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Diane Ravitch speaking at a National Education Association event.
Diane Ravitch, actually compelling, unlike the "leading candidate."
Thanks to New York's "fusion" ballot system, in which candidates can run on various party lines, the GOP is in serious danger of losing major party status. To summarize: The top two vote getting parties don't just get top billing on state ballots for the next four years, but they also control county election boards and perhaps other such boards and commissions.

Public polling shows huge discontent with Gov. Andrew Cuomo among Democrats, with about half of them defecting to a Working Families Party candidate. That still puts Cuomo comfortably in the lead, but creates a dogfight between the GOP and WFP for second place.

It's actually worse for the GOP, as their candidate is also on the Conservative Party ballot line, giving Tea Party-types a non-GOP option to vote for their nominee. And since we're talking Republicans, they are also stupid, creating yet another ballot line for their guy Rob Astorino. The more non-GOP lines conservatives have to vote for Astorino, the fewer votes the Republican Party ballot line will have. Crazy huh?

But not as crazy as the WFP, which appears dead set on squandering this opportunity to achieve major party status by ... well, read this:

Fordham law professor zephyr teachout said to be a leadin candidate to head WFP ticket if @NYGovCuomo doesn't get nomination: sources
@klnynews
And this:
Eager to show they are serious about fielding a rival to Mr. Cuomo, the party’s leaders have in recent weeks been suggesting numerous candidates, including Diane Ravitch, the education historian, who has become an outspoken critic of charter schools and standardized testing.

On Wednesday, a new possibility surfaced: Zephyr Teachout, a Fordham law professor and author who has written on combating political corruption and the influence of money in politics.

Ravitch seems like a compelling option (stuff like this is encouraging). Teachout, on the other hand, feels like a bad joke.

If the name sounds familiar to you, it's because she was Howard Dean's internet director back in the day. Now, she's a law professor at Fordham. In between, she accused me of being bought off by the Dean campaign and not disclosing it, both charges being patently false. Still, her accusations allowed every right-wing asshole to pile on for weeks and gave the media a "both sides do it!" narrative in the wake of the Armstrong Williams scandal.  

So yes, I'm bitter. I think I have a right to be. (And factor that into what I'm saying next.) But the bigger problem is that a Teachout nomination would surrender this historic opportunity to relegate the GOP to minority party status, and I want that BAD. So bad in fact, that given the circumstances, I was seriously considering a first-time strategic defection from the Democratic Party. Instead of giving people an inspiring accomplished personality to rally around, the "leading candidate" is someone with zero name ID, no candidate experience, and utterly lacking the heft and accomplishments necessary to spark a movement.

A Teachout nomination (choice is being made this weekend) would say "we're not seriously contesting this," and that would be great news for Andrew Cuomo AND the New York GOP.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Holy Moley! (13+ / 0-)

    Zephyr Teachout is a real name. Instead of a contrived comedy or kiddie lit name.

    "If this Studebaker had anymore Atomic Space-Age Style, you'd have to be an astronaut with a geiger counter!"

    by Stude Dude on Thu May 29, 2014 at 06:33:35 AM PDT

  •  For Criticizing Zephyr Teachout (14+ / 0-)

    You should be forced to attend a bloggers' ethics workshop.

    This aggression will not stand, man.

    by kaleidescope on Thu May 29, 2014 at 06:34:18 AM PDT

  •  I remember now (0+ / 0-)

    I had just gotten here and was confused by the whole ordeal.

    Libertarianism is something that most people grow out of, not unlike, say, hay fever or asthma. Bob Johnson

    by randallt on Thu May 29, 2014 at 06:38:01 AM PDT

  •  I know this sounds hopelessly like CT, but (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    llywrch

    might it be deliberate?  WFP doesn't want to marginalize the GOP because there are clandestine dealings between the two?

    God, it looks even stupider typed out than in my head... but I'll put it out there for laughs^h^h^hdiscussion.  :P

    Not all people are human; not all humans are people.

    by Jon Sitzman on Thu May 29, 2014 at 06:39:15 AM PDT

  •  I think highly of Ravitch. Her inclusion in the (20+ / 0-)

    race might begin to change some of the cheerleading for charters and privatization.  It would be an excellent public forum in what would become a very high profile race.  I hope she considers it seriously.

    "There are no safe words with me." -- The Perfect Wedding

    by Rikon Snow on Thu May 29, 2014 at 06:42:41 AM PDT

  •  Name a candidate, kos (n/t) (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    raboof, Matt Z, Simplify, blizek

    Hige sceal þe heardra, heorte þe cenre, mod sceal þe mare, þe ure mægen lytlað

    by milkbone on Thu May 29, 2014 at 06:42:44 AM PDT

  •  Zephyr Teachout (9+ / 0-)

    I've honestly never heard of her. Ravitch has far better name recognition and can cogently and clearly express what is wrong with Cuomo from a progressive perspective.

