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Thursday, August 17, 2006

AFL-CIO Is Getting It in NY

Posted by DavidNYC

Peter King Watch provides us with a complete list of AFL-CIO House race endorsements in New York State:

1. Tim Bishop (D)
2. Steve J. Israel (D,I,WF)
3. Dave Mejias (D/WF)
4. Carolyn McCarthy (D)
5. Gary L. Ackerman (D)
6. No Endorsement
7. Joseph Crowley (D)
8. Jerrold Nadler (D)
9. Anthony Weiner (D)
10. No Endorsement
11. Carl Andrews (D)
12. Nydia M. Velazquez (D)
13. Stephen Harrison (D)
14. Carolyn B. Maloney (D)
15. Charles B. Rangel (D)
16. Jose E. Serrano (D)
17. Eliot L. Engel (D, L, WF)
18. Nita M. Lowey (D)
19. John Hall (D)
20. Kirsten Gillibrand (D/I/WF)
21. Michael R. McNulty (D)
22. Maurice Hinchey (D,I,WF)
23. John McHugh (R)
24. Mike Arcuri (D/I/WF)
25. Dan Maffei (D/WF)
26. Jack Davis, Jr. (D/I/WF)
27. Brian M. Higgins (D)
28. Louise M. Slaughter (D)
29. Eric Massa (D/WF)

Twenty-nine races and only one Republican nod. But it goes beyond that. Peter King (3rd CD) has always gotten the AFL-CIO nod in the past - this year, they're hanging him out to dry. Ed Towns (10th CD) has been an extremely disloyal Dem of late, and here the AFL is snubbing him. And as you saw a few days ago, they also switched support from Kuhl to Massa in the 29th CD. This endorsement is also welcome news for a whole spate of Dem challengers, but especially John Hall, who faces a primary in CD 19.

Unfortunately, the AFL-CIO is supporting Republican state Sen. Nicholas Spano in his rematch against Andrea Stewart-Cousins. This is really disappointing, because Stewart-Cousins lost in 2004 by a mere 18 votes - and a left-leaning group played a role in that loss.

That year, the Working Families Party (as you might guess, a pro-labor third party) gave their line to Spano - not because Stewart-Cousins had a bad record on labor issues (to the contrary), but because they thought Spano could better advance the cause of increasing the minimum wage in the state Senate. Needless to say, Spano got far more than 18 votes on the WFP line - votes which would have overwhelmingly gone to the Dem had she gotten that line instead.

Of course, a Dem-controlled Senate would be a lot more helpful to all manner of issues which affect working families, and we're very close to achieving a majority in that body. I think the WFP made a major mistake supporting Spano last time, but I think they realized that, because they did not endorse him this year. I wish the AFL-CIO would follow the WFP's lead. Hey, if they could switch from Kuhl to Massa, maybe it's not too late for Stewart-Cousins.

Posted at 01:45 PM in 2006 Elections - House, New York | Technorati

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David (or anyone else that might know)---is the AFL-CIO going to campaign on Hall's behalf before the primary election?

Posted by: NYPopulist [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 02:20 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

NYP, I don't know if the endorsement is just a piece of paper or comes with actual muscle behind it. I'd try talking to the folks at Take19.

Posted by: DavidNYC [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 02:34 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Too bad they picked my district (NY-23) to throw under the bus. Bob Johnson would make a much better congressman then the Neo-con, Iraq war loving, stem sell research opposing, John McHugh. Of course we are used to being forgotten by the rest of the state. What they don't get is there are a lot more Democrats up here than in many of those other races. The Partisan Voting Index (PVI) for the Massa race (NY29) is R + 5.2 the PVI for the Johnson race (NY23) is R + 0.2.

This one IS winnable, but no one will give us a chance. It is really frustrating sometimes. Why is it we deserve to be cursed with McHugh for another two years?

Though the Working Families Party did endorse Bob Johnson. Also, Viggo Mortensen the renowned actor from Lord of the Rings, and an outspoken peace activist and Bush critic, has endorsed Bob and he will be holding fundraisers with Bob Johnson in Septmeber.

Posted by: bobaubin [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 03:16 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Some basic research would help this post - Nick Spano was instrumental in passing an increase in the minimum wage, so he got the endorsement.

I assume you're not arguing that increasing the minimum wage isn't a big deal?

Posted by: Steve [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 04:25 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Of course not. Rather, I'm arguing that the interests of working families are better served by having a Democratic majority in the state Senate. For instance, Spano got a "D" rating from the Drum Major Institute on their Middle Class legislative scorecard.

In fact, 96% of state Senate Dems received a "C" or better, and 22% scored an A. Not a single Senate Republican scored as high as a C - indeed, 39% got Fs.

Posted by: DavidNYC [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 05:32 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

We agree. The WFP was instrumental in electing David Valesky (D-WF) to the State Senate last election, and this year we're playing a big role in defending Sen. Valesky's seat and in electing more D-WF candidates to the State Senate like David Ochoa and Brooke Ellison. WFP endorsements are online.

Posted by: Steve [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 06:13 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

This grassroots group in NYC is going to aim to take out Nick Spano and help get a Democratic Senate for the first time since FDR was Governor.

NY State was an incubator for the New Deal's policies then. We're trying to do it again.

Posted by: dereau [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 06:47 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

My brother (working in State Senator Patterson's office) is working his tail off to get Stewart-Cousins elected. After chatting with him last night, he felt that the votes were there to unseat Spano and John Bonacic in Ulster County. However, it still looks difficult to take back the NYS Senate.

He said it was highly unusual for any challenger to win the AFL-CIO endorsement over an incumbent in NY. The endorsements of Hall, Maffei, Gillibrand, Massa, Mejias, Jack Davis, and Stephen Harrison show you what the political climate looks like for Republicans in New York. The R's are going against a Cat 4 or 5 hurricane here, even in R-leaning upstate regions. Perhaps Hillary/Spitzer can even affect races all the way down to State Senate and State Assembly.

Posted by: dpinzow [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 07:54 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

I am running in the 107th State Assembly District (parts of Ulster, Delaware, Broome, and Chenango Counties), and it was quite noticable that I am just one of a very few challengers endorsed at the state level by the AFL-CIO.

Posted by: Kelk [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 17, 2006 09:27 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment