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When New York enacted a marriage equality law last year, Roy McDonald, who represents most of Saratoga, Rensselaer and Columbia counties, was one of four Republican state senators who made it happen.

McDonald explained his vote to reporters in salty, direct language rare for any politician:

You get to the point where you evolve in your life where everything isn't black and white, good and bad, and you try to do the right thing.

You might not like that. You might be very cynical about that. Well, fuck it, I don't care what you think. I'm trying to do the right thing.

I'm tired of Republican-Democrat politics. They can take the job and shove it. I come from a blue-collar background. I'm trying to do the right thing, and that's where I'm going with this.

Especially after that, McDonald knew he would lose the Conservative Party endorsement he's had forever, and face a Religious Right/tea party primary challenger for the GOP line supported by NOM, which is raising money to "flush these slippery traitors out of the tall grass and send them packing."

McDonald has been running a strong campaign -- lots of mail and a TV ad (none mentioning his marriage equality vote) -- and earlier tonight he rang the doorbell at my late parents' house where my brother, a registered Republican lives.

More, below.

My brother had signed a petition to get McDonald on the GOP ballot. McDonald and his walking companion thanked my brother for that, and reminded him to be sure to vote in the Sept. 13 primary.

We chatted a bit, I said I couldn't vote for McDonald in the primary, but would consider him in November. My brother said he would definitely vote for McDonald.

What most impressed me was that McDonald was hitting doors an hour from his home.
Most incumbents don't work that hard.

Presumably he understands that he has to, given that the GOP tea party base will be voting against him and he needs the votes of more moderate Republicans like my brother.

No matter the GOP primary result, both McDonald and his challenger will be on the November ballot on third-party lines. Neither will give up if they lose the primary, and the three-way race will provide a good chance for the excellent Democratic candidate, Claverack Supervisor Robin Andrews, to score an upset that would help swing the state Senate away from its current narrow Republican control.

While I appreciate McDonald's courage on marriage equality, he is still essentially a conservative Republican.

And, these days, I only vote for Democrats.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (11+ / 0-)

    A public option for health insurance is a national priority.

    by devtob on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 05:17:53 PM PDT

  •  I agree. (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    devtob, craigkg, ExStr8, RonV, sfbob

    It takes courage to do what's right regardless of political repercussions, but the Democrat will, overall, be better.

  •  Meanwhile, a few miles upstate... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    devtob, eeff

    We have the choice of Betty Little and Betty Little. Some election cycles are like that around here.

    BTW, I took Congressman Bill Owens on a tour of our business district on Monday. It went well, and I introduced him to some of the movers and shakers. A few of them are republicans. Even though he casts a few votes that I don't like now and then, he  is far and away better that John
    Sweeney wannabe Matt Doheny.  

    And then today, I got a hand written thank you note from him.  Not bad for an old DFH.

    "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 Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 06:27:25 PM PDT

    •  Betty Little is unbeatable, alas (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RonV, eeff

      And Owens is in a nail-biter.

      Thanks for helping him out.

      A public option for health insurance is a national priority.

      by devtob on Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 06:46:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I have a feeling that... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        devtob, eeff

        this is her last hurrah.

        We also have the Stec/Tarantino race for assembly. I'm hoping for a strong Obama coat-tail effect up here.

        "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 Thu Aug 30, 2012 at 06:54:36 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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