"A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have"
Thomas Jefferson

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Who Lost NY-23?

This is a good article that was forwarded and you all would probably enjoy another perspective. Reprinted in its entirety.  


Who Lost NY-23?
Posted By Jonathan Tobin On November 4, 2009 (6:17 AM)

The defeat of Conservative-party candidate Douglas Hoffman in the special election for New York’s 23rd congressional district was the only bright spot for the Democrats on a night when the governor’s races in both New Jersey and Virginia (states that Barack Obama won last year) were swept by the Republicans. So we can expect the Dems to tout their capture of a seat that had been in the hands of the Republicans for over a century as a rejoinder to those who will say this election is a harbinger of a GOP revival in 2010.

The main talking Democratic point about this race, both before and after the voting, was that the collapse of the campaign of the liberal Republican who had been tapped by the state party to try and hold the seat was due to the intolerance of a radical-Right fringe bent on purging the party of any but the most rabid conservatives. In this way Dede Scozzafava, the Republican candidate who dropped out of the race over the weekend and then endorsed Democrat Bill Owens, was elevated from an inept candidate whose positions were largely indistinguishable from that of the Democrats and who was heading for inevitable defeat, to a martyr for the lost cause of liberal Republicanism. The narrative portrays the Republican grassroots, aided and abetted by national conservative personalities such as Sarah Palin and Dick Armey, as bullies who can’t abide the presence of a pro-choice woman in their ranks and would rather lose an election with a conservative than win with a “moderate."

The loss of this seat ought to cast a shadow on what was otherwise a big night for Republicans. But the villains here aren’t the tea-party rabble-rousers who sunk Scozzafava, but a local and state Republican leadership that imposed an incompetent candidate on a Republican electorate eager for leaders who could offer an alternative to the Democrats, not someone who would be a halfhearted supporter of Obama’s agenda. The victory of Chris Christie in New Jersey illustrates that there is room in the GOP for Blue State candidates who wouldn’t pass the muster of the conservative rank and file in more conservative states. But the decision to foist Scozzafava on Upstate New York Republicans was a cynical ploy that was always destined to fail even if a credible Conservative-party alternative hadn’t emerged. It is one thing to seek to open up parties to candidates who are not ideological purists. It is quite another to nominate a person whose positions put her on the side of the Democrats on virtually every major issue that Republicans care about. Scozzafava’s candidacy may have seemed like a good idea to GOP big shots, but since she refused to take up any issues that might have rallied the Republican faithful to her side and lacked the ability to appeal to the dissatisfied independent voters that deserted the Democrats elsewhere this fall, what possible chance did she ever have of winning?

The lesson here is not the danger that the right poses to the future of the Republicans but rather that a party leadership that is insensible to the interests of its voters is doomed to defeat. Had the Republicans chosen a candidate who could have counted on the support of the party’s base to start with, the seat could have been held despite the changing demographics in the district. It was Scozzafava’s dismal campaign that lost the seat, not the fact that it was impossible to convince most Republicans that they had no reason to support her.

17 comments:

Dan Francis said...

Extract from the article makes my point precisely the way I tried to make that point...

"The lesson here is not the danger that the right poses to the future of the Republicans but rather that a party leadership that is insensible to the interests of its voters is doomed to defeat.

"Had the Republicans chosen a candidate who could have counted on the support of the party’s base to start with, ...

the seat could have been held despite the changing demographics in the district."

Kowtow to the base (the Conservatives is the article's point) and mine, too... the small, vocal and many times well-funded rightwing side insists that everyone be "their way."

That is the wrong way... and it showed last night, and Dede knows that better than any one else.

* Believe it or Not...

Dan Francis said...

Worth reposting in part:

"Had the Republicans chosen a candidate who could have counted on the support of the party’s base to start with, the seat could have been held despite the changing demographics in the district."

Ding, wrong in my view.

The results last night prove that point.

