News Twice Spotlights Brooklyn's Marty Golden for sponsoring State Senate bill for tax breaks on certain Manhattan billionaire and multi-millionaire condos and rental units' ").

No doubt  many other questionable things will be disclosed in Golden's eighty-eight passed bills upon closer scrutiny in the future.  Connect the dots, folks, and look at the kind of Albany insider that our State Senator Martin Golden is now willing to be, because he's afraid of  being called "Good old 'Do Nothing' Marty".

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Petitioning 2013 --- flukey weather has many scrambling in the last days of petitioning

Many Orthodox Jewish  voters are refusing to sign GOP petitions with DA Hynes' name on it -- so several Brooklyn GOP organizations will be circulating petitions without a DA candidate on them


Petitioning is always where the rubber meets the road with everybody's political dreams, and in some cases, nightmares. Some prefer the metaphor of leather pounding the hard pavements .... (isn't that too British?)

I've gotten a variety of reports from a variety of sources and here's the gouge on what's happening.

"Stormy Weather" has complicated the early going petitioning for almost everybody, but will effect the GOP organizations  most because of their smaller teams of gatherers and smaller voter base. With so many late-gathered signatures expect that there will be plenty of "SAP" specs by those doing serious petition challenges at the BOE and then in court.

Even recently generated GOP walking lists are turning up lots of empties at the BOE listed addresses, especially in wide swaths of Bay Ridge. These are being carefully noted for an important tactical use in the near future.

One Republican organization claims that they aren't having much difficulty petitioning or qualifying county committee. And that they think that they will have enough signatures to qualify their mayoral candidate in Brooklyn alone.

At least one county-wide campaign has banked enough signatures that it is already moving into the next phase of campaigning --- lining up a few notables for a media campaign [more in a future post].

Now that he has qualified for "matching funds," one GOP City Council candidate plans to continue petitioning in order to open several "third party lines" for opportunity to ballot primaries.

With filing coming soon, we'll see how competitive the "Golden Faction" in the GOP  is going to be county-wide.

Friday, June 28, 2013

This really tears it --- It has been reported that --- REPUBLICAN STATE SENATORS INTEND TO RAISE FUNDS FOR IDC DEMOCRATS' PRIMARIES if necessary

NYS Senate Co-Leaders Dean Skelos and Jeff Klein appearing at fund raiser for "Republican" Mark Grisanti  is a demonstration of new symbiosis between GOP State Senators and IDC Democrat counterparts  ---  local Brooklyn deal already being felt vis a vis GOP State Senator Golden,  State Senator Savino, an IDC member, and another Democrat State Senator strongly supported by the GOP State Senate Leadership


"...the Republicans plan on returning the favor [raising funds for certain Democrats], according to Senate Deputy GOP Leader Tom Libous, who has repeatedly pledged to assist the IDC members – even financially, if necessary – if they face primary challenges from the left next fall"  (See "Fair Elections Protestors To Greet Skelos, Klein & Grisanti" [last pargraph in report] by Liz Benjamin, 6/27/13, YNN Capital Tonight [http://capitaltonightny.ynn.com/2013/06/fair-elections-protestors-to-greet-skelos-klein-grisanti/]).

It was recently reported by Celeste Katz of the Daily News that:  ".... Libous said he's willing to help the IDC beat back potential challenges.  ***  'I'd be very open to helping them in any way I could,' Libous said.  ***   He acknowledged his priority is to 'help our own members first' and pick up additional Republican seats.  ***   But he added that if IDC leader Jeffrey Klein and his three colleagues  'need some help, it wouldn't be out of the question.'  That could include money or other assistance, he said. ***  Libous said he does not believe the pressure from the left will ultimately fracture the unprecedented bipartisan governing coalition. ***  'The coalition is very strong right now, and will be stronger next year," he said.

This is bound to have very interesting local implications, with Republican State Senator Martin Golden and IDC Democrat Diane Savino sitting cheek to jowel with a long  border along the Narrows and along various blocks in  southwest Brooklyn.

Some members of the Brooklyn GOP establishment  have conjectured that the current GOP organizational  fight was a preemptive strike by Golden, in an attempt to prevent any GOP push-back against  the Brooklyn  GOP Senator's obvious alliance with IDC members and at least one other Democrat State Senator in Brooklyn.

Polling shows that Catsimatidis is gaining on Lhota, with McDonald also showing gains

GOP pollster John McLaughlin's June 27th memo "New York City Mayoral Race - Republican Primary Survey Results," showed that Republican mayoral candidates are now recognized by a majority of  possible primary voters  ---  with 40% still undecided


Third candidate in race, George McDonald, shows small gains in polls and gets an endorsement by independent Fiorello La Guardia Republicans of  Southwest Brooklyn


The Catsimatidis Campaign has broadcast a June 27th "memo" by John McLaughlin that contained the following bullet points (among other points and information):

"  ...  [o]  The plurality of Republicans know Lhota, but remain undecided. However, when they learn of John Catsimatidis and his message, these undecided voters choose Catsimatidis at a better than 2 to 1 ratio over Lhota.
         [o] It's very clear that John Catsimatidis has the momentum to win in the primary and needs to accelerate. As John Catsimatidis steps up his campaign organization and media we expect this momentum to continue...."


LAGUARDIA  REPUBLICAN  CLUB  ENDORSES  GEORGE  MCDONALD

At around the same time as the  local release of the McLaughlin memo by the Catsimatidis people, the Fiorello La Guardia Republican Club put out this Email release about its endorsement of mayoral candidate George McDonald:

FIORELLO LAGUARDIA REPUBLICAN ORGANIZATION
An Independent Republican Organization for Brooklyn
8024 17th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11214-718.256-4414
 WWW.LAGUARDIAREPUBLICANCLUB.ORG
Hon. Arnaldo A. Ferraro, Ph.D., Former State Assemblyman 49th AD
Founder/Executive Chairman
Lucretia Regina-Potter –Michael Bennette
Republican District Leaders 49 AD
                                                                                                                          
June 27, 2013  ---   For Immediate Release

The Fiorello LaGuardia Republican Organization Endorses George McDonald for Mayor

Former Brooklyn Republican Assemblyman Arnaldo A. Ferraro, Executive Chairman of the Fiorello LaGuardia Independent Republican Organization recently endorsed George McDonald, Republican Candidate for Mayor. In making the endorsement, Ferraro pointed out that he is convinced that “George McDonald is the common sense candidate for Mayor who has the most experience and innovative solutions to address the many problems that our City faces today.  As Mayor, his number one priority will be to assist our small businesses and the private sector to create jobs.” Ferraro continued, “We are also endorsing George McDonald because, as opposed to the two other Republican candidates who have already sided with one of the two factions of our Party, he will dedicate his efforts to unify the Party, not according to whether a faction supports him or not, but only in the best interest of Kings County.”

McDonald said, “I want to thank Arnaldo and the entire Fiorello LaGuardia Independent Republican Organization for their tremendous support.  I pledge I will work hard throughout the coming months to share our commonsense message of creating jobs and opportunity for all New Yorkers.”

[The release was accompanied by photos showing:  George McDonald and Former Republican Assemblyman Arnaldo A. Ferraro;  and a group photo of those present at the endorsement ceremony for George McDonald  ---  Lucretia Regina-Potter, Female Republican District Leader (State Committeewoman) of the 49th Assembly District, Michael Bennette, Male Republican District Leader (State Committeeman) of the 49th Assembly District, Stephen Maresca, former President of the Fiorello LaGuardia Republican Organization and Kate Binni, longtime LaGuardia Club member.]

Thursday, June 27, 2013

" Common Sense: It's over - Amen! "

Is that good news ?    Is that bad news ?  What could Jerry Kassar possibly be talking about ?


OF COURSE !  KASSAR IS FLACKING FOR HIS BOSS  STATE SENATOR MARTIN GOLDEN (R-C)  ...  and all the hard work he did in Albany passing large parts of the ultra-liberal Cuomo agenda


All of this brouhaha is over Jerry Kassar's column, which appeared  in this week's Home Reporter and at/on other media and internet sites (See "Common Sense: It's over - Amen!" by Jerry Kassar,   6/25/13, Home Reporter/Spectator  [http://www.homereporternews.com/opinion/common-sense-it-s-over---amen/article_1b3fbe08-ddc2-11e2-9ab9-001a4bcf887a.html];  see also at "Common Sense: It's over - Amen!"  comment by Ross Brady , 6/27/13,  Brooklyn Conservative Party [http://brooklynconservativeparty.com/?p=956] with link to Kassar's  column at the Home Reporter site).

Beware of anybody who starts off what they have to say with a disclaimer  [ first things first -- they are making sure that they have an escape hatch if it all blows up later on].  In this instance, Kassar starts by describing the hectic recent legislative sessions in the NYS Assembly and  State Senate; and he quickly adds the following:  "I am not suggesting this is the best way to go. It simply is the way they conduct business in Albany.  And I, for one, think it is a prime area for reform."

Rah ! Rah ! Rah !  Here's to Jerry Kassar !   "  REFORMER " !  --  or maybe that should  be  --  "TRANSFORMER " !

Enough about that, because that isn't the point of  Kassar's  "Common Sense" column this week. No, like most weeks, Kassar's column is all about making sure that his boss, State Senator Martin Golden, gets the credit for everything good that happened and none of the bad stuff that went down, either in the 22nd Senate  District or up in Albany.  So here's Kassar's pitch  -- "Locally, Conservative Republican  legislators State Senator Marty Golden -- whom I serve as chief of staff -- and Assemblymember Nicole Malliotakis had a strong finish both for what they did and what they did not do."   Doesn't that imply that during the rest of the legislative session they were sort of -- well -- weak ?

Maybe,  I'm being  too critical.  But, I  strongly suspect that I have this just right.  BTW, I'll leave Hon. Nicole M. out of the rest of this, since I have no quarrel with her  --  yet, this year.

