Sunday, November 30, 2008

Focus Media Nets Townsend As New C.O.O.

Jay Townsend

Conngrats to Josh Sommers on his new hire, it's disappointing to see that Josh will no longer be working on political campaigns. I had the opportunity to get to know and work with Josh and he is one of the best in the business here locally. I recommend Focus media to anyone or buisness looking to get their message out. Below is the story from the Record.

MONTICELLO — Focus Media, the public relations and marketing firm that has made a reputation with campaigns getting Democrats elected to office, has hired Republican strategist Jay Townsend.

Townsend will become the company's chief operating officer on Dec. 1, said Focus Media President and CEO Josh Sommers.

"He brings a world of experience to our firm, and he's going to be able to open a lot of doors," Sommers said.

For the past few years, Sommers has redirected his firm's focus away from politics and onto building a portfolio of corporate clients such as Real Estate Solutions, Walden Savings Bank and Monticello Gaming & Raceway.

Firm taking on national clients

Townsend, a Cornwall-on-Hudson resident who owns the political strategy firm The Townsend Group, helped engineer major campaign victories for Republicans. He's credited with helping Patrick Buchanan win the New Hampshire presidential primary.

Sommers said Townsend's political savvy will translate well as the firm takes on larger, national clients.

"There is a methodology to political work" that will translate well to corporate clients, Townsend said. "You start with a certain market share, and your job at the get-go is to secure your base and then invade the base and turf of the other candidate."

Townsend said the economic downturn means corporate America will see "a tremendous period of upheaval," with many weaker companies not surviving. He added that companies that don't advertise to protect their market share might not survive the downturn.

Focus Media is opening an office in Goshen. Townsend will oversee business operations at that office and its existing office in Monticello. The firm employs eight people, up from three less than two years ago.

With the exception of one outstanding commitment, Focus Media will no longer accept political clients. Townsend said he will operate his strategy firm separately from Focus Media.



For the first time in almost 8 years, we are going to have a President and an administration that we can be proud of!!!!

Now the fight for Hillary's Senate seat begins...I'm pulling for Suozzi but it's a long shot. Smart money says Cuomo or Gillibrand.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Bob Porter Elected Dem Boss in Ulster

Former Kingston Alderman and Ulster resident Bob Porter was elected unanimously to serve as the new chair of the town of Ulster Democratic Committee. Mike Berardi, who was also nominated, declined to run saying that Bob Porter was a person that had the skills and ability to do the job effectively.

Mr. Porter's first order of business was to schedule a holiday party at the Reservoir Inn, to start fundraising for town board races that will take place next year.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Elliott Auerbach has taken the lead in the race for Ulster County Comptroller. Elliott is leading Quigley by 74 votes with 5 districts left to be counted. Keep thinking positive my friends, the worm has turned!!

Monday, November 24, 2008


167 votes separate Elliott Auerbach from becoming Ulster County's first Comptroller. Good thoughts and optimism are desperately needed my friends!!

MONDAY 11.24.08

We started the day behind by 366

Today narrowed the gap as we continue to open up both absentee and affidavit ballots.


Here is what helped us today:

Town of Rochester +62

Town of Rosendale +47

Town of Shandaken +48

Remainder of City of Kingston +33

First 4 Districts in Saugerties +8

Here is what we have left:

321 Shawangunk

394 Woodstock

500 Saugerties

200+ Set aside and objected to ballots


First, I offer my early congrats on Hillary Clinton becoming our Secretary of State, it could not go to a better more qualified person. As you know I supported Hillary Clinton for President and I think she will be great as our top Diplomat.

Someone else I supported in early 2006 was a guy named Tom Suozzi who was running for Governor in a primary against Eliot Spitzer. I supported Tom early on and I switched to Spitzer because I met Governor Spitzer and he was clearly the guy for the job.

While I don't regret my support for the former Governor, I think NY would be in better shape in if in 06 we had elected Tom Suozzi, a guy that reformed Nassau County and has fought hard against corruption on every level and someone that has been a leader in fighting for property tax reform in this state.

We need a guy like Tom Suozzi fighting for us in the Senate, a voice that will not be silenced, a leader and someone that will be an advocate for NY, like Senator Clinton has been.

I hope that Governor Patterson sends Tom Suozzi to Washington, I don't think any of us will be disappointed.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Stevens Out, Quigley Next

Today Senator Ted Stevens lost his bid for reelection to his Democratic challenger after all the absentee ballots where counted.... One down, one to go.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Bruhn for GOP Boss

While we wait for the results of the Auerbach campaign, I guess we can deal with some local issues and one of them is the new leadership in the Kingston Republican Committee.

It seems that Mario Catalano has given the word that it is time for Jean Jacobs to go as Republican Chair and he has the votes to get rid of her when they reorganize next month. The question is who will take over the top spot? Tony Sinagra (yawn) and Rich Cahill (yawn) have been mentioned as possible people to take over.

I like Tony but his time has come and gone, if the Republicans want real leadership and a shot at taking back the council next year they must restore integrity to the committee, Micheal Bruhn Jr., is the guy that can do that.