HOFFMAN was "ultra-Conservative" Dede was loyal Republican but not "ultra Conservative on two key issues..."

Those two issues basically got her - and spawned Hoffman.

--- in the end, they both lost ---

Got it now?

Anonymous said...

Not quite, Dan. As usual you are somewhat less than illuminating... the author is dead-on.

Anonymous said...

Hind sight is 20/20. Dede is popular. Her pouting about not being picked caused Barclay to lose. Her sour grapes over the slight continued and she failed to lift a finger to support David Renzi. If the Republican's overlooked her again she would have caused more of the same havoc.
There would have been back room sniping which would have hurt any nominees chance of winning. Those who still voted for Dede would have probably voted for Owens hurting any other nominee's chances.


She is (was) popular enough to cause problems. She was popular enough to make people think she could win. So the Republicans picked her. Not because she stood for what most of those in the Republican party believed but because they thought she could win. republicans and democrats know it is not about a candidate who is best on the issues but it is who comes across the best.

To second guess the nominators is not fair. They thought Dede would campaign differently, they thought it would be a two person race - (the same assumption made by the Democrats) Does anyone think Dede loses to Owens with Hoffman out of the picture?


Dede and the Republican's downplayed the importance of the Conservatives. That was their fatal mistake. They should have went and stressed similarities. Dede should have made abortion and gay marraige a non issue by telling Chairman Long that those issues are state's rights issues. As such Rep. Dede would have insured the individual states would decide. This is right up the conservative alley and would point out that it is a non issue that she is pro on those issues. Instead Dede gave the Conservative party the bird.

Let's not make this race into more than it was.

JJ

Anonymous said...

JJ, you're right, to an extent. This race is really about the NYS Conservative Party's failure to actually field a viable candidate and the GOP's seemingly constant inability to run a successful campaign in a statewide or Congressional race. Barclay, Tedisco and Scozzafava all failed because they did not define themselves early on and seemed to wait for the Dems to define them.

The Conservative Party has become a clueless anachronism headed by an out-of-touch, rich fatcat named Mike Long. Incompentent county chairs round out the party's ineptitude. They don't know what they stand for but they can recite a laundry list of what they are opposed to. Talk about the Party of No!! These old farts are truly clueless.

Young conservtives join the Republican Party because they don't know where else to go and the GOP always has lots of free booze.

If the Republicans are to re-brand themselves and emerge as a viable force in NYS, they need to kick Long and the Conservtive Party to the curb and tell them to go polish their 1957 Plymouth Belvedere.

Conservatives can no longer be successful here because they have and identity crisis and real- party envy created by the so-called Independence Party. Now there's the definition of clueless!!

Anonymous said...

The conservative party fielded a candidate who received 45% of the vote. I agree with you that the democrats are much better at defining the other party then we are of defining them. Most often the dems use negative labels to accomplish there defining. The liberal media elite foster it along.

Anonymous said...

5:49 PM
Are you stupid? Did'nt the conservatives lose by 5%? How can you say they are not a viable force in NYS. You forget they only had 3 weeks to get this together.Yet still raised money 10 to 1 from donations. Factor in most people here are either public employed or school employed or related to them. I would say the conserv did surprisingly well. The union effect was overlooked in this race.It likely won't be next year.

Anonymous said...

Dan, I read your first two posts and as usual they make no sense whatsoever. Paragraph one of post one is complete bs. Please reread and rewrite, or at least try to explain.

As most knee jerk jerks you try to do the same thing again and again, which may be a credit to your tenacity, if not your intelligence. This race wasn't about ultra right ideas or right wing this or that or any of the other of your oft repeated pablum. It was about money. The people of this area are broke. They are also tired. Yes, many have the government jobs and pensions like you and I, and this time, those people won out. But soon enough, there won't be enough of us silver spoon folk to vote in a spender. Dede was, and is, a spender. She was, and is, in Albany. The most dysfuncional place in history, with the possible exception of that California capital. Albany is a hub of criminals who think nothing of stealing money from taxpayers to buy off others. And Dede got along just fine. Voters were looking for someone different to send to DC. It's as simple as that. Not nearly as complicated as your right wing, ultra this and that bs that is stuck in your mouth all the time, Dannie. This wasn't about gay marriage, abortion, tweedle dee or tweedle dumb. It was about taxes and spending. And a no name, no talking, non slick, non lawyer almost beat a pickled and canned Pelosi blow up doll.

