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The Albany Times Union endorsed Kirsten Gillibrand today for Congress in NY-20.  This is great news for Kirsten.  In the past, the paper endorsed John "Kick Ass" Sweeney.  After his recent problems - maybe his nom de plume should be John "Getting His Ass Kicked" Sweeney.  

The editorial:
Gillibrand for Congress

The Democratic challenger has emerged as a better candidate than the Republican incumbent.
It's time for a change in the 20th Congressional District in New York and across much of the country. The elections of 2006, potentially historic in their scope, ought to be when the Democrats regain control of Congress. Rarely has such an overall change been needed more, especially to restore the checks and balances that the Constitution provides.
In each of his last two re-election campaigns, we endorsed U.S. Rep. John Sweeney. We cannot do so this time. Instead, our endorsement goes to his challenger, Kirsten Gillibrand.
Yet Ms. Gillibrand has emerged as unquestionably qualified for Congress by virtue of her vision and intelligence. She would be an articulate advocate for the people who would become her constituents. She's especially passionate about saving the small farms in the Hudson Valley, and she sees the dredging of the Hudson River as the economic opportunity that it truly is.
This election is about more than who's best for the interests of the 20th Congressional District. It's about who's best for the interests of the country. Ms. Gillibrand is clearly the better choice.

The editorial doesn't reference Sweeney's recent ethical problems.  The Times Union, as well as other papers and local TV have been hammering Sweeney for his failure to release the domestic incident report that he said he would release on Wednesday.  On Friday, he lawyered up, said his lawyer advised him not to release anything, and directed the lawyer to "investigate" the leak of the domestic incident to see who was behind it.  Does this remind you of OJ?  
The Glens Falls Post Star rescinded their endorsement when Sweeney stonewalled.

Also in the paper today, columnist Fred Lebrun chastizes Sweeney for this ethical lapse

He should have known that a domestic incident call to police initiated by a congressman's wife would come back to haunt him if he didn't confront it head-on. Last December was the time to deflate the impact. Like Hevesi has done recently, Sweeney could have pleaded human failings. He and his wife, Gayle, were under extreme stress at the time because of concerns about John's health and his son's legal problems. John Sweeney is not an unsympathetic character. People would have responded charitably, I'm sure, and that would have been the end of that.

Instead, over the months as this newspaper and others tried to get the details of the incident, we were stonewalled, by him and by the cops. There were denials from higher-ups in the State Police that any official reports or documents even existed from the night in question. That proved to be quite untrue.

Sweeney got a second chance to defuse the situation when three newspapers published information last week that gave the bare bones of the incident, obtained from what we are confident are official reports. He flunked a second time. More bluster, more denials instead.

So, should any of this become a significant factor in his bid for a fifth term in office? No and yes. Sweeney called the original domestic incident "a nonissue" in terms of his re-election. He's right. But his mangled attempts at suppressing it, his bullying, posturing and denying during the cover-up are not. They go right to character, and that's fair game.

So, should any of this become a significant factor in his bid for a fifth term in office? No and yes. Sweeney called the original domestic incident "a nonissue" in terms of his re-election. He's right. But his mangled attempts at suppressing it, his bullying, posturing and denying during the cover-up are not. They go right to character, and that's fair game.

It all comes down to GOTV!  If you are around Troy - stop into Dem HQ and help.  Jim Dean (Howard's Bro and head of Democracy For America is supposed to stop by today at 1pm.

The Canon Building
5 Broadway, 2nd Floor,
Troy NY 12180

Originally posted to Tillie630 on Sun Nov 05, 2006 at 07:34 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  The clock is ticking (6+ / 0-)

    Final three day push to elect Kirsten and kick Sweeney's ass out.  Off to GOTV!

  •  I feel very good about this race (4+ / 0-)

    but we can't take anything for granted.  Now is the time to push harder than ever.

    Don Sherwood, if you campaign on family values, it helps if you have some.

    by TeresaInPa on Sun Nov 05, 2006 at 07:38:32 AM PST

    •  I am feeling much better about this race too... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LuLu, xtcian, Christopher Walker

      I have been working on this race since November 2004.

      I started writing about my ongoing battle with Sweeney to get him to take a position on Social Security, with Josh marshall was kind enough to pick up in his online column, Talking Points Memo.

      Theresa, I know that you and I disagree strongly about some things.  But one of the things I love about being a Democrat is that we can go to the mat on some things, disagree about others, and do it while having dinner together, knowing we are united in our determination to oust Republicans.

      Are you in my district here?  If so, that would be too funny.

      And also if so, are you phone banking?  I am planning on trying to phone bank.   I wrenched my back last week, so I am out of commission for canvassing, but I am hoping to be able to sit in a chair long enough to phone bank on Monday.

      •  I am in district 10 (0+ / 0-)

        in Pa.  I feel like a pennsylvanian. But I grew up in Owego, Rotterdamn and Salem NY.  We had lake property in Madison county until a few years ago.  So I kind of feel like all of NYS is my home, though in particular the Albany/Schenectady/Saratoga area.

        Don Sherwood, if you campaign on family values, it helps if you have some.

        by TeresaInPa on Sun Nov 05, 2006 at 08:32:50 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I feel that way about Vermont... (0+ / 0-)

          I grew up most of my life in Vermont, so for me, it will always be home to one extent or another, although at this point, I definetly feel like a New Yorker (also, I was born here).

          I would love to phone bank more, but I wrneched my back and am having trouble sitting down, let alone sitting for four hours.  I have been trying to get calling lists so I can do it from my house and use a headset, but no luck so far.

          The good news is, that I have been getting more friends who have never phone banked before, to go and do it for me, since I can't.  This may well be a blessing in disguise.

