Items tagged with 'US Senate 2010'

Siena poll: Cuomo still has a big lead

cuomo and paladinoThe Siena poll out this morning reports that Andrew Cuomo leads Carl Paladino 57-24 in the race for governor (margin of error +/- 3.5). And Rick Lazio registers at... eight.

So, that's quite a different result from yesterday's Quinnipiac poll that reported Cuomo was ahead by just six points. And a Survey USA poll also out yesterday reported Cuomo was ahead by nine points.

There are a few differences between the Siena poll and the other two. First, Siena included Rick Lazio and the others did not. And the Siena poll surveyed registered voters, while the others surveyed "likely" voters.

Polling data uber-nerd Nate Silver examined the likely voter issue after Wendnesday's surprising Q Poll result. Likely voter models tend to favor Republicans a bit. But after talking with people at Quinnipiac, Silver concluded it probably doesn't explain Paladino's surge in the poll.

So... who knows where things are at right now. There are still 40 days before Election Day, which is plenty of time for the situation to change. Let's hope for a debate or two. Or at least a more interesting exchange between the candidates than a Photoshop competition.

A few other bits from the Siena poll

+ Chuck Schumer leads Jay Townsend 64-30.

+ Kirsten Gillibrand leads Joe DioGuardi 57-31 (though, that Survey USA poll only had her up 45-44)

+ No one knows who's running for attorney general. Both candidates -- Eric Schneiderman and Dan Donovan -- have don't know/no opinion scores over 60. The same thing goes for the comptroller matchup between Tom DiNapoli and Harry Wilson.

Is Kirsten Gillibrand unstoppable?

Senator Kirsten GillibrandIt appears the conventional wisdom (or whatever) is shifting from "Kirsten Gillibrand isn't going to make it" to "Kirsten Gillibrand is unstoppable." From a NYT story today about "What Makes Gillibrand Scary?":

... Ms. Gillibrand possesses assets most of the aspiring senators lack. She has a legitimate geographic base, having represented an Albany-area Congressional district in a part of the state where her family is prominent. She has a network of donors, especially women, who are not going to abandon her. She has a commitment to working her tail off to keep the seat, a fact that even her political enemies grudgingly acknowledge.
And, perhaps most important, she has $5.1 million in her campaign account.

Nothing like a big stack of money to scare off opponents. KG's skill/luck at clearing the field of electoral opponents for her Senate seat has prompted all sorts of theories, including one that involves Al D'Amato secretly supporting her while he publicly supports a Republican.

Earlier this week, a writer for TPM asserted (absurdly) that KG is... "the most powerful woman in American politics." (That kind of press should really help KG's relationship with Nancy Pelosi.) Not bad for someone whose favorable rating in the last Siena poll was just 32 percent -- with 38 percent of respondents saying they "prefer someone else" for the Senate.

And all this while she's, reportedly, busy "in the middle of diapers and bottles and bills and votes and markups."

If this kind of press keeps up, we'll await news of a kryptonite intolerance...

Earlier on AOA:
+ Describing the candidates
+ Does she sound like a senator?

Reports: Ford's out of Senate race

gillibrand and fordBoth the NY Post and NYT are reporting that Harold Ford has decided to not run against Kirsten Gillibrand for the US Senate.

From a NYT op/ed by Ford that will run in Tuesday's paper:

"I've examined this race in every possible way, and I keep returning to the same fundamental conclusion: If I run, the likely result would be a brutal and highly negative Democratic primary -- a primary where the winner emerges weak-ened and the Republican strengthened."

A Siena poll out last week reported that KG led Ford 42-16 in a hypothetical primary matchup -- even though many voters statewide were less than certain about her overall candidacy.

So, who's up next?

The word going around of late has been that Mort Zuckerman -- the owner of the New York Daily News -- has been thinking about possibly running on the Republican line. Zuckerman has mainly been a supporter of Democrats -- but apparently he thinks a run as Republican could bypass a messy primary. [CityFile] [NYT] [OpenSecrets] [NYT]

Rumors swirl about Paterson, Bruno bacon not delivered, clerk and robber crash through window, a Schenectady gift basket for Stephen Colbert

The big news at the state Capitol is... a NYT story about David Paterson... that hasn't been published yet... and no one seems to know when it will be. The story is rumored to include some sort of bombshell -- though that, too, is currently a mystery (Gawker commenters had some ideas). The governor reportedly met with Democratic party leaders over the weekend to discuss whether or not he will follow through on his vow to run for election this fall. And there are rumors about serious discontent within his administration. A spokesman for Paterson called all the recent rumors "a new low even by the standards of planet Albany." [TU] [Gawker] [AP/Post-Star] [NY Post] [CBS6]

