Monday, June 29, 2009

Cahill Fundraiser Huge Success

Brian Cahill's fundraiser was a huge success, drawing close to 100 people including former Majority Leader of the NYS Senate Joe Bruno. I guess one Majority Leader supporting another.

It was fun to meet and talk with Bruno, I said to him, Mr. Majority Leader the entire Senate fell apart with in a year of you leaving and he said that it is something that worries him.

I also was very impresed with County Court candidate Debra Schneer, a very bright town Justice; who I think will make a great County Court Judge.

Just a note: Senator Bruno's attendance at the SkyTop last night was just a coincidence, he was not there for Brian's fundraiser.

Gilda Riccardi Puts Out Campaign Website You can also access the website by clicking on Gilda's picture on the side of the blog.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Williams Puts Out Campaign Website

Don Williams' Website click here

A Few Observations

Sorry the blog has not been updated as much, it's been a busy hectic week.


A Few Observations:

Sorry to see Kingston Truth, another local blog, shut down, I enjoyed reading the blog and it was one of the few "pro Blaber" blogs in Ulster County. Hope it makes a come back.

Gilda Riccardi, is out beating bushes, I had a great conversation with some people who got to meet her last week for the first time and they were very impressed with her. I am happy she is out there working and look forward to campaigning for her in the coming months.

Mike Madsen says he has been out getting signatures and getting a great response from voters. Keep up the good work, Mike! Jeanette Provanzano is also out working hard.....where is Frank Dart these days? We hear vacationing it up in Florida.

Dean Palen in some hot water in the last few days. After, him and his wife were escorted off the property last week, 31k in uncased checks dating back from 2000 were found in a safe behind his wife's desk. While it may not have been criminal, it certainly showed that Palen was incompetent. And, lets be honest people were sick of the Palen/Palen show going on at the UC Health Department for the last 20 years. Expect a thorough and detailed audit to come out of Comptroller Auerbach's office in the coming weeks.

Speaking of Palen, my friend and the Political Dean of Ulster Politics Hugh Reynolds, must be kicking himself for the column he wrote defending Palen and attacking Mike Hein for ousting him...if only he had waited a few days.......

Debrah Schneer, the Democratic nominee for County Court was appointed by Governor David Paterson to fill Judge Bruhn's seat a few days ago. With the mess going on in Albany (which ironically, sort of reminds me of the mess that went on at the UC Democratic convention) it is doubtful Schneer will get Senate approval to take her post any time soon.

Nina Postupack came out and publicly endorsed Jim Quigley to be the next Supervisor of the town of Ulster. I am a little surprised by this and it may have current Supervisor Nicky Woerner scratching his his support from the Spada crowd dwindling? Will he now do the right thing and support Gilda Riccardi for Clerk?

Comptroller Auerbach Always the Entertainer

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Here and There

Mike Madsen has decided to run for County Legislature instead of running a Ward 9 primary. I asked him to reconsider but he is all about it and that's democracy. Obviously, I am supporting him and hope he wins the primary. I think it's also important that Dems in that district pull down the lever for Jeanette Provanzano as well.

As for Ward 9, I am supporting the highly qualified Hayes Clement to be Mike's successor. Hayes has what it takes and will be the next Alderman of Ward nine.

While I was bitter, and ignored covering the county court Judge race after the convention, I would like to Congratulate Debra Schneer on her victory at last weeks convention. Our chairman really did a poor job throughout the county court selection process and Terry Rosenbloom should be ashamed of herself and expect a primary in her next bid for office.(apparently, I'm still bitter) Nonetheless Ms. Schneer is the Dem nominee and I congratulate her.

Also congratulations to Judge Katz, who was the Governor's pick and would of been a great County Court Judge. Judge Katz has decided not to primary and do what is best for the party like a true Democrat. I repect that but have a feeling with Katz out of the race, the group Dems for Don Williams will keep growing.

Town of Ulster Dems had a big pick up with Lew Kirshner running for town justice but it was short lived and his departure from the race overshadowed the entire Dem ticket. It's going to be an uphill battle for Dems in the town of Ulster.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


Former County Treasurer Lew Kirshner was nominated today to run for Town Justice in the town of Ulster.
This will be a race to watch, Sue Kesick has proven to be a strong candidate by beating her former boss to win the Judgeship but Lew Kirshner is an establishment all by himself.

Also nominated: Nick Worener for Supervisor, Craig Artist and Rocky Secreto for town board.

