Rockaway Republicans Host U.S. Senate Underdog
Mills, who the New York Times this week called an invisible “unknown soldier” of a challenger to incumbent Charles E. Schumer, told the party supporters who gathered that he’s hopeful that an upcoming “coordinated media effort” will raise his profile and draw attention to Schumer’s legislative record.
“[Schumer] has a record that does not merit his reelection to the senate,” said Mills, pointing to the 157 bills the incumbent introduced in congress, of which 12 became law – 10 re-namings of post offices, courthouses and a cemetery. Schumer began television advertisements this week touting other accomplishments.
Mills also criticized Schumer for dedicating too much attention to self-promotion through Sunday press conferences and volumes of media releases. He also suggested that Schumer’s eye is on the New York governor’s office for 2006.
“If he starts running for governor after he’s reelected he’ll be absentee on top of ineffective,” Mills said.
Mills, who is still pursuing a debate with Schumer, candidly addressed his underdog status, but said optimistically, “Four weeks in politics is still a long time.”
The meeting – which competed against the Vice Presidential debate and the Yankee playoff game – was attended by about 40 people including State Senator Serphin Maltese, Republican District Leader Ed O’Hare and Wave columnists and Rockaway Republican Secretary Stu Mirsky and Beverly Baxter.
Maltese rallied the room when he said President George W. Bush is the man the country “can rely on to protect our families and our homes.” He urged the group to reach out throughout the borough for party support.
Tom Lynch, president of the seven-month-old Rockaway Republicans, said the group kick-started the party in southern Queens. The group has hosted two parties to support President Bush, a cruise during the Republican National Convention, and has gathered about 675 signatures on a letter from Rockaway residents to the president. Guitar duo “Aerial Acoustics” provided a musical backdrop and Papa’s Pizza gave gratis grub for the meeting.