2010-09-03 / Columnists

The Rockaway Beat

Who I Like In The Upcoming Primaries; Or, Who Are The LOC’s
Commentary By Howard Schwach

The Wave does not generally endorse candidates in primary elections, so it will be more than a month before the newspaper endorses any of the candidates for the November 2 election.

Having said that, this has been an interesting election season, and I thought it might be instructive to talk about the candidates running for both state-wide and local seats prior to the September 14 primary elections.

I have left out the Lieutenant Governor race because it is meaningless, unless the governor can’t control his or her urges.

In addition, I have not noted the party’s candidate for any race where there is no primary election.

There are some races where there is no candidate that I could, in all good conscience, support for the job. In that case, I guess it’s off to the LOC, the Least Objectionable Candidate and, in some cases, the candidates are so objectionable that I might not be able to vote for any of them.

GOVERNOR Democratic Primary

Andrew Cuomo will be running in the primary elections against Jimmy McMillan. If you have never heard of McMillan, you are in good company. There is no doubt who will win the Democratic primary. Cuomo has been groomed for his moment in history the minute he was born to Mario and Matilda.

Republican Primary

There are three candidates running for the chance to run against Democrat Andrew Cuomo: Rick Lazio, Art Luse and Carl Palidino. It is amazing how little any of the Republican candidates have to bring to the battle with Cuomo. Lazio has proven over and over again that he can’t win. This year, he has even refused to debate with Palidino, his closest rival. There is a chance that Palidino can pull off an upset, but chances are, in November, you are going to see Cuomo versus Lazio.

STATE COMPTROLLER Democratic Primary

The incumbent, Thomas DiNapoli, will be facing challenger Rosemarie Montague in the primary. Montague has little name recognition and DiNapoli has done a reasonably good job in keeping tabs on where the money goes. His recent audit of overtime at the MTA was an example of what the comptroller can do.

ATTORNEY GENERAL Democratic Primary

This is proving to be one of the more interesting races, if only because of the crowded field. In alphabetical order, you have Richard Brodsky, Sean Coffey, Eric Dinallo, Bill Jurow, Ruth Pollack, Kathleen Rice and Eric Schneiderman. The race, however, seems to be shaking down in a way to bring three of the candidates to the foreground, and one of the three will probably be the winner. They are Brodsky, Rice and Schneiderman. All are experienced people and any one of them could probably fill the seat left vacant by Cuomo. Personally, I like Kathleen Rice for the job.

UNITED STATES SENATOR UNEXPIRED TERM Democratic Primary

This is the election to fill the twoyear unexpired term of Hillary Clinton, who went on to become our Secretary of State. The Democratic Primary hosts three candidates:

Kirsten Gillibrand, who was appointed by Governor David Paterson and has been filling the seat since Clinton left, will be running in the primary against Gail Goode and Joseph Huff. The fact that nobody with any credentials is running against Gillibrand will tell you the extent that Chuck Schumer and other local Democrats went to keep everybody else out of the race. Gillibrand is not widely popular, and although she can easily beat her Democratic rivals, she may have some problems keeping her seat in the general election.

Republican Primary

There are three Republicans who want to challenge Gillibrand: Bruce Blakeman, Joseph DioGuardi and David Malpass. DioGuardi came into The Wave for an interview last week, which I thought was interesting. He is a dynamic personality, and has served for a term in the House of Representatives. I watched the three debate each other on New York 1 News last week, and none really distinguished themselves.

UNITED STATES SENATOR FULL TERM Democratic Primary

This is the seat now held by Charles Schumer, and you can bet that it will still be held by Schumer after the November election. There is, however, a challenger to Schumer in the September primary. His name is

Randy Credico, and you can forget it right now.

Republican Primary

There are two Republicans vying for Schumer’s seat – Gary Bernsten and Jay Townsend. Even in this year of dissatisfaction over incumbents and the Democratic legislators, neither of them has a chance against the Schumer machine.

STATE SENATOR, 10TH DISTRICT Democratic Primary

The incumbent, Shirley Huntley, is being challenged by Lynn Nunes. The big issue in the election seems to be same sex marriage. Huntley is opposed, while Nunes is in favor. Huntley has been doing a good job for Broad Channel, which is the only local neighborhood she represents.

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