Let's jump to this:  "Golden had a number of important economic development bills passed by both houses and received a great deal of attention for sponsoring the return of the lever voting machines for this year’s primary and run-off elections."   "[I]mportant economic development bills ... that's getting some money to some of Golden's right important people ( like Manhattan luxury R.E. developers) by old time log-rolling and giving a lot more money to somebody else's right important people; this is not the way to cut the budget and keep taxes down for everybody.  And the old voting machines  -- Marty wants credit for going back to the old voting  machines -- how about getting to the bottom of the problems with the "new"  voting system. (Let's see if this comes back to haunt the State Senator sometime soon.)

Next, now this is rich  ---  "Golden played an important role in blocking a vote to expand abortion in the state and supported nine points known as the Women’s Equality Agenda."  Okay, I'll bight, what important role did Golden play in blocking a vote to expand abortion in the state ?  All I know is that Golden's own bill was used in a procedural move to get a vote on the abortion bill onto the floor of the senate; and that move failed by only one vote.  As for Golden's supporting the rest of Cuomo's "Women's Equality Agenda" (and Kassar's writing about that like it's a good thing)  --  does Mike Long know about that ?  Or, does Mike Long now think that passing  9/10ths of that agenda a good thing too ?  (What a dog and pony show these "Conservatives" are becoming !  But, that's something for another day.)

I think this one is my favorite :  "Golden also sponsored in the Senate a bill that ... once again will allow retired police officers to carry a full 10-round ammunition load."   Of course, don't mention that Golden made that illegal in the first place by passing Cuomo's so-called S.A.F.E Act gun control law without knowing what was in it.

I'll close with something  in the form of a Double Jeopardy Question:

Galewyn Massey:  "Alex, I'll take 'Phony Conservatives' for $200.... "

Alex  Trebek: "The Conservative Party county leader who wrote this,  "For that matter, all our local legislators work hard....  Congratulations on a good session."

Galewyn Massey:  "Why, that would be from the last paragraph of this week's "Common Sense" column, "It's over - Amen! " by  Jerry Kassar.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

THE BIGGEST SCANDAL of Snowden's Run is that, even at this late date, NOBODY SEEMS TO KNOW exactly what it is that Edward Snowden has taken, what he has done with it -- or almost as bad -- what he can, might, or intends to do with it

So far the Obama Administration has shown no ability whatsoever to manage the crisis or reassure anybody that it knows what needs to be done


Although some observers like the Wall Street Journal's  Brett Stephen's have observed that "... [H]owever the Snowden episode turns out ...what it mainly illustrates is that we are living in an age of American impotence (See "Stephens: The Age of American Impotence -- As the Edward Snowden saga illustrates, the Obama administration is running out of foreign influence" by Brett Stephens, 6/24/13, Wall Streeet Journal/Online [http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324637504578565530512048940.html]); the most profound real threat to American interests is that the Snowden Affair is a direct breach of  our modern cyber-Maginot  line in the technologically reinforced defensive perimeter of  the homeland. Exacerbating  that breach is the fact that even weeks into the crisis we don't know how wide or deep that gash into our vitals actually is.

Several U.S. officials have said  that U.S. intelligence agencies are worried because they do not yet know how much highly sensitive material is in the possession of former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, and that his whereabouts, ultimate destination  and current intentions are unclear (See "U.S. Officials Don't Know How Much Secret Material Snowden Took", 6/24/13, Newsmax/Reuters  [http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/snowden-took-secret-material/2013/06/24/id/511649#ixzz2XFVSJizO]).  Investigators believe Snowden, who had been working in Hawaii for an NSA contractor, was partly successful at covering his tracks as he burrowed into a broad array of information about operations conducted by NSA, as well as  its British equivalent, the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ).

During a weekend television appearance, U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein, Chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said that Snowden possessed around 200 secret documents, but a non-government source familiar with Snowden's materials reports that Senator Feinstein had grossly understated the size of Snowden's document haul. That source indicated Snowden left for Hong Kong with thousands of documents copied from the NSA files. Two U.S. national security sources that were among the people Reuters spoke to confirmed that investigators believe Snowden possesses a substantial amount of secret material, though they declined to discuss numbers.

According to a report that appeared in the Washington Post, "The ability of contractor-turned-fugitive Edward Snowden to evade arrest is raising new concerns among U.S. officials about the security of top-secret documents he is believed to have in his possession — and about the possibility that he could willingly share them with those who assist his escape..."   (See "U.S. worried about security of files Snowden is thought to have" by Ellen Nakashima and Greg Miller,  6/24/13, Washington Post  [http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/us-officials-worried-about-security-of-files-snowden-is-thought-to-have/2013/06/24/1e036964-dd09-11e2-85de-c03ca84cb4ef_story.html]). "A former senior U.S. official said that the material that has leaked publicly would be of limited use to China or Russia but that if Snowden also stole files that outline U.S. cyber-penetration efforts, the damage of any disclosure would be multiplied. The official, like others in this article, spoke on the condition of anonymity because the official wasn’t authorized to discuss the matters on the record..."

According to the Washington Post report, the NSA has teams of analysts scouring systems that they think Snowden may have accessed, and these analysts are seeking to retrace Snowden's steps online, so as to assemble a catalogue of the material he may have taken. “They think he copied so much stuff — that almost everything that place does, he has,” said one former government official, referring to the NSA, where Snowden worked as a contractor for Booz Allen Hamilton while in the NSA’s Hawaii facility. “Everyone’s nervous about what the next thing will be, what will be exposed.”

The damage assessment being conducted by U.S. officials is expected to take “a few months, at best,” said a senior intelligence official. “We’re looking for all of the information that was disclosed, and assessing the damage it may have caused in terms of national security sources....”

Many key government spokespersons have openly said all of  this is very bad --- only a few have  suggested (off the record) how bad it actually might be or become.  Or, that it really might extend to what some have described as "everything" !

Monday, June 24, 2013

Did the fight to pass Goveernor Cuomo's Womens' Agenda permanently disrupt and weaken the GOP-IDC NY Senate leadership coalition

Did Senate Co-leader Jeff Klein's last second attempt to hijack  a bill sponsored by State Senator Golden break other GOP-IDC agreements that had been made to pass 9/10ths of the Cuomo Womens Agenda?


Senate co-leader Jeffrey Klein’s surprise last-minute push to get a vote on Gov. Cuomo's measure to strengthen abortion rights may have helped the one group he detests the most in the state senate - his colleagues among the NYS Senate's Democratic Caucus  (See "Sen. Jeff Klein's Abortion Push May Actually Help The NY Senate Democrats" by Ken Lovett, 6/24/13, NY Daily News/ Daily Politics [http://www.nydailynews.com/blogs/dailypolitics/2013/06/sen-jeff-kleins-abortion-push-may-actually-helped-the-ny-senate-democrats]).

Jeff Klein made some of  his "GOP partners" furious when, on the last day of the legislative session, he tried to implement a little-used state senate procedure to force a vote on the abortion plank of The Cuomo Womens Agenda .

For those not familiar with the arrangement of the New York State Senate,  Klein, along with three other Democrats had formed the Independent Democratic Conference (IDC); and those Democrats, and a couple of others who came on board later, entered into an unprecedented bipartisan coalition in the New York State Senate.  The handfull of IDC Democrats, along  with all the senate Republicans to run the chamber instead of the Democratic majority caucus.

Now, some Democrat insiders are saying that, because Klein's recent abortion rights amendment actually failed by only one vote — with no GOPers backing it  —  Klein has now given Senate Democrats a major issue with which to target a few vulnerable Republicans around the state heading into next year's crucial election battle for control of the chamber. Meanwhile, there are also questions whether the unexpected move by Klein irreparably harmed the  2013 bipartisan coalition running the State Senate.

Senate Deputy GOP Leader Thomas Libous says it hasn't, arguing that the two sides knew they would never agree on all issues. But Klein didn't seem quite so sure, saying, "I hope it can recover."

Sunday, June 23, 2013

The Obama Administration has turned a national scandal and possible massive security breakdown at the NSA into a massive farce --- part "Keystone Kops" --- part dog and pony show --- all to the detriment of U.S. national security

According to Reuters News,  President Barack Obama has found that his domestic and international policy agenda is sidelined as he has scrambles to deflect accusations that his administration's surveillance policies violate the privacy protections and civil rights guaranteed to Americans


So far the Obama Administration's security services  and law enforcement  agencies appear to have mishandled the Snowden problem at every turn, from the very beginning to the present



Since the NSA scandal has broken, the president and his various spokespersons have been trying to maintain a "party line" that all of the surveillance, disclosed and heretofor undisclosed, has been necessary to thwart attacks on the United States (See "Snowden leaves Hong Kong, frustrating U.S. extradition effort" by James Pomfret and Lidia Kelly, Reuters [Hong Kong/Moscow] [http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/06/23/us-usa-security-flight-idUSBRE95M02H20130623]).

Now, it looks like all the NSA stuff can turn into a massive security breach for Humpty Dumpty Obama with little or nothing that all the kings horses and all the kings men can do anything about.
      
On Friday, the U.S. government filed espionage charges against Edward Snowden.  The government's law enforcement wing has charged Snowden with theft of U.S. government property, unauthorized communication of national defense information and willful communication of classified communications intelligence to an unauthorized person, with the latter two charges falling under the U.S. Espionage Act.

Whether the filing of  these charges turn out to be a mere hollow gesture remains to be seen. However, Snowden's departure from Hong Kong, is likely to be an additional embarrassment for the administration of President Barack Obama. Why, only yesterday, U.S. authorities had been saying  that they were optimistic Hong Kong would cooperate over the handling Snowden. Less than a day later, Hong Kong had let Snowden move beyond  its jusirsdiction apparently without any exit formalities creating any undue burden or interference.

