Here’s how I intend to vote tomorrow.
Governor: Eliot Spitzer (D)
Spitzer was a strong, creative attorney general for the State of New York, holding corporations accountable for their malfeasance. He was fortunate to inherit a well-run office from his predecessor, Rudolph Giuliani — good fortune that will not be repeated upon his arrival in the Governor’s Mansion in Albany. Nevertheless, his demonstrated competence and the grim state of New York politics combine to make Spitzer the obvious choice.
Lieutenant-Governor: David Paterson (D)
Okay, I’ll admit it: I’m a yellow-dog Dem this year. But why vote for a lieutenant-governor who will hamstring your choice of governor?
Comptroller: Alan Hevesi (D)
In this season of accountability, it pains me to say that I’ll be voting for a candidate I know to be corrupt (Hevesi had the state pay to chauffeur his wife around for years). Here’s my admittedly twisted logic: Hevesi is likely to be forced to resign after the election, at which time he’ll be replaced by an appointed Democrat, whereas electing his opponent, Chris Callaghan, means having a Republican in office for the next four years. And even if Hevesi does stay put, see my endorsement for lieutenant-governor.
Attorney General: Andrew Cuomo (D)
Another no-brainer. Cuomo leaves much to be desired, but the alternative is a Republican attorney general, and I really, really, really don’t want a Republican setting the priorities for law enforcement in New York.
Senator: Hillary Clinton (D)
I genuinely like Hillary Clinton as a Senator. She’s worked hard to serve her constituents and to build bridges to Republican leaders Upstate. I see no reason not to send her back to the Senate, where I hope she will serve with similar focus and competence for another six years.
Congress (11th District): Yvette Clarke (D)
I voted for Yassky in the primary, but Clarke is the Democratic candidate, we need a Democratic Congress in this country, and besides, she’s going to win by a ridiculous margin anyway. Who else would I vote for? The Freedom Party candidate?
State Senate (25th District): Ken Diamondstone (Working Families)
Diamondstone lost his primary bid against veteran State Senator Martin Connor, but as with Joe Lieberman in Connecticut, Diamondstone has a second chance. Diamondstone opposes the Atlantic Yards project, while Connor does not. More importantly, Connor is part of the stasis in Albany that has made our state governance so abysmal, while Diamondstone would be a fresh voice. From what I can tell, Diamondstone has already given up, but his name is still on the ballot, so I’m going to pull the trigger for him, just like I did in September.
State Assembly (52nd District): Joan L. Millman (D)
Woof! Woof! Heeeere, yellow dog! Have a tasty vote! Enjoy a delicious assembly seat! Good yellow doggie!
State Supreme Court Justices: Abstain
For 80 years, New York has had a corrupt system in which parties nominate judicial candidates at show-conventions, giving voters essentially no choice. This year, for example, we have two candidates to choose from and two votes to hand out. What this has to do with democracy is anyone’s guess, but the party nomination system was recently ruled unconstitutional, so let’s hope we have some competitive judicial elections in the future.
Civil Court Judge (1st District): Abstain
In this case, it’s one candidate for one slot. Ick. See above.