Harold Ford accused Kirsten Gillibrand of using "underhanded tactics" in her attempt to gather early endorsements from county Democratic Party leaders around the state. Gillibrand is calling for Ford to disclose whether he got a bonus from Bank of America. [NYT] [NYO]

Much of the $75 million in state money promised by Joe Bruno just before he left office hasn't made it through. [TU]

The chairwoman of an inspector general's panel charged with tracking stimulus money says much of the federal funding distributed to New York State has yet to be spent. [TU]

The man accused of stabbing three people near the intersection of State and Henry Johnson following LarkFest last year was convicted on Friday on three counts of assault. He could get 25-50 years in prison. The victims said the man ran at them, shirtless, and yelled "I live for this, this is what I do!" during the attack. The man had been up for trial in 2008 for another alleged stabbing in Troy in 2007, but a judge tossed the case for procedural reasons. [CapNews9] [Troy Record] [CBS6] [Troy Record] [TU]

A Schenectady man died from carbon monoxide poisoning in his apartment after turning on his stove to keep warm because the apartment's thermostat was malfunctioning, keeping the heat down. [Daily Gazette $]

(there's more)

No jail time for pedestrian death, RPI mansion zoning app bounced, Ford and Gillibrand race for donors, Schenectady beckons to Stephen Colbert

The woman who pleaded guilty to hitting and killing a pedestrian -- and then temporarily driving away -- on Madison Ave in Albany a year ago was sentenced to probation, restitution and community service. The victim's family said justice was not served by the sentencing. The judge presiding over the case said the misdemeanor plea deal "on its face, does not look right." Prosecutors say the evidence didn't support a felony charge. [Troy Record] [WTEN] [TU] [Fox23]

Congress Street in Troy between 15th Street and Brunswick Ave will be closed today from 10 am - 4:30 pm for what the city says is the emergency demolition of a building (map). The city's engineer says the front wall of the former Industrial Tool and Die building "could rupture at any time." The building had already been slated for demo. (CBS6 says it will be streaming video of the demolition.) [@TroyMayor] [TU] [Troy Record] [CBS6]

Troy's Zoning Board of Appeals has bounced RPI's application for a height variance for the new president's mansion. [Troy Record]

David Paterson the vetoed the legislature's ethics reform package. The governor said the bill didn't go far enough. Legislative leaders are now talking about trying to override the veto. [TU] [NYDN] [NYT]

(there's more)

Ford on the Colbert Report

Harold Ford was on the Colbert Report last night. As Colbert remarked: "Evidently six minutes at my interview table counts as New York State residency." Ford continued to assert that he's "always been pro-choice" -- and said that his view on a same-sex marriage is "a changed position."

Colbert also recommended that Ford make a helicopter touch-and-go visit to Schenectady.

Kirsten Gillibrand was also on TV last night -- she talked with Rachel Maddow about Don't Ask, Don't Tell (KG is pushing for the policy to be repealed). That video is embedded after the jump.

Also: A Marist poll out yesterday reports that Gillibrand leads Ford in a hypothetical primary 44-27 (25 percent were "unsure").

And get this: the Marist poll also reported that Chuck Schumer's approval rating is now below 50 percent for the first time 2001.

Earlier on AOA:
+ It's on
+ Describing the candidates
+ Does she sound like a senator?
+ The quick scan of Ford/Gillibrand

It's on

You kind of get the feeling that Kirsten Gillibrand had just about enough of all the Harold Ford stuff yesterday. After tweeting about his "parakeet" comment, she then proceeded to seek out the media in an effort to repeatedly slam Ford.

gillibrand ford badgeTo the AP: Ford was "unable to convince Tennessee voters to trust him or put their vote in him, and now he's moved to New York and thinks he should be senator."

To the TU: "I don't know who he thinks I am, but I'm certainly not going to be pushed aside by him and a few of his banker buddies." (Ford is on leave from Bank of America/Merril Lynch.)

To the NY Daily News: "He waltzed into his father's congressional seat after failing the bar. And then he comes to New York City and joins a big bank, and is now running with a few banker buddies and thinks he should be in the US Senate."

To the New York Times: "For him to say he is an outsider and an independent is laughable."

To the NY Post: "All we know about him is his record, which is abysmal for New York."