According to the report appearing on Reuters, the United States had asked Hong Kong, a special administrative region (SAR) of China, to send Snowden home.  According to an official statement by the local Hong Kong government, "The U.S. government earlier on made a request to the HKSAR government for the issue of a provisional warrant of arrest against Mr Snowden....  Since the documents provided by the U.S. government did not fully comply with the legal requirements under Hong Kong law, the HKSAR government has requested the U.S. government to provide additional information ... As the HKSAR government has yet to have sufficient information to process the request for provisional warrant of arrest, there is no legal basis to restrict Mr Snowden from leaving Hong Kong."   Nothing is available to indicate what further information officials in Hong Kong might have needed.

Reuters also reported that Snowden is being accompanied by a Wikileaks representative and that an Aeroflot plane had taken them to Moscow.  Where Snowden and things go from there is very speculative. I can only wonder if there might be  some mischief in store from President Obama's Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin.

The White House had no comment about Edward Snowden's departure from Hong Kong or his reported  transport-to and arrival-at Moscow.

In another new turn, raising the stakes even more, Reuters reports that  the South China Morning Post has quoted Snowden as offering new details about United States' spy activities, including accusations of U.S. hacking of Chinese mobile telephone companies and targeting China's Tsinghua University. China's Xinhua news agency referred to Snowden's accusations about the hacking of Chinese targets as "clearly troubling signs";  adding, "They demonstrate that the United States, which has long been trying to play innocent as a victim of cyber attacks, has turned out to be the biggest villain in our age."

THE APPEARANCE OF NATIONAL SECURITY AGENCY DIRECTOR ON  ABC NEWS OFFERS NO COMFORT WHATSOEVER

"During an exclusive interview with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos, National Security Agency Director Gen. Keith Alexander said this morning on 'This Week'  that NSA leaker Edward Snowden has caused 'irreversible and significant damage' to the U.S. with his actions. But Alexander could not say why the NSA’s systems were not able to prevent Snowden from stealing and leaking highly classified documents, saying “the system did not work as it should have.'  ***  When asked by Stephanopoulos, 'Do you understand why the system did not blink red in a way that could prevent Snowden from leaving Hawaii in the first place with those secrets?' Alexander responded, 'No, I don’t.' " (See "NSA Chief Keith Alexander: ‘System Did Not Work As It Should Have’ to Prevent Snowden Document Leaks" by Imtiyaz Delawala, 6/23/13, ABC News [http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2013/06/nsa-chief-keith-alexander-system-did-not-work-as-it-should-have-to-prevent-snowden-document-leaks/]).

General Keith Alexander's appearance on "This Week" was nothing more than a PR diversion, much like what Susan Rice was sent out to do following Benghazi ---  General Alexander handled his job just about as well as Susan Rice did.  Even though he was handled with velvet gloves by George Stephanopoulos,  General Alexander showed that Snowden and those standing with him a winning and that the U.S. is losing.  If you listened to what was said, it doesn't get bigger than this.

THE NSA SCANDAL IS STILL VERY BIG  ---  THE NSA BREACH OF NATIONAL SECURITY IS GROWING

The NSA scandal is growing --- so is the NSA breach of national security caused by its contractor and agent, Edward Snowden.  Everything being done by the Obama Administration about any of this has been like pouring gasoline on a fire.

Are NYC taxpayers paying part of the bills for one of Micheal Bloomberg's pet projects --- Mayors Against Illegal Guns ? YES !

"The Weekly Standard" and "Politico" established a sponsorship relationship between Bloomberg's national gun control advocacy group and the City of New York


Earlier this week it was reported that the name “Mayors Against Illegal Guns”  which is well known as Mike Bloomberg’s gun-control arm and the group’s website is registered to, and handled by, official city government servers and staffers ( See "Michael Bloomberg gun control group site registered to NYC" by Maggie Haberman & Steve Friess, 6/21/13, Politico [http://www.politico.com/story/2013/06/bloomberg-gun-group-site-registered-to-nyc-93182.html#ixzz2X1NXmGXd];  also see "NYC Taxpayers Help Sponsor Bloomberg’s Gun Control Group" by Jim Swift, 6/22/13, The Weekly Standard/The Blog [http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/nyc-taxpayers-help-sponsor-bloomberg-s-gun-control-group_736932.html] [both Politico and The Weekly Standard mentioned that questions about the CIty's sponsorship of  group's website server were first raised by Ace of Spades blogger John Ekdahl with a link to his blog]).
"The Weekly Standard" confirmed the City of New York’s involvement with the domain’s purchase and hosting by phone  in a call with Mayor Bloomberg’s press secretary Marc La Vorgna.  When specifically asked whether the purchase and hosting of the domain by New York City’s Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications was an intentional act done on behalf of the mayor, La Vorgna replied that the purchase had “definitely been vetted.”

According to the mayor's spokesperson, The Mayors Against Illegal Guns website, like other Bloomberg efforts to lobby the federal government, was done in “his capacity as mayor.”  Mayor Bloomberg’s push for changes to federal firearms law was part of the “federal agenda for New York City.”  Then La Vorgna  made a comparison of the mayors natioanl anti-gun effort to others that Michael Bloomberg has undertaken, in his capacity as mayor along with other mayors, such as the effort to limit the use of food stamps in purchasing sugary drinks.

In the report by Poltico's Haberman and Friess, it was noted that  "...[T]he use of a city web server and city employees underscore what critics have long derided as a blurring of the lines between government resources and Bloomberg’s own multi-billion-dollar fortune, his company, and his pet interests in his three terms as mayor."

However, John McCarthy, a City Hall-based spokesman for Bloomberg,  who also handles elements of the  Mayors Against Illegal Guns' media output, responded with the following points:  "Mayor Bloomberg is the co-chair of the coalition of Mayors Against Illegal Guns....  Its activities are in the interest of keeping New York City safe. He is acting in his capacity as mayor of New York City....  Just as when he advocates for a bill in Albany that we want passed he is acting in his capacity as mayor, because he believes the bill is in the city’s interests. That is the prerogative of any mayor.”

Saturday, June 22, 2013

State Senator Martin Golden's sponsored bill used by Skelos' IDC allies and Democratic Caucus in failed attempt to get abortion plank of Cuomo's Women's Agenda to NYS Senate floor for vote

Dean Skelos'  NYS Senate leadership partner Jeff Klein tried to use the bill of Skelos' GOP caucus partner, Marty Golden, to get Govermor Cuomo's abortion bill through the State Senate


All of the behind the scenes jockeying is not yet public, but Dean Skelos' leadership partner Sen. Jeff Klein (D-Bronx), leader of the Independent Democratic Conference, tried to attach Cuomo’s abortion plank to another health-related bill brought by Sen. Martin Golden (R-Brooklyn) (See "Sheldon Silver Does Not Rule Out Taking Up Women's Equality Bills Individually" by Glenn Blain, 6/21/13  [http://www.nydailynews.com/blogs/dailypolitics/2013/06/sheldon-silver-does-not-rule-out-taking-up-womens-equality-bills-individually]).

The Klein measure was defeated only when Bronx Democratic State  Senator Ruben Diaz, largely a family values conservative, joined with the united Republican conference and voted to defeat the motion to tack abortion onto Golden's bill.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Daily News Twice Spotlights Brooklyn's Marty Golden for sponsoring State Senate bill for tax breaks on certain Manhattan billionaire and multi-millionaire condos and rental units

Marty Golden admits that he knew that five posh NYC developments would become eligible for tax breaks as a result of what was added to a housing bill -- backroom "wheeling and dealing"  costs NYC tens of millions of dollars in lost property taxes due to controversial abatements to posh projects


In typical Marty Golden fashion, while attempting to defend his actions he put his foot in his mouth by saying something very strange, “These projects were ready to go.” 


According to a Daily News report, the NYS State Senate sponsor of a bill to benefit five luxury developments, Republican-Conservative State Senator Martin  Martin Golden  defended these tax breaks, saying the projects would create jobs and boost the economy; adding the bizarre justification, “These projects were ready to go.”    When pressed about the selection of these specific projects and who had decided to give them special treatment,  Golden could not say who selected the five projects for special treatment. Then Golden pleaded ignorance  ---   “I’m not sure where they came from.”  (See "NY lawmakers mandate massive tax breaks for millionaires’ Manhattan apartments" by Daniel Beekman, 6/17/13, NY Daily News [http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/uptown/big-tax-breaks-mandated-millionaires-nyc-digs-article-1.1375297#ixzz2WdRYtCxb]).

Golden was then slammed for the same thing again in a followup piece by the Daily News  ( See "NYC politicians blast ‘galling’ Albany tax deal for luxury apartment towers" by Daniel Beekman & Erin Durkin, 6/18/13, NY Daily News [http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/nyc-politicos-blast-luxury-apartment-tax-deal-article-1.1376393#ixzz2WdcmaAnz]).

The language benefiting these five luxury developments was slipped into an omnibus housing bill that had been pushed by the Bloomberg administrationto to extend tax breaks to hundreds of thousands of low- and middle-income homeowners. The specific language made these five projects eligible for a controversial abatement program called 421-a, which grants tax relief for 10 or 20 years to buildings that set aside 20% of all units for affordable housing, or in some cases sponsor such housing  at other locations.  However, spokesmen for the Bloomberg administration officials denied that they had requested the insertion of the special provision for the five luxury projects.

The now much-criticized  provision in the state housing law made the five posh projects eligible for breaks by waiving a zoning rule blocking them from the abatement program.  Councilwoman Gale Brewer (D-Manhattan) called the provision an “end run” around the Council. “Why did they go to Albany, and why did Albany not ask for (a vote) from the City Council? I think the answer is that the powers that be wanted to bury it in an omnibus bill.”

According to the Daniel Beekman report in the Daily News, "The developers of four of the projects, their relatives and affiliated companies gave $1.5 million to various state campaign committees during 2008-12 — including $440,962 last year, records show....  The contributions included $53,000 to the state Senate Republican campaign treasury, $34,000 to the war chest of Assembly Democrats and $150,000 to the campaign of Gov. Cuomo, who signed the bill Jan. 30.  Jaron Benjamin, president of the Metropolitan Council on Housing made this charge:  “That real estate developers were able to win such a huge giveaway is a reflection of . . . just how broken the current campaign finance system is .... The reason Albany lawmakers agreed to spend millions subsidizing luxury housing for the wealthy is clear: Developers who contributed to their campaigns . . . expected to be rewarded.”

