Cross-posted from The 10,000 Things
How bad is the state of the New York Republican Party? Fairly close to complete disarray.
A conservative State party Chairman, Steve Minarik, is looking to a moderate former governor of another state, Bill Weld (who conservatives hate), to try and replace outgoing moderate Governor George Pataki who dreams of running for President. Others in the state are looking to billionaire novelty candidate Tom Golisano (who Pataki hates) to be the standard bearer of the state party. And now reports are coming out that State Senate Majority leader Joe Bruno is looking to another billionaire, Donald Trump, to save the day. This would be the same Donald Trump that gives heavily to Democratic candidates and lightly to Republicans. At the state level (including leading Democratic candidate for Governor Eliot Spitzer) as well as federal.
While all this crazy courtship is going on the state Republican party appears to be completely ignoring the highest ranking African American in their party, ex-Secretary of State Randy Daniels and one of the few apparently competent and once highly thought of members, former State Assembly Minority Leader John Faso. All of this may just open up the door to Conservative Party darling, State Assemblyman Patrick Manning. There has been speculation that all this may end up dropping the Republican Party to third party status in New York.
But that’s just the Governors race, right? Aaah… but wait… there’s more!
This is the same Republican Party that failed to run a serious candidate against Sen. Chuck Schumer in 2004 (Schumer won a record 72% of the vote against… who?). The same party that recently forced Westchester County D.A. Jeanine Pirro to drop out of her disastrous bid (apparently destroyed her website too) to oppose Sen. Hillary Clinton and run for State Attorney General instead. Now severely damaged goods we’ll see how well that works out (and that leaves who exactly to run for Senate this time around?).
Aaah… but it doesn’t stop there. The primary reason “Uncle” Joe Bruno pushed Pirro over the cliff was to get her into the Attorney General race. Why? Because “poor Joe” is hanging by a thread in his role as number 2 Republican in the state. Only 5 state senate seats keep him in his role as one of “three men in a room” ruling New York state government. Republican State Senator Michael Balboni who is, according to what a highly placed democratic colleague of his told me, very capable and someone that democrats can work with to get things done for the state despite policy differences, was considered the leading Republican candidate to run for State Attorney General. Balboni’s Senate district is a very Democratic friendly district. Usually when you want a politician to do something you give him something. Bruno took something away, something very precious to politicians… opportunity. We’ll see how that works out. There are other Senate Republicans that would love to retire Joe Bruno. Lord knows, I would too. Will the very capable Mr. Balboni, like the capable Mr. Faso, be looking to new leadership of the state party in the near future? hmmmm….
Surely their troubles must end here you say? Sadly no, their tale of woe continues over at The 10,000 Things!