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View Diary: Sweeney reelect below 50% in NY-20 (32 comments)

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  •  The last democratic congressman (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    devtob, Team Slacker

    in this district was the late Ned Pattison (1974-1978), a personal hero of mine for reasons I won't go in to.  He was elected after the Nixon fiasco when voters were desperate for a change.  Then came republican Gerald Solomon (1978-1998),

    a two-fisted, crewcut U.S. Marine.  ... At one point in the 1990s, he said that UN Secretary General Kofi Annan should be "horsewhipped." For years, the New Yorker fought tirelessly for legislation to criminalize burning of the American flag, and often brandished a fire extinguisher, vowing to personally save Old Glory from flag-burners.

     John Sweeney is in a solidly conservative district and it will take a small miracle for Kirsten Gillibrand to take his seat, but I wish her the best of luck.

    •  This district has only elected one Democrat... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      devtob, Team Slacker, Uncle Bug

      since the Civil War. That's Ned Pattison, the late father of the former Troy mayor, whom you mentioned above. As you said, Pattison held the seat from 1974 through 1978, when he was defeated by the right-wing Gerald Solomon. I've heard Pattison was elected in 1974 mainly due to two reasons - the first being the Watergate scandal (of course), and the second being that the Republican incumbent Carleton King, was in very, very poor health - in fact, King was so sick that he missed one of the debates. Pattison ended up lucky again in 1976 when he etched out a narrow victory due to a Conservative Party spoiler siphoning enough votes away from the Republican candidate. However, when in 1978 there was no Conservative spoiler on the ballot, as well as no GOP scandals, this seat easily went back to the Republicans. Solomon won by about a 10% margin.

      Unfortunately, this year the GOP scandals are not as bad as the ones during the 1970s, and there is no Conservative spoiler. Sweeney also appears to healthy once again.

      Honestly, I'd love to see this area change. I'm so sick of seeing just about every office in the area under the control of regressive Republicans who want to do nothing but serve the needs of big business at the expense of the people. What is it going to take for the people around here to finally figure this out?! Do we need to scream to them that the Republican Party wants to gut their social security? Do we need to scream to them that GOP policies will eventually destroy the Adirondack and Catskill lakes? Or that the Republicans oppose drug the reimportation of American made drugs from Canada at lower prices? What's it going to take to change these people! I really don't think this area would be so Republican if people actually knew what the modern-day GOP stood for. It's up to activists like us to start to make the people in the reddest of red communities aware of the eventual consequences a continuing Republican majority could lead to.

      I wish the people in many of these rural towns would wake up, see the GOP for what it really is, and start voting in favor of their own best interests for a change.

      We need to find some way of making the Republican Party cancer in this area.

    •  voters are desperate for change now (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Team Slacker

      and the district is getting less Republican, but it'll be a hard fight.

      •  Yes, fortunately... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Team Slacker, Uncle Bug

        this district is getting less Republican. Since 2002, the 20th has gained district has gained 9,443 new Democratic registrants in comparison to only 763 new Republican registrants. In Columbia and Dutchess Counties at the southern portion of the district enrolled Democrats and Republicans are now nearly at parity. If the current trends continue, registered Democrats will outnumber registered Republicans in those two counties within five years.

        So fortunately things are changing (at least in the southern portion of the district) due to a continued influx on left-leaning urban migrants from New York City. As you move further up the valley into Saratoga, Warren, and Washington the demographics are still pretty solidly Republican because they haven't seen nearly as many left-leaning transplants. I am hoping the new Luther Forest Tech Park in Saratoga County will help to tip the numbers up in the North; usually people in the tech sector tend to be liberal - look at Silicon Valley. Many have said that our area is slated to become the "Silicon Valley of the East" due to this new tech park.

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