Clearly, neither Golden nor his staff  expected this to blow up at this time, but the story has legs and was quickly picked up by various community media outlets around his district (See "Golden Backs Bill That Provides Massive Tax Breaks For Developers Of Luxury Manhattan Apartment Buildings" by Willie Simpson, 6/18/13, in Sheepshead Bay Bites [http://www.sheepsheadbites.com/2013/06/golden-tax-breaks-developers/] and in Bensonhurst Bean [http://www.bensonhurstbean.com/]).

So far, nobody has asked this question:   What do citizens, constituents and voters in Brooklyn's  22nd State Senate District have to do to get State Senator Martin Golden to do the same kind of  "wheeling and dealing" in Albany's back rooms on their behalf ?

Politicker reports "...Weiner has consistently denied having a sex addition..."

Colin Campbell's "SUGGESTED READING..."  Farrelly Brothers edition ?


Does Weiner have a "Hedwig problem" the way Hedwig had a weiner problem ?


This morning I looked at the  Daily Read in Politicker at about 9:25 AM and saw this, "Anthony Weiner has consistently denied having a sex addition [sic]...." ( "... Morning Read: ‘Addiction Runs Deep’ " by Colin Campbell, 6/18/13, NY Observer/Politicker [http://politicker.com/2013/06/morning-read-addiction-runs-deep/]).  There are just so many things that could be, so I read on. But, soon it became obvioous to me -- it's a misprint [but it was still there as of 10:03 AM].

No doubt, Colin Campbell meant to say that "Anthony Weiner has consistently denied having a sex 'edition'..." in a reference to one of the former congresmman's congressional newsletters or other literature touting his accomplishments , talents and the like.  But, there was nothing that follwed in the piece that indicated that either.

I'm just a little confused about Colin's quote from Buzzfeed, "Addiction runs deep. It takes a lot of time and work,” said [ a sex therapist]. “I get the impression that he sees this as an anomaly, that he’s fine and fixed now. It doesn’t read to me that he is dealing with the issue and problem — he’s just presenting it as a mistake.”   I know  that 'he" refers to Weiner, but what was "broken" and needed to be "fixed"; and what is being presented as a "mistake" ?

Then again, maybe my original assumption that "sexual addition" was a misprint was wrong. Maybe Colin was correctly reporting that Anthony Weiner has had some kind of "sexual addition" and was denying it; or maybe Weiner didn't have any "sexual addition" and felt that he had a need to deny it, anyway.

Maybe, Weiner can clear it all up with some more pictures.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

What's going on with Republican-Conservative Congressman Peter King II

Long Island Republican-Conservative "Big-Brother" Congressman Peter King is getting a well deserved kick in the ass from some of the mainstream media and a few in the routine left American nomenclatura.  


BUT,  where is the proper outrage from the libertarian  Republicans and other conservatives against this ill-conceived  "Republican Defense" of another  Obama agency overstepping  its  bounds against the American people?  Well, there has been a little.


Redstate took Congressman Peter King to the woodshed like this:  "Just when you thought RINO Republicans couldn’t get worse on the first amendment [mentioning Senator Lindsay Graham's ill-chosen remarks on the subject]....   [I]t got even worse.... The arch-hawk and arch-police statist from New York, Congressman Peter King, is calling for the arrest of reporter Glenn Greenwald. ***  Slow down a second…don’t we have an unalienable right called freedom of the press, which happens to be the supreme law of the land? ***  Not according to Peter King, who stated: 'No right is absolute and even the press has certain restrictions'.” (See "Rep. Peter King erroneously calls for arrest of Glenn Greenwald -- No regard for the Constitution" by freedomrepublican (Diary), 6/12/13, Redstate [ttp://www.redstate.com/freedomrepublican/2013/06/12/rep-peter-king-erroneously-calls-for-arrest-of-glenn-greenwald/]).

However, by a wide margin, most of the citicism and contrary opinon to Peter King's modest proposals  comes from the mainstream media or leftward, like some of the following pieces.

King's views on prosecuting newsies made few friends at his hometown daily (See "Peter King's all wet on fixing security leaks" by Ellis Henican, 6/15/13, Newsday [http://www.newsday.com/columnists/ellis-henican/peter-king-s-all-wet-on-fixing-security-leaks-1.5491211]; for those who can't open the Newsday link it's also available at  Ellis Henican's official website {http://henican.com/2013/06/16/king-report-a-leak-get-locked-up/]). According to Henican, "The voluble South Shore Republican, who used to chair the House Committee on Homeland Security, clearly hasn’t lost his bluster since passing on his beloved gavel. ***  As civil libertarians and terror hawks debate the National Security Agency phone-data dragnet, King has found his own pet target. No, not the former government contractor accused of leaking the massive spy program. News reporters who pass along such leaks.... No journalist has ever been successfully prosecuted for publishing classified material. But Fox News reporter James Rosen recently found his way into the crosshairs for reporting secrets from a government source. *** And isn’t that more or less what all good reporters seek to do every day? Keeping the people informed, it used to be called."

The Huffpost said that "King's claim about what Greenwald has threatened to do is, of course, a complete falsehood. There is no record anywhere of Greenwald having made such a threat (nor is there of Snowden)...." (See "Why Is Congressman Peter King Lying About Glenn Greenwald?" by Jonathan Weiler, 6/14/13, Huffington Post [http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jonathan-weiler/why-is-congressman-peter_b_3441867.html]).

Speaking of Edward Snowden, Congressman Peter King has gone from the sublime to the ridiculous with his unsubstantiated accusations. According to Media-ite, Peter King said on MSNBC's Andrea Michell program on Friday afternoon that there’s “a lot of reason” to suspect Snowden’s ties to China — and King questioned what the Chinese may be doing with the revealed information.  “There’s a lot of reason for suspicion,” King asserted on the leftwing cable network;  his list included the following  "facts":  “First of all the fact that he transferred money to China, the fact that he has studied Chinese, the fact that his girlfriend had some connections to China. The fact that, of all the countries in the world, he went to China, and he arranged to have the papers — all his documents — released on the same weekend that President Obama was meeting with the president of China. And why is he still in China? What is Chinese intelligence doing with all this?” (See "‘He Has Studied Chinese’: Rep. Peter King Raises ‘Suspicion’ About NSA Leaker Snowden’s Ties To China" by  Meenal Vamburkar, 6/14/13, Media-ite [http://www.mediaite.com/tv/he-has-studied-chinese-rep-peter-king-raises-suspicion-about-nsa-leaker-snowdens-ties-to-china/]).

The quote of the week about Peter King and his views on national security, the war on terror and the fundamental rights of Americans:  "“Only In America can a renowned and devoted terrorism supporter like Peter King be the arbiter of national security and treason.” That was part of Glenn Greenwald's response to King's initial call for Greenwald's arrest.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Does this seem right to you ? "...Hynes and Seddio Signed Off On Parolees Campaigning For Community Service"

Campaign for Democrats and it will count as time served on your sentence!


According to a Democratic district leader in Brooklyn, that is the message Kings County District Attorney Charles “Joe” Hynes and Kings County Democratic Party boss Frank Seddio are conveying in one assembly district to parolees seeking a way to fulfill community service (See "District Leader Claims Hynes and Seddio Signed Off On Parolees Campaigning For Community Service" by Stephen Witt, 6/13/13 [http://www.cityandstateny.com/district-leader-claims-hynes-and-seddio-signed-off-on-parolees-campaigning-for-community-serv/]).

According to the report in City & State, "New York State Republican Party spokesperson David Laska said he found Collymore’s assertion that Hynes and Seddio had given approval to her initiative hard to believe, but that knowing Democratic politics in Brooklyn, he would not be surprised if it were so."  Does Mr. Laska know that Mr. Hynes is the consensus and likely nominee of the Brooklyn GOP for Brooklyn DA  in 2013 ?

What's going on with Republican-Conservative Congressman Peter King ?

Peter King  —  who seems to be upset that "Too many Republicans and conservatives have become Michael Moore"  —  wants to prosecute a journalist on trumped-up claims 


Congressman Peter King (R-C, Nassau, N.Y.) made waves yesterday during  a Fox News interview in which he called for “legal action” to be taken against Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald. According to the Washington Post, "The congressman’s comments were delivered in his usual stentorian style, with absolute certainty and conviction, even though they appear to lack any factual basis"  (See "Why Peter King’s comments on Greenwald threaten the republic" by Erik Wemple, 6/13/13, Washington Post [http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/erik-wemple/wp/2013/06/13/why-peter-kings-comments-on-greenwald-threaten-the-republic/]).

Has this Republican and Conservative Party favorite from Nassau County gone off the rails completely ? He has already stepped on the Republican talking points on the Fox News - James Rosen -DOJ case;  even worse he has slandered Glenn Greenwald with a blatant lie that Greenwald has threatened  to release the names of CIA Agents.... And perhaps worst of all, he doesn't seem to care as much about the Constitutiton nor know what it means as much as a majority of Americans.

On Wednesday’s broadcast of Fox News Channel’s “America Live,” New York Republican Congressman Peter King said that because of the leaks about the National Security Administration first put forth by the Guardian’s Glenn Greenwald, it may be time to consider prosecuting the journalist. Congressman King thinks that, not only should Edward Snowden be prosecuted as the source of the leaks, but Greenwald as well for threatening to name names of CIA agents ( See "Rep. Peter King: Punish Glenn Greenwald" by  Jeff Poor, 6/12/13, Daily Caller [http://dailycaller.com/2013/06/12/rep-peter-king-punish-glenn-greenwald/#ixzz2W8CZP800]).