Now as a Democrat I am hoping that Jacobs stays on as long as possible but as an independent observer, Mike Bruhn Jr., is the way to go if the GOP wants to start winning elections.

Paper Breaking For Auerbach

The absentee ballots are breaking steadily for Comptroller candidate Elliott Auerbach in his bid to become Ulster's first Comptroller.

While not much was accomplished on Friday due to the Skartados/Kirwin race, we should have a good idea on who won this election on Tuesday.

The good news is Auerbach is breaking ahead in areas like Marlboro and other Republican strong holds where he did not do particularly well on the machines.

I think this goes to the theory that these votes were cast before the Quigley media wave of lies and deception hit. If Auerbach does well in Kingston and holds on to New Paltz, Woodstock and Rosendale, the race will go his way.

More details as they become available.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Two Reasons Why Auerbach Should Win


Elliott Auerbach is looking better everyday at becoming Ulster County's first Comptroller and I am cautiously optimistic that he will pull it off.

First, Jim Quigley spent $17 per vote compared to the .76 per vote that Auerbach spent, the fact that this race is close tells you something.

Right now Quigley leads with 550 votes (Auerbach gained 28 during the re canvas) and the more than 4200 absentee ballots will begin to be counted next Wednesday. With a strong Democratic trend, Elliott looks to be in good shape, as long as Dems voted down the line and not just for President.

No matter what it will be close but keep in mind a few things :

1.) Most of the people voted by absentee weeks ago, before the huge Quigley media wave hit

2.) 2:1 more Dems requested absentees than Republicans

3.) Democrats targeted all absentee voters early on

But, who knows anything is possible and Quigley could very well win.


I ran into Mr.Quigley the morning after the election at a local establishment and I went to shake his hand and he said " stay the "f" away from me", Quigley just showed all the millions of dollars he has couldn't buy him class.

It's funny my relationship with Mr. Quigley had always been cordial up until that point and he even called me a few days before the election to tell me one of Elliott's big signs were knocked down and he gave me the location to fix it.

After I thanked him, I said to him, there are a lot of bad Dems and Republicans out there and people that get involved for the wrong reasons but whatever the result of this election I want you to know, Auerbach is one of the good ones. And, that's how it ended.

And, I meant that, the election has already been decided we will know the result soon enough but whatever the outcome Elliott Auerbach is a stand up guy that put his principals and integrity above everything else.

Elliott is the only candidate that ran countywide that never went negative, not once! Even when his opponent would put out a mailer full of lies and distortion, he would say, I'll let my Integrity guide me and I always respected that and it's something that Elliott taught me that stuck with me and I am proud of him for it.

Which is why I am confident that after every vote is counted the people of Ulster County will have spoken that they want a Comptroller with integrity and morals, and you can't walk into Ulster County and buy an election. After every vote is counted, my good friend Elliott Auerbach will be Ulster County's first Comptroller.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

A message from Elliott Auerbach

How great was it to lick the nectar of victory off of our lips as we celebrated Democratic successes both nationally and locally. The efforts by each and every one of you were remarkable and the HUGE turnout reflected that.

Let me share with you a brief update as to where we are with the Comptroller’s race so that you can pass this along to all who have a stake in our successes.

At the end of the evening I was trailing by 585 “unofficial” votes. Here is how things broke down:
As a Democrat I beat him by 4180 votes (33047 to 28867)
He gained that back + 10 on the Independence line by getting 4190
He then took 3564 on the Conservative line
I took 2989 on the Working Families line

Yesterday the Board of Elections began reviewing the tally (let’s call it a recount for lack of better words) to ensure that the numbers that were reported match the actual tally.

Once that is done and confirmed we may have a slight deviation to the spread.

After that, the fun begins.

To date, there are 4430 absentee ballots that have yet to be counted out of 6165. Ballots can come in as late as November 12th so there should be even more.

41% of those absentee ballot requests are from Dems (2512 out of 6165)
28% from NO PARTY (1705 of 6165)
26% are from Republicans (1604 of 6165)
3% from Independence (206 of 6165)
1.5% from Conservative
The remainder from WFP (11) Green (30) Libertarian (2)

The BOE will begin counting the absentee ballots on November 14th

IN ADDITION there are a number of people who voted by affidavit. I don’t have a handle on the exact amount but it could be close to 700

Any or all of these votes will be scrutinized by legal teams representing both candidates. This will be a long and arduous process that could take three weeks…..STAY TUNED!

The good news is we are in the race!!!!!!

Thanks for everything.



President Barack Obama....never thought it would happen. What a great day to be a Democrat and an American.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Hein Wins, Comptroller Race too Close to Call

Full details and analysis later today. The blog will continue until the conclusion of the Ulster County Comptroller race...GO AUERBACH!!!!!

Monday, November 03, 2008


It's very important that we all go out and exercise our right to vote this election cycle. It's an historic election both nationally and locally. I want to thank all the candidates that stuck their neck out and decided to run for public office, I think at the end of the day the benefits are greater than the bitter partisan fighting that takes place each year.