Rep. Sweeney: GOP should delay vote on statewide candidates
WASHINGTON -- New York U.S. Rep. John Sweeney said Tuesday that GOP leaders should put off a Dec. 12 vote to endorse candidates for governor and U.S. Senate in 2006, saying the party needs more time.
The comments by Sweeney, R-Clifton Park, echo those made Monday by state Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno as the beleaguered state party seeks to mount viable campaigns up and down the ticket.
New York's 62 county GOP chairmen are due to meet Dec. 12 to settle on their endorsements for the two top races in the state next year. State GOP Chairman Stephen Minarik has called for the meeting and vote.
"I think it's just too risky right now," said Sweeney. "I respect that it's their choice, but my gut tells me that it's a little premature, that they just need a little more time to establish a clear picture for the committee chairmen to make their choice."
Sweeney, a former executive director of the state party, said that without more time, the party risks alienating key voters who may either back other candidates or simply stay home on Election Day 2006.
"We still have a little bit of time, I believe over the next four or five months we need to develop our candidates," said Sweeney.
Damn right. As it stands right now, Democratic candidates for statewide offices are the only ones with name recognition. AG Eliot Spitzer appears to be running unopposed for Governor. Westchester County DA Janine Pirro appears to pose minimal threat to Madame Hillary's reelection bid for US Senate. On that note:
Bruno: Pirro should quit anti-Clinton race
ALBANY, N.Y. -- The most powerful Republican in the state Legislature called Tuesday for Jeanine Pirro to give up her quest to unseat Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton in 2006 and run instead for state attorney general.
Pirro, in a statement, declined to heed the advice.
State Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno said the Westchester County district attorney could win the attorney general's race, while in running for Senate, "she's going to have one of the most competitive races in the state."
Independent polls have shown the former first lady well ahead of Pirro.
"I hope that before this procedure gets too much further along that Jeanine Pirro would reconsider and run for AG.," Bruno told a state Capitol news conference.
In a statement issued by her campaign, Pirro said: "Senator Bruno is a respected majority leader and I appreciate his confidence in my abilities. However, I am a candidate for U.S. Senate."
Democrats were quick to pounce on Bruno's statements with state Democratic Chairman Herman Farrell saying, "This is clearly a major blow and an obvious indication of how difficult top Republicans believe it will be to defeat Senator Clinton."
The GOP in NY better get its act together, and soon. Many of us are sick and tired of the also-ran candidacies we've seen from Republicans in this state. I'm thinking specifically of the sorry run against Chucky Scummer for Senate in 2004. Chuckie won with over 70% of the vote. Since then he's been more unbearable than ever. Landslide victories tend to take these arrogant libs to new heights of jackassedness. If Hillary wins one, she'll start believing she's indestructible. Then you'll be seeing her--and her pathetic narcissistic hubby--on the national stage 24/7. They'll be running their mouths incessantly, lecturing us on everything; assuring us that they can solve all our problems. I don't know about you, but the very idea makes me nauseous.
The GOP needs to start playing for keeps in this state before their supporters start staying home in droves. And their party ceases to exist here.