Here it is in King's own words: “I’m talking about [ Journalist Glenn] Greenwald.... Greenwald, not only did he disclose this information, he has said that he has names of CIA agents and assets around the world and is threatening to disclose that. The last time that was done in this country, we saw the CIA station chief murdered in Greece. No right is absolute and even the press has certain restrictions. I think it should be very targeted, very selective and a rare exception. In this case, when you have someone to disclose secrets like this and threatens to release more, then that to me — yes, there has to be legal action should be taken against him. This is a very unusual case with life and death implications for Americans....  I agree when it comes to reporters it’s used very sparingly and should be....  But this is a very unusual case. I think the whole case, by the way — it really bothers me seeing so many Republicans and conservatives talking about this  being spying and snooping  [what the NSA did with PRISM and other  programs pursuant to Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) and Section 215 of the Patriot Act]. Too many Republicans and conservatives have become Michael Moore. And I think it’s dangerous to our country. General Alexander is an American patriot. This program is protecting Americans.”

According to the column in WP, "Peter King would make a poor journalist. May he never, ever complain about being quoted out of context [which he has done freely wrt  Edward Snowden and Glenn Greenwald]. ***  [Peter King's] words yesterday don’t speak to his acumen as a public servant, either. As argued previously in [The Washington Post], the recent explosion of leak news has highlighted the centrality of governmental self-restraint in preserving freedoms. Laws and guidelines can do only so much...."

The recent Obama Administration scandals clearly demonstrate that this Chief  Executive and his entire Executive Branch of the U.S. Government is thoroughly lacking in self-restraint. Equally distressing is the seeming inability of either chamber of congress to perform even a modicum of the oversight necessary to impose even minimal restraint on the Executive. Now, in the face of the current NSA disclosures, things appear to be even worse than previously assumed, when somebody like Peter King so quickly jumps to a very questionable defense of some very problematic activity by an Obama-driven NSA.

I have to agree with the Post writer's concluding remark, " Amid patent examples of government overreach, [Republican-Conservative Congressman Peter King] is cheerleading for more overreach."

Paladino Predicts "God-Like" Andrew Cuomo’s political "Demise" over NY's hasty Gun Law --- Promises more GOP primaries for "...sitting Republicans who aren't doing their jobs..."

Paladino, a gun owner, starts by telling interviewer that he would not be abiding by the recent anti-gun laws  ---  and finishes by promising Republican primaries against RINOs

Continued political activism by GOP firebrand Carl Paladino very bad news for Dean Skelos and Marty Golden


Carl Paladino spoke yesterday on YNN’s Capital Tonight program ( See "SHOTS FIRED - Carl Paladino Predicts ‘God-Like’ Andrew Cuomo’s Demise" by Jill Colvin 6/12/13, NY Observer/Politicker [http://politicker.com/2013/06/carl-paladino-predicts-god-like-andrew-cuomos-demise/]).

Mr. Paladino had been in Albany yesterday to protest the SAFE Act, Governor Cuomo's signal piece of gun control legislation, which put a raft of new regulations on the ownership, use and sale of firearms in New York State.  Cuomo's  SAFE Act was passed as part of a cave-in in the GOP controlled State Senate in  a wave of hysteria immediately following the Sandy Hook shootings in Connecticutt.  Paladino believes various aspects of the Safe Act are unconstitutional , and that they will be overturned in federal court.

Paladino, a gun owner, began telling the interviewer, Liz Benjamin, that he. himself,  would be not abiding by the legislation. However, when asked specifically which provisions of the SAFE Act he was flouting, he went silent....  Then he acknowledged that he was indeed limiting  the number of bullets in his clips and magazines; and declared, “I’m a person who advocates compliance with good laws.”

Never known for mincing words, he hammered Governor Andrew Cuomo as “self-absorbed” and “egotistical;  and then Paladino declared that Cuomo's SAFE Act gun legislation would be the biggest factor leading  to his demise as governor of New York State.  This is the way the former candidate for governor put it to Mr. Cuomo:  “We have a higher law in this land. People who are God-like, like Cuomo—this deity thing—they don’t believe in rules, they don’t believe in the Constitution. Well, we believe in the Constitution.”  Mr. Paladino finished the thought  by thanking the governor “for giving us this opportunity to unify and have a common issue that will eventually result in his demise from politics.”

The former gubernatorial candidate also raised the often-repeated criticism, about the secretive manner in which Mr. Cuomo passed his landmark anti-gun legislation.  The chosen process gave neither the public nor  lawmakers much of chance to consider all of the gun control legislation’s language or its impact and implications. In the instance of the hasty passage of the SAFE Act, Mr. Cuomo had signed a special order called a message of necessity, which allowed the legislature to expedite its passage of the controversial bill.  Paladino then lambasted his former opponent some more.  “What is wrong with this man? ...  The people are entitled to better than that … They’re entitled to have an opportunity to have it vetted and to comment on it. And that’s the nonsense. That’s the infringement—if you want to call it –the terrible infringement upon the basic rights of the people of this country. He’s so self-absorbed, he’s so egotistical that we went out there and made this huge mistake that’s going to be the end of his career.”

Despite the harsh words for Mr. Cuomo, Mr. Paladino emphasized that he wouldn’t be making another run for governor himself.  And his remarks weren't just critical of the governor.  Carl Paladino had lots to say about the New York State Republican party.

The Buffalo Republican activist and school board member started by describing the NYS GOP as being in a state of disarray.  According to Paladino, “We have so man RINOs [Republicans in name only] around in this party that we can’t really identify the good Republicans from the bad Republicans.” Then he vowed to continue using his cash to fund primary challenges against sitting Republicans he feels aren’t doing their jobs. “We have no opposition. And that’s why we have rampant corruption in our government.”

When Carl Paladino talks about funding primary races against RINO Republicans and sitting Republicans who aren't doing their jobs, a Dean Skelos favorite, State Senator Martin Golden, has to be high on Paladino's list.

If only there were a solid pro-Second Amendment Republican somewhere in Brooklyn's 22nd SD to take a run at Golden -- that and some Paladino cash could make a very interesting summer in 2014.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Social Conservative mayoral candidate, Erick Salgado, hyped on CBS series about Brooklyn GOP candidate for DA - Joe Hynes

There was a brief segment that featured the Reverend Erick Salgado last night on the reality series "Brooklyn D.A." ---  so, it looks like City Council Candidate Joseph Hayon is not the only Brooklyn GOP contact with the mayoral candidacy of Erick Salgado


Since the name of  Brooklyn DA Charles Hynes appears on petitions now being circulated by the two main factions of the Brooklyn GOP, I think it's fair to call him the candidate of the Brooklyn GOP. And, since I have often spoken favorably about the mayoral candidacy of the socially conservative Democrat Erick Salgado, I was happy to see the Reverend Salgado featured in the CBS reality law program, "Brooklyn D.A." on Tuesday night. Both Messrs. Salgado and Hynes are strong law and order candidates and are both running for their respective offices in the Democratic Primary. Unfortunately, Reverend Salgado did not get a Wilson-Pakula from the GOP, even though Joseph Hayon did try to get the Brooklyn Chairman to push for it; so of these two fine office seekers only Charles "Joe" Hynes will appear on the GOP line.

The Reverend Salgado appeared in his role of a hands -on pastor in Bensonhurst, ministering to the needs of a berieved family and witnessing to the "miracle" of a surviving child. According to the ADA on the case, Reverend Salgado also is seeking justice for the family and helping the Brooklyn DA with the case. This not the only "religious" aspect of the case, the defense is also playing the religion card. It  all comes out in connection with a part of the reality program about an arson-murder prosecution of a man that also had a hand in trying to save the child and the other victims of a fire. Even though it is alleged and appears  that he "admitted" starting the fire in a mixed  commercial and residential building in Bensonhurst, part of his explanation is that he was influenced drink and by the devil.

For those who might have missed the reality show about the Brooklyn DA's office  last night, a link to a clip of the Salgado segment is included in Colin Campbell's  "Morning Read" for June 12, 2013 (See "SUGGESTED READING - Morning Read: ‘New York’s Legislators Outshine Their Peers’ " by Colin Campbell, 6/12/13, Politicker [http://politicker.com/2013/06/morning-read-new-yorks-legislators-outshine-their-peers/]).

Monday, June 10, 2013

The DIANE HASLETT-RUDIANO factor — is the spin just starting ?

Diane Haslett-Rudiano is the Board of Election’s chief clerk in Brooklyn and a Brooklyn GOP District Leader  —  the recent news reports of the scandalous condition of an UWS Manhattan brownstone to which she is the titled owner raise many questions  —  but not about her


"Qui Prodest"  —  Who benefits?



Today, Celeste Katz posted and “enhanced version” of her story that appeared in yesterday’s Sunday News (See “NYC Board Of Elections Official Lets Landmark Building Rot On Upper West Side” by Celeste Katz, 6/10/13, Daily News/Daily Politics [http://www.nydailynews.com/blogs/dailypolitics/2013/06/nyc-board-of-elections-official-lets-landmark-building-rot-on-upper-west-side]). According to the sub-headline of the Daily News’ top daily scribe on local and state politics, “A top [ ] Board of Elections official has let a landmark brownstone she owns on the upper West Side become a neighborhood nightmare.” The article/post goes on to describe how Community leaders have spent years pleading with Diane Haslett-Rudiano, Chief Clerk of  the NYC Board of Elections in Brooklyn, to do something about a vacant and decrepit townhouse located at 118 W. 76th Street in Manhattan, to which she is the owner of record. According to the Celeste Katz report, a neighbor named  Kristine Reynal calls the dilapidated building a health concern and a safety concern and said that: “I am horrified that this public figure is so negligent and disrespectful.” —  And obviously high on Celeste Katz list of important factors: “City Councilwoman Gale Brewer (D-Manhattan) has repeatedly phoned Haslett-Rudiano and her bosses at the Board of Elections to complain, to no avail. ***  ‘She is a very bad example of home ownership (and) public servant responsiveness. She’s not somebody who should be either owning property or, in my opinion, (be a supervisor) of the Board of Elections,’ Brewer said.”

