Last week’s Q poll showed not only that Al Sharpton was viewed negatively by New Yorkers in every borough, it also showed that the trend in terms of a view of him was increasingly negative. For politicians like the mayor who probably care, the poll essentially indicates that it would be a good idea to stay away from him.
In fact, Sharpton’s fall from grace has been startlingly fast, and statistically significant with an overwhelmingly negative view of him held by all segments of New York exclusive of blacks but very much so by other minority communities including Hispanics. And he is even losing real ground in the black communities. Fueling hate is never a good long term strategy.
In as much as Sharpton’s power is a result of the illusion that he speaks for most of New York City’s minorities who are in reality a majority , the loss of support among Hispanics will have a devastating effect on his influence. The loss of his support will come as no surprise. He is viewed as a cause and proponent of a divisive atmosphere that has taken hold over our city.
At least we can now take some solace in the knowledge that most New Yorkers understand what Sharpton is about. That will hopefully translate into less support and fewer dollars for the “preacher” who has made a profitable, apparently tax-free living out of dissent, protest and discord.
Governor Cuomo should have called the special election for the 11th Congressional District soon after Michael Grimm’s resignation. Then there would have been some opportunity to hold the election in late March, which would have been 70 to80 days, which is required by law.
Now, it would seem when if you take into account the Easter holiday, the earliest he could call it would be for late April. Others are suggesting that he might actually allow the election to go to November, as he did with the state legislative open seats last year.
This would be a mistake, not only because it would leave 750,000 people in Sothern Brooklyn and Staten Island without a representative in Congress, but because it would leave the state one congressmember short during federal budget negotiations.
It matters little to the governor if he has a full complement of state legislators for him to push his agenda or budget. It does matter to him that the state has a full congressional delegation who are essentially the state’s and his lobbyists in Washington during federal budget talks.
It is about programs, federal offsets, mandate reimbursements and whatever they call earmarks these days. It is billions of dollars to the state with a very real effect on his state budget.
So Governor Cuomo has every reason and need to call this special election if not for the sake of the residents of the district who are unrepresented – for his own sake.
There are few certainties in the world of politics, but one certainly is that Chris Christie will not be the Republican nominee for president. A governor of limited successes at home and fewer of any national noteworthiness, he keeps himself in the news by his blunt, often over-the-top remarks that happen to be within the New York City media market.
The most liberal of any of the potential Republican candidates, he indirectly aided President Obama’s re-election and directly submarined Republican Rob Astorino’s gubernatorial bid. His last two years in office have been plagued by scandals, resignations of senior staff while under federal investigation and questions about what he knew and when he knew it.
The Republican Party and the conservative movement have a number of candidates with strong credentials, solid records and a vision for America’s future. As you might have guessed, I do not think Chris Christie is one of them.