  •  I've heard Diane Ravitch on Democracy Now! (9+ / 0-)

    and we REALLY NEED to hear her voice on school testing and the privatization of education!  She was in Bush's administration so her other views need to be examined, but I was impressed with what she said.  She really seemed like someone who wanted to do well for people, and was wiling to take the data into account and make adjustments, including completely fundamental ones, when that was appropriate.

  •  reality (11+ / 0-)

    It is far too late to draft a quality candidate.  The reality of NY politics is that no one with any political capital will take this on.  Everyone is NY is scared of Andy.  

    And the reality is that the WFP leadership doesn't want to do this so they aren't going to work to find a quality candidate.

    None of this is good for the WFP.  But they were the ones who endorsed Cuomo last time so they are to blame.  

    If the WFP was going to do this right, they should have been preparing a candidate last year.  Instead this is what one of their leaders said in December when confronted with the idea of challenging Cuomo.  

    Bill Lipton, the WFP’s state director, had a brief response to that idea: “It’s absurd.”
    The WFP knows a lot about how to run elections.  It is clear they don't want to run one at the leadership level.  Going to be an interesting weekend in Albany when the leaders have to face the angry members at their convention.
    •  Agree (11+ / 0-)

      this has more to do with internal power struggles within WFP than anything else. There's a grass-roots faction who passionately detest Cuomo, and who I'm sure would want to nominate the strongest possible alternative candidate, there's a union faction who are pretty much OK with Cuomo as long as he gives them what they want, and there's the leadership trying to ride herd on the whole shebang.

      Sorry, it made sense for them to endorse Cuomo last time, because it got them ballot position. And much of the argument about whether or not to endorse Cuomo this time rides on the same consideration: if they endorse any other candidate, no matter who, they are risking their ballot line. Of course the stronger the candidate, the more votes they pull, and the less risk of losing their line.

      FWIW, I held my nose and voted for Cuomo last time, since the alternative was Mr. Baseball Bat. After four years of him, I'm ready to vote for someone else, even Zephyr Teachout (sorry, Markos). It would be my first vote for a non-Democrat since 1969. If WFP nominates Cuomo, which is still a very real possibility, I plan to undervote for Governor come November. And I know a lot of other good Democrats who feel the same: my local Democratic Club, on whose executive committee I serve, is not endorsing him, nor are some of the other reform clubs in my area.

      "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

      by sidnora on Thu May 29, 2014 at 07:06:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  didn't vote for him last time (7+ / 0-)

        Won't this time.

        He was taking money from the Koch Brother's last time.  That's all I needed to know.

         This time he is being supported by a big money group called "Republicans for Cuomo".  

        Why would any Democrat vote for this man?

        I agree that this is a difficult time for the WFP.  But this happens to any group that gains some power.  They quickly lose site of why they existed in the first place.

        •  I'm not setting myself up (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Justin Mikulka

          as any big supporter of WFP. In fact, people who know me IRL know that it's rather the opposite. They managed to disenchant me through direct contact, and very early on. While they have helped some good people get elected, they have also taken stands that were entirely self-serving, and not at all in keeping with their mission statement, some as long as 10 years ago.

          That they may be on the verge of losing sight of that mission entirely doesn't surprise me all that much, but if they do they are dooming themselves to the same fate as the Liberal Party met, only much, much faster.

          I suspect this is something that's driven structurally, by NY's election laws that allow cross-endorsement. It helps third and fourth parties gain power when they are forming, but it also pressures them into making deals with the devil later on.

          "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

          by sidnora on Fri May 30, 2014 at 04:09:13 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Me too, first time ever not voting for a Democrat (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Alice Olson, sidnora

        Or it will be. In the past I've never voted for a non-Democrat, but Cuomo is not getting my vote again. I really hope WFP can give me someone to vote for, otherwise it'll be a write in, with democrats down the rest of the ballot (I think).

  •  Dr. Ravitch just had a knee (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    yoduuuh do or do not, suka

    replacement. I don't think she'll be a candidate.

    It is ridiculous to pretend that firing teachers based on student test scores, starting charter schools, giving out vouchers or implementing merit pay will overcome the challenges facing a child living in poverty. -Jersey Jazzman

    by Desert Rose on Thu May 29, 2014 at 06:45:42 AM PDT

    •  ? (4+ / 0-)

      My mother had two knee replacments, was up and about after 5 weeks and does just fine at 88.  That's like saying Tammy Duckworth lost two legs so she won't be a candidate.

      " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

      by gchaucer2 on Thu May 29, 2014 at 06:54:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  No, it's based on reading her blog every single (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        brein, AlexDrew

        day, and knowing something about her intentions.

        It is ridiculous to pretend that firing teachers based on student test scores, starting charter schools, giving out vouchers or implementing merit pay will overcome the challenges facing a child living in poverty. -Jersey Jazzman

        by Desert Rose on Thu May 29, 2014 at 07:18:02 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Ravitch: I am not a candidate for political office (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Desert Rose

          Per her blog:

          In the past two days, there has been speculation in the media that I might be a candidate for governor on behalf of the Working Families Party.

          I have not sought this designation nor am I running for any political office. There are many well-qualified candidates, and I expect that WFP will choose one of them.

          Regular readers of this blog know that I had major surgery on May 9 to replace a knee that I injured when I fell in April. For the balance of this summer, I look forward to walking, not running!

          I hope that WFP mounts a vigorous campaign, especially on the issue of education, pointing out that the Cuomo administration has tolerated highly inequitable funding, limited the ability of districts to tax themselves to meet their needs, and shown preference for charter schools–which enroll 3% of the state’s children–over public schools. Our children are our future.

          There's no such thing as a free market!

          by Albanius on Thu May 29, 2014 at 11:28:08 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  No disrespect intended to Dr. Ravitch's health, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        AlexDrew

        even though you wrote that in there, and even added a Tammy Duckworth to make me appear biased.

        It is ridiculous to pretend that firing teachers based on student test scores, starting charter schools, giving out vouchers or implementing merit pay will overcome the challenges facing a child living in poverty. -Jersey Jazzman

        by Desert Rose on Thu May 29, 2014 at 07:20:03 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  .. (0+ / 0-)

        It is ridiculous to pretend that firing teachers based on student test scores, starting charter schools, giving out vouchers or implementing merit pay will overcome the challenges facing a child living in poverty. -Jersey Jazzman

        by Desert Rose on Thu May 29, 2014 at 07:03:45 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  She's not running. (0+ / 0-)

        http://dianeravitch.net/...

        In the past two days, there has been speculation in the media that I might be a candidate for governor on behalf of the Working Families Party.

        I have not sought this designation nor am I running for any political office. There are many well-qualified candidates, and I expect that WFP will choose one of them.

        Regular readers of this blog know that I had major surgery on May 9 to replace a knee that I injured when I fell in April. For the balance of this summer, I look forward to walking, not running!

        I hope that WFP mounts a vigorous campaign, especially on the issue of education, pointing out that the Cuomo administration has tolerated highly inequitable funding, limited the ability of districts to tax themselves to meet their needs, and shown preference for charter schools–which enroll 3% of the state’s children–over public schools. Our children are our future.

        It is ridiculous to pretend that firing teachers based on student test scores, starting charter schools, giving out vouchers or implementing merit pay will overcome the challenges facing a child living in poverty. -Jersey Jazzman

        by Desert Rose on Fri May 30, 2014 at 06:35:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Either one don't amount to much. (5+ / 0-)

    As Ive been saying, the problem here is finding a candidate. Whipping up 'primary' without a candidate is putting the cart before the horse.

    And I suspect its going to be WFP thats going to lose major party status in the event, not the GOP.

    Gonna need a much more compelling candidate whose got some appeal outside the Upper West Side and certain sections of Park Slope to get some real votes.

    •  Zephyr Teachout is an attorney (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mannie, Ray Radlein

      Diane Ravitch is not.

      An attorney can be nominated for a judgeship. The only way NY law lets you get off the ballot, in order for someone else to take their place, is to be nominated for another office.

      Debra "But what I have concluded over the years is that talent is universal, but opportunity is not." SOS Clinton

      by debcoop on Thu May 29, 2014 at 04:04:28 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  WFP isn't going to lose their line (0+ / 0-)

      Hell, the fucking useless Greens held their line with first class dipshit Howie Hawkins last time. WFP could run my dog or the Rent is Too Damn High guy's dog and keep their line.

      There's a lot of moving parts here and I support WFP nominating anyone but Cuomo, but worrying about WFP not getting 50K votes this year is silly.

      It's not going to happen.

      "after the Rapture, we get all their shit"

      the albany project.

      by lipris on Fri May 30, 2014 at 08:49:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  What Armstrong Williams scandal? (0+ / 0-)

    I voted Tuesday, May 6, 2014 because it is my right, my responsibility and because my parents moved from Alabama to Ohio to vote. Unfortunately, the republicons want to turn Ohio into Alabama.

    by a2nite on Thu May 29, 2014 at 06:49:17 AM PDT

  •  Just another example why (4+ / 0-)

    various third party alternatives end up being wasted votes.

