Regardless of what is said below, tea party members and others concerned about the direction of our country must get out to vote. We have some promising congressional elections in New York even if not such good polling in statewide elections. We might be a minority in New York, but we should show ourselves to be as large of a minority as possible.
New York is a deep blue state. The majority of people continue to vote in status quo big government politicians, and there seems to be little outrage when things like the VLT scandal are revealed. Despite the loss of 1.5 million people (according to a print only article in the Albany Times Union a few Sundays back) for states with lower costs, the majority of voters seem to just want more of the same in mediocrity, high property taxes, and an environment where chosen businesses will only relocate to the state if they get enough corporate welfare. Of course, that corporate welfare ultimately costs the middle and lower classes in higher land taxes to pay for more government services, but people don’t care. As to the 1.5 million who left for less expensive states, as New York is one of the best states for welfare and Medicaid, they can be replaced by people who will continue to vote in the status quo. The burden to pay for this will of course fall on a smaller and smaller group of people who cannot afford to move out.
There was never a question that Andrew Cuomo was going to win the governor’s race as polls show. This is New York. New Yorkers seem to want the status quo(mo). A nobody with a “D” after their name could win. Yet for some reason, due to the frustration people are feeling, Cuomo’s statements in the 90 Minute Comedy Variety Show Starring Jimmy McMillan (aka the 2010 New York Gubernatorial Debate), occasionally seemed to reflect tea party ideals. Of course, they were packaged in a polished career politician style presentation. I doubt Cuomo will actually stick to these ideals once he takes over. What will be more interesting is to see the share of the vote given to Paladino. The self-proclaimed “steamroller” won nearly 70% of the vote against John Faso in 2006. Had the uninspiring and boring Rick Lazio remained on the ticket, I suspect he would have been lucky to get 25% of the vote. Paladino could win a higher share of the votes.
In one of the US Senate races, a majority of New Yorkers will likely choose Chuck Schumer, a man who likes big government regulations but does not agree with personally following them. When he was told to turn off his cell phone by a flight attendant, he called her a filthy name. Schumer’s rubber stamp, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, was sitting next to him when he did that and did not seem to have a problem with it. But then, she defers to Schumer most of the time anyway. Despite the Democrats protecting Gillibrand from any serious primary challenge, and despite her near total change in position from her days as Congresswoman from the 20th District, a majority of New Yorkers will likely vote to give Schumer what is basically his “second vote” (the only US Senator to have one) for two more years.
In the attorney general and comptroller races, it is likely that the candidate with a “D” after their name will win.
As an uber liberal state, the tea party in New York is small compared to other states. But let’s look at what the tea party has done in NY. The favored candidates by the dysfunctional New York State Republican Party to run for the governor’s race and the Gillibrand Senate seat were beaten by tea party favored outsiders who had to gather signatures to get into the primary. At least for a time, Cuomo did not have smooth sailing to the governor’s mansion. This is a step.
While other states which are more centrist or conservative leaning may see the status quo changed in the 2010 election, things will be far more gradual in New York. We can’t expect serious change in one election cycle. Change will take several election cycles here. Some might point to Massachusetts where Scott Brown won and ask why the same can’t happen in NY. First, Brown is a RINO. Second, he won in a special election where people from all over the country could concentrate their efforts. In 2010, New York is competing with almost every other state. Even some in New York may be helping candidates who are from states where they have a better chance to win. Certainly there is very little outside help coming in.
So, while liberals might be quick to use tunnel vision and focus on New York as some sort of barometer of tea party success, it’s just wishful thinking on their part. Rather than being discouraged, we can look at what is happening in other states. Clearly, not enough people have woken up in New York. But don’t worry. Just give the projected winners time to wake more people up. Conditions in New York will get worse. Whether people become part of the “tea party” movement or not, more and more will see that there is a problem as time goes on. A few more election cycles will be needed before New York catches up to much of the rest of the country.