Then the coverage of Ms. Rudiano veers off into something completely different, “In 2005, the city Department of Investigations unearthed evidence that she lived in Queens while being registered to vote and serving as a Republican district leader in Brooklyn. ***  The Board of Elections took no action, however, after her lawyer presented unspecified documents that were never made public.”

My main question is why is this story breaking now ?  The article/post suggests the very same question when it points out that the president of the West 76th Street Block Association, Judith Bronfman, says she has heard it all before. So I reiterate   —   WHY IS THIS STORY BREAKING NOW ?  and  WHY IS IT A POLITICAL STORY ?

Connect the dots, folks, connect the dots...

Somebody is trying to force Diane Rudiano out of the Board of Elections ASAP.
Now, who could that be ?  Could it be Craig Eaton who would have no hand in selecting a replacement ?  Not likely....

Connect the dots, folks, connect the dots...

Could it be Marty Golden or somebody very close to Golden with somebody new in mind for the spot ?  Somebody like, let's say who has the first name "Georgia" and a very ethnic-sounding last name beginning with a "K" ?   Hmmm, getting warmer.... [Well, I have that on the best authority from one of my Baker Streeters....]

Connect the dots, folks, connect the dots...

Let's see ....  Simon Shamoun is a new GOP Commissioner at the Board of Elections replacing Eaton’s commissioner Nancy Mattola-Schacter. Shimoun was handpicked to be State Senator Martin Golden’s man on the BOE. Golden hasn’t liked the way the Brooklyn GOP has been run under Eaton and before that under Hy Singer.  Diane Haslett-Rudiano has been a top GOP BOE employee and close to the Brooklyn GOP leadership for a very long time. As you can see, this connect the dots game gets really NASTY,  really fast.... especially, when somebody is waiting in the wings.

If you see any other dots or can connect them any other way, please let me know.   

Benghazi and other Obama Scandals Taking Wind Out of Hillary’s Sails

New polling finds Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton continues with strong marks from the American public  —  BUT  —   lingering headlines over 9/11 Benghazi attack, amid other Obama scandals, have started to take a toll on Democrat front-runner for President in 2016


A Bloomberg National Poll shows that, even though Hillary Clinton hasn’t said that she’ll be running  for president in 2016, the pre-campaign pounding by the combined GOP, Fox News and other right wing opposition is already having some impact. Former Secretary of State Clinton’s political standing is declining since her January “Benghazi” testimony before Congress after months of criticism of  her handling of all things related to Benghazi



This interesting teaser came from  Liz Benjamin’s “TW2” post in yesterday's Capital Tonight: “Hillary Clinton’s favorability rating has fallen”; it set me off on a trail of reports and articles about Hillary Clinton’s recent polling numbers (See “The Weekend That Was” by Liz Benjamin, 6/9/13, YNN Capital Tonight [http://capitaltonightny.ynn.com/2013/06/the-weekend-that-was-145/]).
Benjamin’s tidbit links to a terse CNN report quoting a pair of polls by Bloomberg and Quinnipiac.


According to CNN, a Bloomberg Poll released last Friday and a recent Quinnipiac University survey both indicated Clinton's favorable rating had gone down since she testafied at the Benghazi hearings [and the other emergent Obama scandals have muddied the waters] (See “Poll: Hillary Clinton's favorable rating dips”  Posted by CNN Political Unit, 6/7/13
[http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2013/06/07/poll-hillary-clintons-favorable-rating-dips/comment-page-1/]). Friday’s Bloomberg Poll indicated a fall-off of 12 percentage points since  December to 58% of Americans saying they have a positive view of the former first lady and senator from New York; during the same time, the proportion of those who say they have a very unfavorable view of Hillary Clinton has doubled to 22% from 11%.  A recent Quinnipiac poll showed a drop in Clinton's favorabity rating of nine percentage points from 61% to 52%.

That information was also reported on Friday in a WSJ feature along with WSJ/NBC polling that also contained some other bad news for Hillary from the Bloomberg Poll: “The Bloomberg poll found that 47% disapprove of Mrs. Clinton’s handling of Benghazi, while 34% approve.” (See “Hillary Clinton’s Ratings Slip in Bloomberg Poll” by Rebecca Ballhaus, 6/7/13, Wall Street Journal [http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2013/06/07/hillary-clintons-ratings-slip-in-bloomberg-poll/]).
That piece also indicated that recent polling was very good news for those thinking about Chris Christie’s future as a presidential candidate.

Needless to say it was Bloomberg News that was the pacesetter on this story, and was ahead of the pack and the principal engine driving it in the three-to-four day news cycle over the weekend ( See “Clinton Slips in Poll After Benghazi Hits, Christie’s Up” by John McCormick, 6/6/13 [http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-06-07/clinton-slips-in-poll-after-benghazi-hits-christie-s-up.html]).

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Carl Paladino and Jeanine Pirro set to speak out against Governor Cuomo’s so-called SAFE Act at “Civil Disobedience Rally” at the statehouse in Albany

Gun-rights advocates will rally at the New York State Capitol on Tuesday and are expected to call for law-enforcement officials to disobey portions of New York’s recently enacted  S.A.F.E. Act gun-control law


According to one report, “Assemblyman Bill Nojay, R-Pittsford, Monroe County, said the noon event outside the Capitol will rally law-enforcement officials and other public leaders to reject compliance with the law, which has been championed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo” (See “Rally to promote “civil disobedience” of SAFE Act” by Joseph Spector, 6/7/13, Journal News/lohudblogs [“http://statepolitics.lohudblogs.com/2013/06/07/rally-to-promote-civil-disobedience-of-safe-act/]).

Along with Assemblyman Bill Nojay, the scheduled speakers at Tuesday’s the rally are expected to include the following: Dan Bongino, a former NYPD Police Officer  and Secret Service Agent and the Maryland GOP’s nominee for U.S. Senate last year, who now has his eye on Maryland’s 6th Congressional District; Jeanine Pirro, a Fox News television host and a former Westchester County District Attorney; and Carl Paladino, a Buffalo businessman and current member of the Buffalo School Board, who ran for governor in 2010 and succeeded in winning the New York State GOP primary for that office, then losing to Governor Cuomo in the general election.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Not much going on, other than for those busy, busy busy with petitioning — unfortunately, here’s a little example of somebody's goings-on...

Jerry Kassar’s recent puff piece for his boss, State Senator Martin Golden, was published recently in Kassar’s “Common Sense” column in the Home Reporter entitled  “... Saluting our heroes”  —   it left us sadly wondering  —  "Is that all there is ?"


Here is the part of Kassar’s column about Golden: “...State Senator Marty Golden, whom I serve as chief of staff, is completing a very successful legislative year from the perspective of bills authored, passed and signed into law by the governor. ***  The senator’s bills include a wide range of items  that deal with everything from economic development to job creation, many strong anti-crime bills and even a few election law proposals that will make this year’s mayoral primary possible. ***  As the first chairperson of a new committee that deals with science and technology, the senator is being asked to discuss cutting-edge business incubator proposals around the state. ***  He is the author of several important pieces of legislation that help level the playing field for New York State businesses that come into competition with foreign enterprises that receive government subsidies by giving the New York business certain preferences.  This keeps jobs and revenue in our state.  And it should come as no surprise that he has been a central player in all Sandy-related reform proposals. ***  The senator has become a constant presence in newspapers and TV discussing his proposals as well as the many actions of the legislature.  This is a refreshing change from the many negative stories that have been written in recent months about legislative scandals involving both houses although mostly one party – the Democratic Party” (See “Common Sense: Saluting our heroes” by Jerry Kassar, 6/3/13, Home Reporter/Spectator [http://www.homereporternews.com/opinion/columnists/common-sense-saluting-our-heroes/article_e0d069b2-cc9f-11e2-befa-0019bb2963f4.html]).

Let’s forget about Kassar’s complete lack of taste or sense of appropriateness in devoting more than half of his Memorial Day column, “... Saluting our Heroes,” to a puffing job on his boss.  Does he really believe that any of what he wrote about his boss' record  “... is a refreshing change from the many negative stories that have been written in recent months about legislative scandals involving both houses ... ?”

Far from being refreshing, Kassar’s words made me feel profoundly melancholy, even morose. No matter how hard he huffed and puffed, all that Kassar could manage was insubstantial and faint praise. His words put me in mind of something like the last few lines of one of Peggy Lee’s later songs:

SPOKEN:
I know what you must be saying to yourselves,
if that's the way he feels about it why doesn't he just end it all?
Oh, no, not me. I'm in no hurry for that final disappointment,
for I know just as well as I'm standing here talking to you,
when that final moment comes and I'm breathing my last breath, I'll be saying to myself

SUNG:
Is that all there is, is that all there is
If that's all there is my friends, then let's keep dancing
Let's break out the booze and have a ball
If that's all there is

Friday, June 7, 2013

Dueling Scandals — NYS Democrat Chairman turns tables on NYS GOP Chairman Cox — Demands that Cox come clean on his part in the State Senator Malcolm Smith’s alleged attempt to “buy” a GOP Wilson-Pekula for a shot at the GOP’s mayoral line

In reply to the NYS GOP Chairman’s renewed demand that the Governor Cuomo appoint a Special Prosecutor to look into Shelley Silverman’s involvement in the Vito Lopez scandal, the Democrats' NYS party leadership countered with a declaration that GOP Chairman Cox has yet to “tell all that he knows” about the Malcolm Smith scandal  —  In the Brooklyn GOP leadership contest, a flare-up of this scandal would not be beneficial to the Eaton faction


According to reports on the Capital Tonight blog, the whole thing started early on Friday when State Republican Chairman Ed Cox repeated his call for a special prosecutor to take a look at Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver’s handling of the Vito Lopez sexual harassment case (See “Cox Once Again Calls For Special Prosecutor” by Nick Reisman, 6/7/13, YNN Capital Tonight [http://capitaltonightny.ynn.com/2013/06/cox-once-again-calls-for-special-prosecutor/]).