  •  Kos is invoking the "Silber exception" (7+ / 0-)

    as we call it in Massachusetts:

    the Democratic candidate is so bad that you must vote for the opposition.

    Needless to say, the Silber should only be used with great care and in extreme circumstances. But Andy Cuomo is approaching that level of badness.

    The thing about quotes on the internet is you cannot confirm their validity. ~Abraham Lincoln

    by raboof on Thu May 29, 2014 at 06:51:06 AM PDT

  •  Dean had so many clowns running his campaign. (3+ / 0-)

    Hillary in 2008 had the same problem. I do wonder if a candidate's choice in campaign director is a foreshadow of who they might select as an advisor once elected.

  •  With all due respect (0+ / 0-)

    to all involved, Zephyr Teachout sounds like a name that would lose in the early rounds of Deadspin's "Name of the Year" bracket challenge.  (And yes, I feel bad about myself for knowing about that little gem.)  Which is seriously unfortunate, because New York needs an alternative to Cuomo that isn't Rob Astorino.

    "Education is the key to unlock the golden door of freedom." -- G.W.Carver

    by northbronx on Thu May 29, 2014 at 07:00:39 AM PDT

  •  I like Brian Jones a lot (2+ / 0-)

    alas he is running for Lt. Gov. on the Green Party ticket.

    Meanwhile, the media seems to finally connecting Cuomo to the clusterf%^!k that is the closing of Long Island College Hospital. I think this issue is going to continue to grow as a factor in how people in my area vote.

  •  Dear sweet God, no. (3+ / 0-)

    Not her. Lovely woman, but not against Cuomo. He'll eat her alive and pick his teeth with her bones.

    Fuck me, it's a leprechaun.

    by MBNYC on Thu May 29, 2014 at 07:05:21 AM PDT

  •  I thought supporting a third party (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    v2aggie2, ChuckChuckerson, AlexDrew

    candidacy was contrary to site rules.

  •  WFP guv is cool unless they were once mean to Kos? (5+ / 0-)

    It's heartening to see principle defer to petty personal history.

    (Disclosure: I barely remember ever hearing of Ms. Teachout).

  •  If WFP nominates Teachout or endorses Andy (2+ / 0-)

    it should be re-named the WTF party.

  •  Kos's evolution? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    raboof, Odysseus

    I think it's good to acknowledge that there are times (maybe not often) when it is strategically better to support someone who doesn't have a 'D' beside his/her name.

  •  Man, for some of the best days of my life, (5+ / 0-)

    the Dean campaign sure has a boatload of names I really don't care to hear again.  Teachout, Trippi, McMahon, precious Kate O'Connor giggling from her keyboard while eating cookies.

    Ugh.

    "Just because your voice reaches halfway around the world doesn't mean you are wiser than when it reached only to the end of the bar." ~ Edward R. Murrow

    by CJB on Thu May 29, 2014 at 07:40:21 AM PDT

  •  Andy is trying out the democrat model: social t... (0+ / 0-)

    Andy is trying out the democrat model: social tolerance in an oligarchy. Will it work? (Spoiler alert: no. You still gotta eat.)

  •  Diane Ravitch (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rexxnyc, brein, wu ming, Alice Olson

    is an intellectual heavyweight on the subject of education.  Cuomo is wholly devoted to the charter schools business, and it is a business.  He made that clear when he spoke to Eva Moskowitz's little rally against De Blasio's efforts to deprive her of SOME of what Bloomberg had handed over to her. Ravitch could hold her own on that subject, and is smart enough to develop a couple of other campaign planks and defend them well.

    Zephyr Teachout would be a laughable choice--no experience as a candidate, no name recognition, and a name that will be mocked when it is recognized. Plus association with Dean, who I admire greatly, but a lot of people think is a liberal crazy person.

  •  So what are the ACTION items here?? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Odysseus, DemInSeattle, brein, Alice Olson

    If NY Kossacks want to prevent the WFP from doing something stupid (and I agree that Teachout would be a serious blunder) what can/should they do about it?

  •  I don't think this will work. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    brooklynbadboy

    Third-party candidates rarely (if ever) get more than 5% of the vote. Most of the times, they get less than what the polls show. Sarvis in Virginia last year seems to have been an exception, but he ran in an exceptional race where both candidates were unpopular. Even then, he didn't get into the double digits, let alone anywhere near a level where he could surpass Cuccinelli or McAuliffe.

  •  Can I have what's behind the curtain? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    janosnation, blizek, Odysseus

    Rather than a flake, or someone who was famously wrong before she converted to being right, can I vote for someone who was right in the first place, has positions on a wider range of issues, and has some electoral-politics skills?  

