Good afternoon. Today’s points:
- Ruling puts CD3 candidate in past tense
- Fox News Channel, “ a Long Island station”
- A double-edged victory
Going down with a fight?
In an election battle that never seems to get to an election, it appears Philip Pidot, a GOP candidate in the 3rd Congressional District, has finally gotten a court order that has persuaded him to pull the plug on his campaign.
On Wednesday, a federal appeals court in Manhattan vacated a ruling that set an Oct. 6 GOP primary between Pidot and Jack Martins. Legal wrangling over Pidot’s ballot eligibility kept the intraparty fight off the ballot in June’s primary for federal offices.
Martins had failed in a protracted battle to overturn enough of Pidot’s petition signatures to knock him out of the race. Martins’ camp often claimed, though, that Pidot had dragged his feet in the way he disputed Martins’ case.
Throughout the process, Pidot has not shown a hint of quitting. But on Wednesday afternoon, he said in a statement:
“I take enormous pride, though, in the issues raised by my campaign and in the mettle we showed in taking on a political machine that has helped drive New York State into the ground in comfortable and perennial conjunction with Albany Democrats.”
The past tense tells the tale — probably. In this race, a statement that Pidot is walking away from the battle needs to be hedged with a “maybe.”
Our ears perked up
Wednesday on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” host Joe Scarborough dropped a bombshell on an unsuspecting nation, announcing that Fox News Channel is a “Long Island station.”
Scarborough and co-host Mika Brzezinski were interviewing author Edward Conard about his book “The Upside of Inequality,” along with commentators Mike Lupica and Mike Barnicle, when Lupica said of Donald Trump, “How did a 70-year-old rich guy somehow portray himself as a hero of the middle class in this race?”
In response, Scarborough said it was because Trump, who was raised in Queens, has an edge to his personality that people relate to because, “He’s always been kicked around in Manhattan; he’s never been admitted in polite society.”
From there, somehow, Scarborough jumped to Long Island, saying, “You look at Fox News, and people around the country don’t realize that’s a Long Island station. I mean their . . . their stars, Hannity, O’Reilly, are products of Long Island. They’ve got that grit. They’ve got that edge.”
Hannity was raised in Franklin Square. O’Reilly grew up in Levittown.
So does it follow that Long Island relates to Trump? Well, he did get 73 percent of the GOP primary vote in Suffolk County and 68 percent in Nassau. And in the general election? Hillary Clinton now looks almost certain to take New York, but Long Island could be too close to call.
State GOP's double-edged sword
No sooner had Marisol Alcantara eked out a victory in the crowded Democratic primary in the 31st State Senate District in Manhattan and the Bronx than her campaign manager said Alcantara would join the Independent Democratic Conference upon her now near-certain election in November.
That was not only a win for Bronx Sen. Jeff Klein and his five-member IDC, which financially supported Alcantara in Tuesday’s primary, it also was a victory for the Republican Party and Majority Leader John Flanagan. The GOP and IDC control the Senate in a power-sharing arrangement, and adding Alcantara to the fold would mean Republicans could win one less seat in November and still maintain control — assuming the two groups continue to play ball.
Another member only increases the power — and leverage — of the IDC to get what it wants. GOP, beware.
Alcantara’s victory also was part of a big night for Adriano Espaillat, the man she will replace in the Senate. Espaillat, who was born in the Dominican Republic and is consolidating an ethnic power base, earlier this year won the Democratic primary for Charlie Rangel’s congressional seat, which essentially means Espaillat will be going to Washington next year.
He endorsed Alcantara and Carmen De La Rosa, both born in the Dominican Republic. De La Rosa beat incumbent Assemb. Guillermo Linares in the 72nd District in Manhattan and the Bronx. Yes, that’s the same Linares whom Espaillat defeated in the primary for Rangel’s seat.