      •  ps (0+ / 0-)

        do the phone banking.  You won't regret it.

        Don Sherwood, if you campaign on family values, it helps if you have some.

        by TeresaInPa on Sun Nov 05, 2006 at 08:33:37 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  GREAT NEWS! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Casey Morris

    Thanks for the update!  So many of us have adopted Kirsten and other Dem candidates in NY.

    Good Luck and thanks for your work.

  •  I read that this morning... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Christopher Walker, Casey Morris

    I've been expecting it. Especially since $weeney's people have been treating the Times Union writers like sh*t for daring to ask questions.

    I'm on my way right now to pick up a phone list and script . I'll be spending the afternoon calling my neighbors with the "Get out and vote" message.

    She's going to win.

    BTW, my 77 year old mother-in-law walked over to the Glens Falls Dem. headquarters yesterday morning and got to finally meet Kirsten. She was very favorably impressed.

    "I was so easy to defeat, I was so easy to control, I didn't even know there was a war." -9.75, -8.41

    by RonV on Sun Nov 05, 2006 at 07:55:52 AM PST

  •  The Saratogian endorses Sweeney...sort of (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Today's Saratogian offers an edorsement of John Sweeney, largely on the grounds of brining home lots of pork.  However, the editorial also includes the following:

    That said, Sweeney's refusal to debate Gillibrand on the grounds that she wouldn't release her tax returns was, in a word, lame.

    Also, Sweeney skates on thin ice in defending his annual congressional staff junkets to Lake Placid at state taxpayers' expense.

    And while we think an elected official's domestic troubles are his private business, we find it unsettling that Sweeney would first discount a 911 domestic dispute call to his home, then promise to make the police report public, and then refuse to make it public.....his actual response raises questions about whether Sweeney is true to his word.

    Sweeney's contention that he was forced to take potshots at Gillibrand because she was taking potshots at him is like a kid crying, 'She started it!'

    But, as long as the goodies flow in, I guess it's okay.

  •  I think the Glens Falls paper (0+ / 0-)

    rescinded their endorsement for Sweeney after he failed to produce the documents that would prove that the 9-1-1 call wasn't for domestic violence.

    The religious fanatics didn't buy the republican party because it was virtuous, they bought it because it was for sale

    by nupstateny on Sun Nov 05, 2006 at 08:57:18 AM PST

    •  "Endorsement withdrawn" editorial (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      How many times has a newspaper ever withdrawn a previous endorsement of a candidate?  Well, that's exactly what happened today in the Glens Falls Post-Star.  Herewith, for your reading enjoyment, a few excerpts:

      EDITORIAL: Endorsement withdrawn: Character questions continue to dog Sweeney

      Post-Star withdraws endorsement in wake of latest controversy regarding domestic violence call

      There's a time when you have to say, enough. Here is one such time.

      Serious allegations of domestic violence were raised against Congressman John Sweeney earlier this week after three newspapers published police accounts of a 911 call to his home in December.

      The congressman has said he wants the truth to come out. But his actions in the wake of the incident and the disclosure of the 911 call in the media indicate otherwise....

      On Friday, as the citizens waited a third day for Sweeney to finally disclose the truth, again there was nothing from the congressman to support his claims as to what really happened. Instead, the congressman had himself seen with Governor Pataki and 9/11 hero Rudy Giuliani, telling reporters who questioned him about the waiver as he walked away, "Talk to my lawyer."

      Perhaps by appearing with these two political giants, Sweeney was hoping their aura would overshadow a newspaper report published Friday in which he was quoted in the Times-Union as saying he thought the whole domestic violence matter was a "non-issue."

      "It is a non-issue, and only you people made it an issue because it's salacious," the congressman told Times-Union editors.

      We don't think it's a non-issue. And we're sure many of our readers don't either....

      In our editorial endorsing the congressman for re-election last Sunday, we pointed out the many flaws in Congressman Sweeney's character, including his accompanying lobbyists to exotic locations, fabricating lies about his political opponents, and using poor judgement in attending frat parties. We said voters should take those factors into consideration, but that the congressman's record in helping secure funding for his district and voting in Republican interests overrode concerns about his unofficial conduct.

      His response to this incident reflects disturbingly not only on his character, but on his credibility to serve effectively as a representative of all the people.

      There are still three days left until Election Day, and we urge the congressman to release the police documentation he says will unveil the truth about what really happened at his house that night.

      Given this situation and Congressman Sweeney's unacceptable response to it, we can no longer stand behind our earlier endorsement of his candidacy.

      With a complete blowout developing in NY, RI, PA, and Ohio, can we begin to call the area between the Canadian border and the Rappahanock River in VA the "Solid North"?  That's what we may awake to on Wednesday.

  •  WOOHOO!!!!!! GO KIRSTEN!!! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LuLu, xtcian

    We had a blast of a day door-to-door canvassing in Dutchess County.  Some Sweeney goons were across the street from Gillibrand's Rhinebeck headquarters waving signs at the windows and generally acting like cro-mags.

    All the while dozens of GOTV canvassing volunteers were crowding in and out of the narrow stairway to the Gillibrand campaign office either leaving to (or just coming back from) speaking with actual voters about Kirsten.  

    Even a yoga class in the same building ended up joining the phone bank when their class ended!

    Guess who'se going to take the 20th district seat on Tuesday!!!!  Don't let up.  KEEP WORKING!

  •  Times Union (0+ / 0-)

    I take back some of the bad things I've said about the Times Union.  ;-)

  •  We had a great time this morning in Catskill (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    a nice rally with Kirsten, 200 or so of her closest friend and the General himself, Wes Clark.

    Kirsten has really gotten the star-power coming out for her the last few weeks.

    She is going to win!

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