    It's not the side effects of the cocaine/I'm thinking that it must be love

    by Rich in PA on Thu May 29, 2014 at 08:12:50 AM PDT

  •  Cuomo can be beaten and his donations show it (2+ / 0-)

    yesterday Kos posted story story from WNYC (NPR) showing Cuomo got only 1% of his $33 Million from donors of $250 or less.

    So he got 1% x $33 Million = $330,000 from the people.

    That works out to maybe 2,000 or 3,000 donors in all of New York State who aren't "Republicans for Cuomo".  

    ($330,000 /$125 average) = 2600 though we don't know the real number.

    Compare with BO who had millions of small donors.

    And then in 2009 Bloomberg spent $100 Million against Thompson's $5 million and won by only 2%.  And some people actually like Bloomberg.

    (Apologies for re-posting similar comment).

    •  Name a single major election where (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Odysseus

      campaign finance was an issue that won an election.

      A new york governor gets his campaign money from rich folks on wall street. News at 11.

      Cuomo sails. But be on the lookout for scandal!

      •  right (0+ / 0-)

        you mean campaign finance as an issue ?  right

        though it might come with Citizens United

        but on schools, Ravitch would do well in NYC and even beyond.  lots of parents are sick of this crap, the bubble tests, etc.

        Astorino is even making noises about it

        •  Really? You've seen her on the stump? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          brein

          My understanding is that shes never run for anything. Ever. And shes 75. A professor at NYU. For a long, long time.

          I dont see her doing well beyond...well...NYU and similar places.

          And now shes going to be a candidate for Governor? Of New York?

          Yeah....color me not buying it.

          •  three points (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            wu ming

            1. she's been 'campaigning' for the end of the school 'reform' (NCLB, Race to the Top, Common Core) baloney endlessly for at least five years - flying around the country speaking to parents and politicians.

            She can handle a bus ride to Rochester and Buffalo. So if she did this (governor run) it would be a natural extension of her current activity.

            She can work a crowd. In Nashville, or California or Tennessee.  

            2. Sure , her resume is mostly academic.  And she is an historian.  But she was also assistant secretary of education under Bush I, so she has some executive experience.  Unlike, say, BO or Tim Geithner in 2009.

            She could even use her ancient ties to Bush to wrap herself in the 'bipartisan' mantle - if only in the 'bipartisan' attacks on her recent work.

            And through her family she has been around NY politics for a long time,  knows a lot of people, and understands more than just schools.

            3. Who else?

            •  Pretty thin gruel, you'll have to admit. (0+ / 0-)

              No, that's not campaigning at all. A serious gubernatorial campaign is far more sophisticated and challenging a prospect, especially against a powerful, popular incumbent. What she's been doing is going around the country giving speeches, which isn't even close to what its going to take to mount a credible bid.

              I don't think touting ones service in the Bush Administration is the way to turnout WFP voters.

              Being a politician is a skill. It takes a lot of work to get good at it. Some people are naturals, and some have to learn how to do it.

              No, I don't think there is anyone else who is credible. A congressperson, a big mayor, a state elected official. Hell even the GOP got one of the top county executives on their ballot.

              •  he's really not popular (Cuomo); he is known (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Mannie

                at least when popularity is measured by donations from the 99% ( my first comment).  2000 donations from real people is as many as - John Liu had?

                he does have a lot of "GOP for Cuomo" money; and I doubt the WFP has huge ground game - but some. Still money isn't everything...ask John Tower.

                •  Have you seen approvals? (0+ / 0-)

                  He's got the best approval numbers of any governor running for reelection this year...better than Martinez or Sandoval.

                  But here's the thing, I'll say it again: this is the first Democrat running for an unconpetitive reelection since...thats right...Mario Cuomo in 1990. Its been 24 years. After years of absolutely embarrassing disfunction, resignations, scandal, Albany is quiet. That is the reason Cuomo will be reelected by a wide margin.

                  I, for one, don't think there is any reason to worry about him having any success with his national ambitions. Hes not a national candidate,  period. He's not a good campaigner, hes terrible on the eyes and ears, his personal life isnt anything close to presidential, and he couldnt win a national Democratic primary as the unknown Wall Street guy from New York. And that is IF Hillary doesnt run. If she does, he wont even be able to win his own state.

                  So thats why I cant get too amped up over him. Hes holding the seat for us, fine. We need to see about building up a real challenger with some real chops, like Schneiderman. By that time he will be ready to head to the Treasury in a Clinton Administration realizing there is no future presidency in the works. And then we can put in a more Democratic governor.

                  •  I guess I think the approval isn't 'intense (0+ / 0-)

                    Thus the polls supporting no name challenger to Andy and the total no existence of real grass roots support.