Later in the day, New York State Democratic Committee Executive Director Rodney Capel countered Cox’ comments about the Democratic Party scandals with those involving Republicans; specifically mentioning Ed Cox’ possible involvement in the Malcolm Smith controversy, as follows: “Ed Cox took the wrong lessons from the Nixon playbook....  Cox should stop ranting and raving and answer for any involvement he may have had in the plot to sell the Republican nomination for Mayor. It’s not too late for Mr. Cox to do the right thing – he should come clean about any knowledge he may have had of the bribery and corruption scandal that has gripped his party. What did he know, and when did he know it? If he knew about it and looked the other way, he should resign immediately.” (See “Capel Drops A Nixon, Ties Cox To Smith” by Nick Reisman, 6/7/13 YNN Capital Tonight Blog [http://capitaltonightny.ynn.com/2013/06/capel-drops-a-nixon-ties-cox-to-smith/]).

Although it is unlikely that yesterday’s mention of the Malcolm Smith scandal by Rodney Capel alone will revive it as a top story. It does show that it wouldn’t take much to get the story back into the news. If the past is any guide, locally that would not do any good for the side that is supporting John Catsimatidis, the GOP Organization team of Craig Eaton.

LIBERTARIAN ALERT — State Senator Golden votes for the Arbitrary and Capricious Law Enforcement Act — among other things, making it a FELONY to ANNOY a POLICE OFFICER by tapping him or her on the shoulder to get his or her attention

Yesterday State Senator Golden and a majority of New York State Senators voted for the "Police State and Jack Booted Thuggery In New York State Enabling Act"  —  The passed Senate Bill, S-2402, would make it a felony for any citizen in New York State to try to protect themselves against acts of police brutality


As one local paper put it, “Well, this could be a mess: the New York State Senate passed a bill today that makes annoying a police officer a felony, punishable by up to four years in prison. Meaning, punching a cop—albeit with tiny, ineffectual fists—might soon be on par with poking one a few times, or stepping on an officer's heels while walking behind him. That's the annoying-est.” (See “Annoying A Cop Might Soon Be A Crime, Says NY State Senate” by Rebecca Fishbein, 6/6/13, Gothamist [http://gothamist.com/2013/06/06/annoying_a_police_officer_might_soo.php]).

The proposed legislation [S-2402-2013]  —  states one is guilty of "aggravated harassment" of an officer when "with the intent to harass, annoy, threaten, or alarm...he or she strikes, shoves, kicks or otherwise subjects such a person to physical contact"  —   is quite vague and is doubtless something that will lend itself to arbitrary and capricious enforcement.  What can “...otherwise subjects such a person to physical contact...” possibly mean ?

JUST ABOUT ANYTHING THAT A COP,  A DISTRICT ATTORNEY AND A JUDGE SAYS  THAT IT MEANS !

This is bad legislation for anybody who cares about civil liberties in a free society.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

How some of the “Insiders” see the Golden-Eaton Feud — First of a multi-part series of related and unrelated analyses by various “Insiders” in and near that “...Feud”

One is kinda young, one is kinda old, one is analytic and one is kinda bold....


These first four interviews are with Republican insiders who at one time or another have functioned as part of my team of “Baker Street Irregulars.” I neither agree nor disagree with most of what they say, but I do think a lot of it is either obvious or probable; you judge for yourself. Some of them contradict the others. And, even some of the stranger things they say or might suggest are at least in the realm of the possible.

The first Republican activist to whom I spoke is different than the rest. He prefers not to say which way he is leaning at present, but he did say that he is open to vote with the Golden supported “Republicans for Change” if it makes sense to do that at the time of the GOP County Convention.

His key observation about this feud as a political contest is that neither side seems to be as organized for this “fight” as they should be going into petitioning. He says that he has spoken to representatives of both the Golden and Eaton sides; and he says that neither side was able to make meaningful  commitments to him and his people in the AD where he is active in GOP politics. The longtime activist said that he intends to run both for Republican County Committee and another position in 2013; and he hoped that he could run on a slate that he could support from top to bottom, but it’s possible that he might not be behind the mayoral candidate on his petitions 100%. He said, “Remember, there is no name for GOP County Chairman on any of the petitions, so that stays open for every elected County Committee member right up to when the September Convention is held.”

He thinks that the struggle for the GOP County leadership is more about personalities and ego than substantive issues, since neither Golden nor Eaton have a strong ideology or political philosophy. “They both say they’re conservative Republicans” so it’s not about differences of ideology, issues or political philosophy that have split these guys apart. Because of his recent communications with/from Golden and Eaton, he says that he will reserve his right “to make a final decision on who to back in their “WAR” until after the primary in September... I will base my vote at the Republican County Convention on the actions of Golden and Eaton, and those people who I know are their agents, between now and the convention. It will be all about real actions not words ...”

The second, who is a long-time GOP leader and activist said, “I couldn’t care less about giving a description or definition of this ‘fight’ between Eaton and Golden.” Even though they look like they are opposing each other, right now  —  “...they are both perpetuating the same divisiveness inside the Republican Party that started after Eaton became leader in 2007....  The only thing that’s different now is that they are each separately pursuing their personal interests without the other’s support....  This all happened at this time, because Marty Golden is trying to perpetuate his State Senate seat and wants a county leader that will do that for him to the exclusion of all other matters that are important to the survival of the Brooklyn Republican Party.”

This long-time Republican sees both Eaton and Golden as bad for the Republican Party in Brooklyn because both of them are working only towards their personal agendas. “Look at what they did this year endorsing candidates for mayor,” said the veteran Republican who has known both Eaton and Golden for a long time.  “Golden went with Lhota, a liberal Giuliani-style Republican who went to Mike Long the Conservative Party Chairman and made a deal before the Brooklyn Republicans had picked a candidate. Eaton backed two different liberal candidates for mayor who had a history of backing Barack Obama: first Adolfo Carrion a liberal Democrat who was part of the Obama Administration and then the liberal Republican John Catsimatidis, who supported President Obama and made donations to the Obama campaign. This Republican expects to be uncommitted to either Golden or Eaton right up to the Brooklyn GOP County Convention in September 2013

The third Republican is more an independent and active outsider than he is a GOP insider; he is also the youngest of the Republicans that I interviewed for this post. Nonetheless, he completely supports the re-election of Craig Eaton as the Kings County Republican Chairman. According to this independent community activist, who expects to be elected to the GOP County Committee, “I think that Craig Eaton has tried to build the Brooklyn Republican Party and almost at every step, Marty Golden has stopped him.” He then described how Craig Eaton was supportive of efforts to expand into the Russian and Orthodox Jewish areas of Brooklyn; and that when Marty Golden was in a position to make it possible to have two Republican State Senate seats in Brooklyn, he supported the Republican State Senate leadership that had other plans.” Making things worse, according to this young Republican, Golden and the State Senate leadership wants to control many other Brooklyn GOP activities even when they don’t involve state senate seats. “One elected Republican officeholder shouldn’t be running the whole Republican Party  — for a long time Golden has had approval over GOP candidates for other elected offices, both inside and outside his senate district, now he wants to control the county and the district leaders too.”  Not only does Eaton oppose that, most of the district leaders oppose it as well.

Our last insider for today’s post has very strong opinions about all of this, but said focusing on Golden and/or Eaton and their personalities and quirks would be a big mistake. Even though this long-time GOP leader and activist agrees that what is personally driving these two men into their very personal political confrontation is closer to something about egos  than something philosophical or ideological, or even about practical differences about how to run the Brooklyn GOP.

As a high Eaton insider, he clearly believes that this was largely the result of a few firebrands who simultaneously stoked Staten Senator Martin Golden’s ambitions and insecurities. They played on the state senator’s insecurity by saying that his poor election showing in 2012 was do primarily to a failure of a GOP County organization that Golden had no hand in, rather than failures that were uniquely his own, or his friends and allies, or those of his staff and retainers. AND they played on his ambition by playing up Golden’s necessary role in rebuilding a small part of the Brooklyn GOP, and to participate along with a new team to rebuild the statewide GOP behind somebody like Joe Lhota, especially if Lhota  by some fluke were to win the mayor’s office in 2013. The details of their advice and/or cajoling of State Senator Martin Golden is less important than the bottom line  —  those who advised Golden to take on this fight in 2013 be they staff members and paid advisors, and/or bigger-time players in the NYS Republican and Conservative Parties did not serve Golden well.

This key Eaton supporter said,  “It’s astounding how poorly advised Marty Golden has been in ALL of this  —  all of the practical downside is to Marty Golden and to those who closely identify with his side.... Even if Golden beats Eaton soundly at the GOP County Convention in September 2013, it will result in a net loss to Golden inside the small world of Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights and Bensonhurst Republican politics particularly within the boundaries of the 22nd S.D....  The damage to the Marty Golden brand inside his bedrock Republican base is irreparable in the short run, certainly it won’t get fixed in time for the primary and general elections of 2014.... If State Senator Martin Golden had trouble getting good Republican signatures in 2012, watch what happens to him in 2014....  Anybody and everybody who advised State Senator Golden to do this in 2013 should have their heads examined." [UNLESS, of course, those advisers really wanted to see Marty Golden finished in GOP politics after 2014.  Note: this is my remark not this interviewee's]

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

IN THE NEWS: The National Organization for Marriage — very busy on back-to-back days — attacks against some Democrats, aid and comfort for others, criticism of some Conservatives and Republicans, and testimony about an IRS link with a liberal pro-gay group

NOM’s Chairman testifying in Congress tied IRS leaks of the NOM’s donor lists to a specific liberal group, [the pro-gay] Human Rights Campaign  —  One day after the NOM’s President and NOM NY PAC formally endorsed a Democrat candidate for Mayor of NYC, Erick Salgado, and pounded Mike Long’s Conservative Party for endorsing Joe Lhota, a Republican


While John Eastman, the Chairman of the National Organization for Marriage, was testifying Tuesday at a hearing before the House Ways and Means Committee that his organization has proof that the IRS leaked confidential donor details last year, calling for prosecution into what he described as a "felony" —  news was spreading around New York City of that organization’s president Brian Brown’s  endorsement of Erick Salgado for mayor; and that Brown had made a very critical statement about the Conservative Party’s endorsement in the mayoral race

According to Fox News, “Eastman testified Tuesday alongside several Tea Party activists who all claim they were targeted by the IRS. The Tea Party groups offered a first-hand account of how the IRS singled them out when they applied for tax-exempt status, asking them onerous questions and dragging out their application process. ***.But Eastman shed light on another potential controversy involving the IRS -- the unauthorized disclosure of tax document information....”

The President of NOM gave detailed testimony as to how information on their donors was leaked last year and published on the website of the Human Rights Campaign.. According to Eastman, the HRC is the "principal political opponent" of the National Organization of Marriage on the issue of same-sex marriage. When asked by Congressman Paul Ryan, if he had "proof" that it was the IRS that leaked that specific material, Eastman said that he did. Eastman then testified that while some information was redacted in the posted version, his group's "forensic" specialists were able to determine that "the original document that was posted [by the HRC] had originated from within the IRS.[the HRC version] had "internal IRS stamps," which "only exist within the IRS."

According to the President of the National Organization for Marriage, “The [IRS-HRC] effort seems to have been designed to subject our donors to abuse, to intimidation and more significantly for our purposes to chill them from donating again so we can keep up the political fight that we're in the middle of.”

Still making news from the day before, many on the right in New York City politics, especially in the Conservative Party and parts of the GOP, also were surprised yesterday by the spread of the NOM’s  announcement of its endorsement of Democrat Erick Salgado for mayor. "NOM is proud to endorse a candidate who has the courage to stand up for conservative principles and join us in our support of traditional marriage," NOM President Brian Brown said  (See “National Organization for Marriage NY PAC Endorses Erick Salgado for NYC Mayor” release contact Elizabeth Ray or Jen Campbell, 6/3/13   [http://www.nomblog.com/]).

Almost as significant were the NOM’s comments about the leadership [Mike Long and Jerry Kassar] of the Conservative Party. The headline of its release late Monday, “Question Conservative Party Endorsement of Candidate ‘Excited’ to Perform Gay Marriages” showed more than a little displeasure about Mike Long’s endorsement Monday of Joseph Lhota, one of the three liberal-style Republicans running for the mayoral nomination in the GOP primary.

My discussions with a local NOM activist indicated that there might be some continued efforts by him and others to put more pressure on the Conservative Party leadership to do the right thing between now and the GOP and Democrat Party, and possibly Conservative Party,  primaries in September.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

“FIGHTIN' WORDS – Michael Grimm Calls Domenic Recchia a ‘Pathetic Political Hack’”

“Indeed, in a blistering, 5-paragraph statement tearing into Mr. Recchia, the Staten Island Republican [also] called Mr. Recchia a ... ‘complete empty suit’ and ‘another hypocritical, career politician … void of an original thought.’"


That series of particular quotes were the highlights, out of about five paragraphs of Grimm’s obviously heart-felt remarks about his most likely 2014 adversary, which were quoted in a Monday post that appeared in Politicker (See “FIGHTIN' WORDS  –  Michael Grimm Calls Domenic Recchia a ‘Pathetic Political Hack’”
by Colin Campbell, 6/3/13, NY Observer/Politicker [http://politicker.com/2013/06/michael-grimm-calls-domenic-recchia-a-pathetic-political-hack/]), with similar coverage in most of the dailies, including the Advance. Grimm’s derogatory comments were in response to a jibe by Recchia; that first was reported in the Yeshiva World News and the whole exchange between Grimm and Recchia was prompted by an article that had appeared in the NY Post involving Grimm’s refusal to support a bill to exempt a 9/11 First Responders Compensation Fund from the current sequester.

Mr. Grimm had better up his game ASAP; or else, he will be having a very long and hard time with Mr. Recchia  from now until November 2014.

In other words, the Republican congressman for Staten Island and the western tip of Brooklyn didn’t do very well in this exchange at all.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Conservative Party completely sells out conservatism and endorses liberal Republican Joseph Lhota to be mayor of NYC — Mike Long calls it a "glimmer of hope"

Brushing aside differences on  gay rights and abortion, New York State Conservative Party Chairman Michael Long today said, "This is a not a race about social issues"


The visual effect of Long and Lhota’s standing in front of City Hall with a very small contingent from what’s left of Long’s party is  one word  —   PATHETIC !


According to Dan Rubenstein in a post on “Capital...”   “The Conservative Party's endorsement of the former M.T.A. chairman and Rudy Giuliani aide comes despite significant policy differences between the two. ***  Long fought against same-sex marriage in New York State, while Lhota supports at both the state and national level. Long opposes marijuana legalization, which Lhota supports, and abortion rights (see “New York Conservatives Endorse Joe Lhota, Their ‘glimmer of hope’” by Dana Rubenstein [http://www.capitalnewyork.com/article/politics/2013/06/8530623/new-york-conservatives-endorse-joe-lhota-their-glimmer-hope]).

As a result of Long’s move, >>> IF <<< [oops !!!  very important correction 4:09 PM EDT] Lhota loses the Republican Party primary to John Catsimatidis, Lhota would still be able to run for mayor on the Conservative Party line.  In adddition, Lhota said today, that he is committed to going forward with the Conservatives even if he loses the primary. Dismissing the possibility of losing the Republican Party primary, Lhota said, "I will be running in November on the Conservative Party line.... "

Sunday, June 2, 2013

GOP candidate for City Council in the 46th Counc. Dist. Is “Settled” — BUT [you heard it here first] this candidacy might well become very “UNSETTLING” to others in the Brooklyn GOP very soon

So far, this has been the long and the short of it  —  “Anthony Testaverde Running For City Council!”


According to a Gene Berardelli’s report, “Anthony Testaverde, the Republican District Leader from the 41st Assembly District, announced his candidacy for City Council for the 46th Council District” (See “Anthony Testaverde Running For City Council!” by Gene Berardelli, 5/30/13, Brooklyn GOP Radio -Official- Show Blog [http://brooklyngopradio.blogspot.com/2013/05/anthony-testaverde-running-for-city.html]). Berardelli goes on to say that “Testaverde promises that his campaign is ready to hit the ground running.  ‘My team is ready to hit the streets.  This is the start of something good’.”

Maybe  —  Maybe NOT ! ! !

My GOP sources close to Chairman Craig Eaton and even to Gene Berardelli, who is one of Eaton’s apparachiks, aren’t nearly so sanguine. You see, given the current state of the Brooklyn GOP,  with State Senator Golden’s rump caucus, “Republicans for Change,” trying to wreck the already shaky Republican Party apparatus; advancing a man like Anthony Testaverde is, at best, problematic and, at worst, it is clearly misguided and downright threatening.

Already conflicted in his loyalties between his Brooklyn GOP leadership and his NY State Senate employer, Testaverde’s selection as a City Council candidate introduces a new layer of conflicted impulses. Anthony Testaverde becomes the second City Council candidate in 2013 to emerge from the Marty Golden stable of war horses, joining John Quaglione into the fray for the NYC Council.  Together with that, Testaverde is the GOP district leader in the 41st A.D., an area that overlaps both the 44th Counc. Dist. and the 22nd State Senate Dist. of Testaverde’s employer, State Senator Martin Golden.

Which pull or influence will be the stronger upon Testaverde as he goes forward as the 2013 candidate for City Council for the 46th Counc. Dist.?  And, why are Eaton and company so confident of this guy’s bona fides ?

History and biography tell an interesting tale about Anthony Testaverde. The most important single item on his resume is the one that is the most recent and up to date  —  that he works for State Senator Martin Golden and along with the rest of Golden’s staff.  If you want to see what that means in the hic and nic; by his own admission, he placed himself at the “Republicans for Change” event at Gargiulo’s last Thursday  —   “... because I had to be there....”  Enough said about that !  Now, I’m hearing that “because he is a GOP candidate for the City Council, he says that he intends to be neutral [in the leadership fight between his political leader, Eaton, and his boss, Golden]...,  and he has even suggested that he probably “...won’t even go to the convention in September....”  —   “neutral” —  yeah, right !   Until somebody yanks on the leash, and then Mr. T will be saying,   “[Blah, blah, blah] ...because I had to....”

Perhaps the real measure on Testaverde might be something that is more a biographical-historical item that something he might put on his resume or into his political literature.  Oddly, it might be the one item in his personal political history where his personal loyalty really shines out  —  this is about various things that are related to one – George Smith.

Several years ago, in 2008 and 2009, Anthony Testaverde was in the middle of a fiasco surrounding the attempt to mount a “Mr. Smith goes to City Hall” campaign on behalf of one  —  George Smith. History overtook both Testaverde and Smith, who had long been familiar to Testaverde. As the head of the GOP candidate search committee, Testaverde had brought Smith to several local GOP leaders and together "they vetted George Smith" to be the GOP candidate for City Council in the 39th  Counc. Dist.; and he was endorsed as the GOP organization candidate. Thereafter, Anthony Testaverde filed with the NYC Campaign Finance Board as the Treasurer of the committee known as the “Friends of George Smith” and began the process of obtaining matching funds. Do to a couple of inconvenient items of personal history, apparently "missed" in a vetting blunder involving Anthony Testaverde, George Smith became  thoroughly discredited as a candidate for any public office; and he lost the GOP primary for 39th Counc. Dist. to an  independent Republican candidate largely supported by a coalition of “Brownstone Republicans” and others desperate to block Smith. The problems with the 2009 Smith campaign didn’t end with Smith’s primary loss in September 2009 by mid-2010 “Friends of George Smith” had been audited by the New York City Campaign Finance Board, which found three categories of violations of its rules that resulted in a total of $1,425.00 in “Invalid Matchable Claims.”

Of course there’s some more that I want to cover. However, I had some serious questions to ask Mr. Testaverde, but so far he hasn’t returned my call  —  I’ll give him a little more time.

Stay tuned.