In a way, I'm kind of happy it went down as it did, as I don't think the people here in NY23 deserve any kind of cut in spending or taxation. Whether they would have gotten it is debatable. But they sure won't get it now.

Just think, if you wouldn't have been so fixated on Fox News Fox News, you could have been in position to run for this office. For one reason alone, I would have loved that. Can you imagine the look on Naaaancie Pelosi's stretched out face if YOU walked in to the House of Representatives?

But you always say facts matter. If so, don't lie Dannie. This was about money. Not gay guys n gals who wanna get hitched. Now stretch face might believe that, or at least SAY that, but no one here in the 23rd voted with that in mind.

Dan Francis said...

6:56 ... not my original post... I simply was examining the post provided by IVY...and offering my view of the article.

Take it our leave it - I don't care.

Anonymous said...

"In this way Dede Scozzafava, the Republican candidate who dropped out of the race over the weekend and then endorsed Democrat Bill Owens, was elevated from an inept candidate whose positions were largely indistinguishable from that of the Democrats... This is crap IV and you know it. Go back in your archives from two weeks ago when you you went over point by point how the claims she was too liberal were false. Which is it, the IV of today or the IV of two weeks ago, because they are 180 degrees apart. I know this is CYA time for some in Republican circles, but this is just absurd.

Anonymous said...

6:44 you have the corner on stupidity. Hoffman spent THREE MILLION DOLLARS on this race and still lost! Some Conservative he is!! And none of it was his money or the Conservative Party's. It all came from wealthy special interest groups like the "Club for Growth." What the hell are they all about, helping bald men grow hair?

Hoffman was inept, inarticulate, had no grasp whatsoever of the issues (remember his respone that the St. Lawrence Seaway "is a local issue"? For God's sake man, get your CPA head out of your arse!!

5:49 is right, the Conservative Party is a joke and Long and the County chairs must go. Stay away from the 2010 election and nobody gets hurt. Come in with your squirt-guns blazing next year and we'll cut them off and stick them in your ears!!

Anonymous said...

Didn't you have some say in who the candidate would be IV? Are you saying you are in part blaming yourself for this loss?

Anonymous said...

Oh you care Dannie, about what I have no idea.

Dan Francis said...

* Two high-ranking GOP views on the 23rd outcome, and their advice for the GOP's future ...

I'm sure you'll love this (at least try to with a straight face).

From Sarah Palin and Sen. Lindsey Graham

Anonymous said...

The reason the Republican's lost a seat they held for over a century is because, they are republican. The in house fighting in the counties has caused them to lose two special elections.

Dan Francis is right. They are so out of touch with us, it is like they are on Mars.

Dede is to good for the republicans always has been.

I hope she see's the light and leaves the party.

Keep it up IV you are are best competition. Through sliva balls at Dede at this point serves no purpose. It will just irritate the loyal republican's that have a brain.

Anonymous said...

Betcha 8:47 has a government job, or a government pension, and just doesn't mind continued taxing and spending. Betcha. Just like Dannie. Insulated from reality.

What is it, two million NYers moved in that past few years. Half had government pensions and are taking their/your money and running. The others had kids and had to. And you think this is about gay marriage?

Anonymous said...

Actually except for Virginia Governor, Lt Gov and Attorney Gen., and a photo finish Governor election in New Jersey, the Republicans got pummeled across the nation in special elections. The Republicans are not back the vast media needs a counter point.

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