                    But it will probably play put the way you forecast.

                    a Ravitch run would be good for NYS and the country.  Too many triangulators in Dem party supporting ed 'reform'. Like Rahm Emmanuel, Corey Booker.  

                    Might not be good for her.  They spent $5 million trashing de Blasio over 3 charter schools. Imagine they'll invest a little more to beat up on Ravitch.

                    •  He's got a war chest to burn through, (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      rexxnyc

                      considering the token opposition on the GOP side. And I suspect he would use it to prop up the GOP and force WFP into minor party status since there is no threat to him actually losing the election.

                      Im a pick battles carefully kind of guy. Unless there is scandal on the horizon, and their could be...this wouldnt be the time to pick a fight with Cuomo.

                      After the election, however, there are numerous ways to begin throwing wrenches into his national considerations.

                      •  agreed but its only 1/3 of Bloombergs 2009 (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        brooklynbadboy

                        one on one he'll kill Astorino

                        but he's such an as**ole on schools; there's now a generation of parents whose kids keep getting put through this crap.  ravitch is well know among them and would get great support

                        Compare to NYC 2009 - it would have been a good fight

                        he's less liked than Bloomberg
                        she's got alot more to say than Thompson

                        anyway, she seems to be saying no - see below or just look at her blog

                        Maybe Barron will run again.

  •  All the makings of a tragedy (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ChuckChuckerson, janosnation, brein

    because we need BOTH to relegate the GOP to secondary party status, and Teachout's understanding of how political corruption was historically treated before the rise of the new oligarchy / bankers' dictatorship.

    I hope that some people might be interested in reading what I consider a brilliant exposition of Teachout's position in her  essay, provocatively entitled The Historical Roots of Citizens United v. FEC: How Anarchists and Academics Accidentally Created Corporate Speech Rights. Here's a link to the 27-page pdf file.

    And here's a little excerpt:

    ...in the 1874 case Trist v. Childs, the Supreme Court refused to enforce a contract to lobby, because paid lobbying was so fundamentally corrupt that to use the law to enforce such a contract would be to undermine the legitimacy of the government that enforced the law.11 Ten years later in Ex Parte Yarbrough, Justice Miller wrote eloquently about how any state has, as a constitutional, foundational element, the right and duty to fight against the twin threats of violence and corruption.12 The right to combat these evils, the Court held, need not be constitutionally grounded in order to be constitutional—such rights are fundamental and presumed in the very structure of a republican state.13 Neither of these cases was an outlier. They reflected a broad consensus that one of the fundamental goals of the American constitutional system was to protect against corruption.

    A conservative is a scab for the oligarchy.

    by NBBooks on Thu May 29, 2014 at 08:20:19 AM PDT

  •  Vote for Hawkins then (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fisher1028

    There's already a leftist candidate running, Howie Hawkins with the Green Party. Let WFP continue to ally with the Democrats and vote Green if you actually want to support a left wing party

    There is truth on all sides. The question is how much.

    by slothlax on Thu May 29, 2014 at 08:59:42 AM PDT

    •  As I said above, I really like (0+ / 0-)

      Brian Jones. He taught at my kids's former elementary and I wish they had been there when he was.

    •  There really isn't a more useless, (0+ / 0-)

      more utterly irrelevant party in the country than the NY Greens. Howie Hawkins has been instrumental in making sure they remain that way.

      "after the Rapture, we get all their shit"

      the albany project.

      by lipris on Fri May 30, 2014 at 09:01:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Odd statement (0+ / 0-)

        given that he won them their first permanent line last go round.

        For a 3rd party in NYS, that is effective, not useless.

        Maybe I'm missing something.

        "There was no such thing as a "wealthy" hunter-gatherer. It is the creation of human society that has allowed the wealthy to become wealthy. As such, they have an obligation to pay a bit more to sustain that society than the not-so-wealthy." - Me

        by Darth Stateworker on Fri May 30, 2014 at 12:19:48 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  They had a line in 1996 as well (0+ / 0-)

          but who's counting? Regardless, they are a non entity in NYS. They don't work with anyone else, they're completely insular, they work to actually build any power of their own, they don't do any organizing, don't much work locally where they might actually be able to begin building something and because of this they are regarded, if they are regarded at all, as complete non entities. No one is afraid of them and no one cares what they think about...anything.

          Contrast this with WFP who does organize, who does build coalitions, who actually pushes legislation that sometimes even passes, who busts ass in local races and, subsequently, does scare people, who does garner respect, who actually fucking matters.

          Consider the fact that nobody gives two shits who the Greens nominate for anything. They nominated a flake like Hawkins again and nobody cares.

          WFP considers possibly (probably) endorsing someone other than Cuomo and all of a sudden it's a shitshow.

          What does that tell you?

          "after the Rapture, we get all their shit"

          the albany project.

          by lipris on Fri May 30, 2014 at 04:48:20 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I must be missing something again. (0+ / 0-)

            Because I could have sworn that Hawkins this year publicly proposed to work with the WFP to challenge Cuomo.  That's not sufficient?  What's he supposed to do?  Beg?  Bribe someone?

            I'm not sure exactly what kind of leadership you expect from Hawkins, but for a guy with a full time, real blue-collar job - unlike most pols - I'd say he's done pretty well.  At the end of the day, they're a 3rd party with no major backing.  They aren't going to go much of anywhere.  The WFP, on the other hand, has major backing from unions - because the unions formed the party.

            As far as your issues with Hawkins, I dunno - it seems perhaps you have some sort of personal beef with him something, because no one can think the's that much of a failure with such vehemence and have any realistic understanding of 3rd parties in New York.  Not trying to be flippant, but that's reality - unless they have backing, they tend to fizzle.

            Also - let me add a slight correction: we're both wrong about their ballot access:  I in that they never had it, and you in that they gained it before in 1996.  They gained access for 4 years from the 1998 election.  One thing that is for certain, they can only gain access in years with a gubernatorial contest.

            From all the reporting I recall reading after the 2010 election, they've never had it before.  Apparently, the reporters missed this, so I did as well.

            "There was no such thing as a "wealthy" hunter-gatherer. It is the creation of human society that has allowed the wealthy to become wealthy. As such, they have an obligation to pay a bit more to sustain that society than the not-so-wealthy." - Me

            by Darth Stateworker on Fri May 30, 2014 at 05:33:46 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I'll just say this (0+ / 0-)

              Cuomo and his folks are going all out tonight to win over WFP. No one gives a shit who the Greens run.

              Nobody.

              "after the Rapture, we get all their shit"

              the albany project.

              by lipris on Fri May 30, 2014 at 06:29:50 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I know that. (0+ / 0-)

                I just diaried it, because I'm disgusted that they are apparently rolling over for Cuomo.  He's a douchenozzle.

                And that's putting it as politely as I can because the man is so repulsive.

                CWA and SEIU 1199 can take a long walk off a short pier for helping to organize this rollover as far as I'm concerned.

                "There was no such thing as a "wealthy" hunter-gatherer. It is the creation of human society that has allowed the wealthy to become wealthy. As such, they have an obligation to pay a bit more to sustain that society than the not-so-wealthy." - Me

                by Darth Stateworker on Fri May 30, 2014 at 07:02:00 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  That's one way to see it (0+ / 0-)

            Another way to put it is that the WFP plays insider while the Greens play outsider. I've never once seen an actual WFP candidate in any election that I have voted in, they always endorse the Democrat or (rarely) the Republican. Even the Independence Party has had its own candidate at least once in a race I could vote in, IIRC.  The Greens cross endorsed Democrats in Syracuse Common Council races in the 90s mostly to suport living wage ordinances and were betrayed, kind of like how the WFP is betrayed over and over again by the Democrats it cross endorses (Cuomo is a good example of this). Ever since then the local Greens have run their own candidates. I'm not impressed by their organization or results, as you rightly point out. They had a real opportunity here in the Syracuse mayoral race last year and completely squandered it. The GOP didn't even field a candidate, but the guy on the Conservative line still got more votes than the Greens. That said, when I vote Democrat I do it on the WFP for the same reason people on the right vote on the Conservative line. When I want to vote for an actual leftist, I vote Green.

            There is truth on all sides. The question is how much.

            by slothlax on Sat May 31, 2014 at 10:32:03 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Pathetic of Markos... (7+ / 0-)

    ...to harp on some feud he had with Teachout ten years ago.  Since then she has done tremendous work in the anti-corruption arena, from running the Sunlight Foundation, authoring numerous articles (and now a book) pushing innovative legal theories for fighting Citizens United, even working with Occupy Wall Street.   She has fought big banks and the telecom industry.   If she is nominated, she will have name recognition pretty quick.  

    Very disappointing that Kos would pretend he was going to support the WFP unless this person, who he feuded with more than a decade ago, is nominated.

    I say this as someone who has worked with Zephyr and understands NY politics, probably better than the Californian who posted this.

    http://livingthedream.org

    by janosnation on Thu May 29, 2014 at 09:06:29 AM PDT

    •  I know of her from Bill Moyers and Chris Hayes (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      janosnation

      She's extremely sharp, has compelling things to say about issues that are important to me, and she's great on TV.

      I find Kos's issues with her unconvincing.  As a non-resident of New York, I think she'd be a great candidate for WFP.