In polls people keep saying they don't know enough or have no opinion about KG. If this keeps up, you gotta think that will change -- for better or worse.

By the way: there is someone who has officially announced a challenge to Gillibrand for the Democratic nomination -- though his mom seems concerned that he's spending too much on campaign buttons.

Oh, yeah: In that clip above, Stephen Colbert named Harold Ford "Alpha Dog of the Week," in part for "Lifting your leg on New Yorkers and telling us it's just egg cream."

On parakeets

parakeetsAt the Capitol yesterday in Albany, Harold Ford said this about Kirsten Gillibrand and Chuck Schumer:

"Understand that you are not elected to the United States Senate to be a parakeet, or take instructions from the Democratic leadership."

To which Kirsten Gillibrand (or whoever tweets for her) responded around noon today via Twitter:

"Parakeet?" I wouldn't allow my 6 yr old to engage in this kind of namecalling. And HF thinks he should be Senator?

Presumably she also wanted to add: "I'm rubber and you're glue, whatever you say bounces off me and sticks on you" -- but, well, you know, Twitter limits you to 140 characters.

Ford is also on Twitter. Sadly, there have been no @ responses between the two. Yet.

By the way: Ford had an op/ed piece in NYT yesterday about how the Democrats could chart a "better course."

Earlier on AOA:
+ Describing the candidates
+ Does she sound like a senator?
+ The quick scan of Ford/Gillibrand

photo: Flickr user Young in Panama

Describing the candidates

gillibrand ford badgeWe couldn't help but notice the juxtaposition in coverage of Harold Ford and Kirsten Gillibrand this past weekend.

From the New York Times:

Mr. Ford, a five-term congressman from Tennessee, has given himself until the end of February to decide whether to challenge Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand in New York's Democratic primary, but in the first week of a statewide tour, he is quickly revealing what kind of candidate he would be: an effortless retail politician, equally at ease in baroque restaurants and Baptist churches, who makes instant, Clinton-like connections with voters.

And from the New York Daily News:

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is turning herself into a leaner, meaner campaigning machine - showing a slimmer silhouette as a tough election battle looms.
Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) confirmed to the Daily News what observers have been noticing in recent months - she's dropped some pounds.
She declined to say how many, but outsiders are betting 15 to 20.

Let's just go on the record right now: we won't even think of voting for Harold Ford until we know how many calories he eats each day.

By the way: Ford is at the Capitol in Albany today and says he's strongly considering a challenge to Gillibrand for the Democratic nomination. [@kaitlynross1] [@WNYT]

Earlier on AOA:
+ Does she sound like a senator?
+ The quick scan of Ford/Gillibrand

Does she sound like a senator?


Gillibrand's speech after being appointed to replace Hillary Clinton


A Siena poll out this week reported that only 29 percent of respondents said they would like to vote for Kirsten Gillibrand for US Senate in November -- 45 percent said they preferred someone else. That's a trend that's pretty much held steady since KG was appointed to replace Hillary Clinton a year ago.

So why don't voters seem to warming to Gillibrand? The NYO's Reid Pillifant recently offered a theory that was new to us: it's KG's speaking voice. From his Pillifant's piece:

"Kirsten Gillibrand has what I would call a non-regional American young female's accent," wrote Dr. Bert Vaux, a sociolinguistics scholar at the University of Cambridge, who was asked by The Observer to analyze Ms. Gillibrand's public speaking. "Though I lack the phonetic expertise to put my finger on what exactly is involved in this, her voice quality is of the sort that is typically associated with pre-workforce-age white American females. Judging by the case of this woman, this speech pattern has now extended into higher age ranges."

Pillifant goes on to note that Harold Ford is an excellent public speaker. Here's Ford speaking at a MLK Day event this week (with Gillibrand in the background).

We always thought the KG/Tracy Flick comparison was cheap and wrong. But we have to admit that when we watched her "accept" the appointment last January, we thought: "It kind of sounds like she's running for student body president."

A few other bits about Gillibrand/Ford after the jump.

(there's more)

The quick scan of Ford/Gillibrand

Harold FordWe've put off writing about the potential Harold Ford challenge to Kirsten Gillibrand all week.

It's probably because whenever the story's come up, we've just thought, "Dude. Run. Don't run. Make-up your mind. All this non-campaigning campaigning is boring." (Maybe we're fatigued by Andrew Cuomo.)

So it goes. Here's the quick scan of the whole week of will-he-should-he-what-if...

(there's more)

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