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The Daily News cranks it up this way: Staten Island Republican power broker Guy Molinari has withdrawn his support of Joe Lhota all because the former MTA boss' campaign wouldnt return his phone calls. This allegedly raises questions about the sluggish start to Lhotas mayoral campaign. The Post, in its version, notes that Molinari "helped pull out the island vote to elect Rudy Giuliani and Mike Bloomberg mayor in an overwhelmingly Democratic city."
Sorry, but can we really conclude wider truths based on what the former congressman and borough president says to a reporter on a given day, no matter how garrulous, vivid and amusing the man may be?
Molinaris provocative attention-getters, and his feuds with one-time allies, are famous and too numerous to recount. Probably best known: He called Rudy Giuliani a Judas for endorsing Gov. Mario Cuomo against the 1994 GOP candidate, George Pataki. By 2008, of course, Molinari was heading the New York campaign for Giuliani.
Formally speaking, Molinari is out of office. How much power he "brokers" is a question mark in the "forgotten borough". The countys Republican committee is still with Lhota, as the story notes, and its not as if New Dorp, Midland Beach and Tottenville are on the verge of an uprising in favor of former Democratic Bronx Borough president Adolfo Carrion, now the purportedly preferred Molinari candidate.
It's only February, folks. A single Molinari turnaround does not an election make. It may just mean that Lhota didn't pay him enough attention which could be good or bad, depending how you view it.