      Do you really want to live in a county where a handful of billionaires control our economy and our political life while the middle class disappears? This is the question of our time. We've got to stand up and fight back. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT)

      by Scott Martin on Thu May 29, 2014 at 10:45:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Issue with Zephy isn't her name (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Odysseus, brein, MadEye

    but the nonchalance with which she lobs accusations around and is taken as a very serious person, unlike those dirty bloggers.

    I remember that incident Kos refers to as well, and I will never take that woman seriously because she did that and as far as I recall, never once admitted error.

    For real Texas Kaos, you want texaskaos.net, not .com. Before you win, you have to fight. Come fight along with us

    by boadicea on Thu May 29, 2014 at 09:22:01 AM PDT

  •  Why is Teachout a joke? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    janosnation

    Because his name sounds funny? I seem to be missing something. A law professor who has advocated against corruption and money in politics doesn't sound like an unreasonable candidate to me.

    I'm not from N.Y., so there may be more to this story that I'm unaware of. But if Teachout is such a bad candidate, I'd like to know why.

    Wealth doesn't trickle down -- it rises up.

    by elsaf on Thu May 29, 2014 at 09:36:44 AM PDT

  •  I Disagree with Kos (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Scott Martin, janosnation, Mannie

    I understand why Teachout annoyed him, but I think what she wrote was accurate and not an attack on Kos:
    "On Dean's campaign, we paid Markos and Jerome Armstrong as consultants, largely in order to ensure that they said positive things about Dean. We paid them over twice as much as we paid two staffers of similar backgrounds, and they had several other clients. While they ended up also providing useful advice, the initial reason for our outreach was explicitly to buy their airtime. To be very clear, they never committed to supporting Dean for the payment -- but it was very clearly, internally, our goal."

    I think this is more of a negative about Dean's campaign staff (and perhaps Teachout), than it is an attack on Kos. As far as I can tell, Teachout was telling the truth, but obviously the Dean campaign would never say that to Kos (who admitted that the Dean campaign never listened to him, which sort of confirms Teachout's story).

    So I can hardly see why Teachout should be disqualified for this one minor dispute. As for Ravitch, I admire her work on education recently, but I have no idea of her views on other policies. Let's not forget that she was Assistant Secretary of Education under George H.W. Bush and beloved by conservatives until just a few years ago.

    As for the notion that Teachout will get ripped apart by experienced political people, let's not forget that an unknown progressive law professor with even less political experience named Elizabeth Warren did very well indeed.

    The Most Dangerous Man in America: Rush Limbaugh's Assault on Reason (www.limbaughbook.com).

    by JohnKWilson on Thu May 29, 2014 at 09:41:28 AM PDT

    •  I don't think she is disqualified for this. Rather (0+ / 0-)

      she's simply not a strong candidate. As such, she won't achieve a privileged ballot position for the WFP nor will her candidacy challenge the Republican Party's status in NY. Nominating her is a waste of opportunity for WFP and it would be a shame.

      That said, I've never thought of the WFP as progressive, not from the start and notwithstanding the way they talk about themselves. Actions speak louder than words and this action wouldn't surprise me at all.

      The good we secure for ourselves is precarious and uncertain, is floating in mid-air, until it is secured for all of us and incorporated into our common life. Jane Addams

      by Alice Olson on Thu May 29, 2014 at 04:08:41 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The strikes against her are supposedly: (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        nimh

        That she has no name recognition and no electoral experience. I don't see how the same isn't true of Diane Ravitch. (Leaving aside that the WFP can't nominate someone who doesn't want to run.)

  •  Sorry, Kos (6+ / 0-)

    Prefer to her from a more objective source on Teachout's merits.

    "When dealing with terrorism, civil and human rights are not applicable." Egyptian military spokesman.

    by Paleo on Thu May 29, 2014 at 10:31:28 AM PDT

  •  Diane Ravitch says she's no candidate (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    brooklynbadboy

    from her blog:

    In the past two days, there has been speculation in the media that I might be a candidate for governor on behalf of the Working Families Party.

    I have not sought this designation nor am I running for any political office. There are many well-qualified candidates, and I expect that WFP will choose one of them.

    •  This is what we used to call a non-denial denial. (0+ / 0-)

      It's true she hasn't sought it and I've no doubt she trusts the WFP to chone a well-qualified candidate. Nowhere does she say that she is not available to WFP.

      The good we secure for ourselves is precarious and uncertain, is floating in mid-air, until it is secured for all of us and incorporated into our common life. Jane Addams

      by Alice Olson on Thu May 29, 2014 at 04:04:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Her signature issue is political corruption (0+ / 0-)

    And that makes her a logical choice. Kos, I can understand your preference, but I don't think Teachout is as awful a choice as you claim.
    The main thing is not Cuomo+WFP+netroots power.

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