The GOP convention will take place next week with JIM QUIGLEY runnin for Supervisor, John Morrow and Chris Hedrick for town board

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Gilda Riccardi

One positive thing that came out of tonight's convention was the unanimous nomination of our next county clerk Gilda Riccardi.

Pictured above is Gilda with my other favorite county official, Ulster
Comptroller Elliott Auerbach!

Monday, June 08, 2009

Madsen Loses Dem Nod, Vowes Primary

The good news about Halwick winning the Democratic nomination tonight is it will give me an excuse to spend a lot of time in Kingston this summer working to get my boy Mike Madsen elected Alderman of the 9th ward. Madsen who has the Independence line will primary for the Democratic line and I am confident that he will be successful in a Democratic primary this September. I congratulate Mr. Halwick of getting party insiders to support his candidacy but now lets let the people of Ward 9 decide! Majority Leader Bill Reynolds also vowed to support Alderman Madsen in his reelection bid!

I also would like to congratulate Jen Fuentas, a registered member of the Working Families Party, who received the Democratic endorsement to run in Ward 5. It looks like we will have a registered member of the WFP serving on the council for the first time in Kingston's history and we need to work hard to elect her.

Tom Hoffay also won handily over John Hoyt by a 6-1 margin!!!! Way to go Tom!


Jonathan Katz endorsed by the Working Families Party

ALERT: Jonathan Katz endorsed by the Working Families Party

Blaber News encourages all Committee People to support Jonathan Katz at the Democratic Convention tonight.

Two Democrats join Republicans to topple Smith as Senate leader Democrat Espada elected Senate president

Times Union, Albany, NY
By JAMES M. ODATO, Capitol bureau
Click byline for more stories by writer.
Last updated: 4:54 p.m., Monday, June 8, 2009

ALBANY -- In a dramatic late afternoon overthrow of the Senate leadership, Senate Republicans joined by two dissident Democrats took control of the upper chamber and installed Sen. Pedro Espada as president.

The Bronx lawmaker, who returned to Albany in January after a hiatus, said he is a voice for reform Democrats and that more reformers will be joining his lead. He and Sen. Hiram Monserrate of Queens joined the 30 Senate Republicans to remove all leadership put into place at the start of year when Sen. Malcolm Smith became the majority leader.

Led by an aggressive push by Sen. Thomas Libous, R-Binghamton, Republicans forced a resolution that resulted in the vote of Espada as temporary president for the rest of this year and of Sen. Dean Skelos, R-Rockville Centre as the vice president.

The Capitol was turned upside down by the move which ends the Democrats six-month tenure as leaders of the Senate.

"I am a Democrat and I am in charge," said Espada who said he could not sit tight and allow Smith to lead the Senate. "We have been in a quagmire since Jan 7."

The plot to overthrow Smith was supported by Rochester billionaire Thomas Golisano, a three-time gubernatorial candidate and backer of several Senate candidates.

Libous was able to install Sen. George Winner, R-Elmira, to oversee the proceedings. He replaced Sen. Neil Breslin, D-Bethlehem, who had been officiating the Senate when Libous raised his surprise leadership resolution. Breslin was taken aback and had a hard time responding to the hand vote of 32 senators calling for a leadership change.

Eventually, Breslin recognized the vote and left with lawyer Keith St. John so that Republican lawyer Jack Casey and Winner could take the stage. After Espada and Skelos were sworn in, Libous won another resolution to restructure the powerful Rules Committee and cancel all chairmanships and committee appointments.

"Legally, we're absolutely assured," Espada said. "This is about getting a government that works."

Clearly shaken, Democrats left the chamber after the leadership vote, although they first attempted to adjourn. That vote was rejected by Republicans and Espada's allies. As the new leadership began their actions, the lights were turned off in the chamber. They were put back on five minutes later.

Republican aides who had been shoved into the minority seemed buoyed by the turn of events as Democrats seemed unsure of what to do next.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Tomorrow We Make History

ALERT: Jonathan Katz endorsed by the Working Families Party

Tomorrow is the night of Gilda Riccardi, an experienced professional, former Prosecutor and mother making he announcement in front of 300 plus Democrats that she will step up to the plate and be a candidate for Ulster County Clerk.

We as Democrats should be proud that someone of Ms.Riccardi's caliber has stepped up to run and take back the office of the Ulster County Clerk for the first time in our County's history.

Ms. Riccardi was well received at the Independence fundraiser last week, I have heard from both Democrats and Republicans that Gilda was very impressive and said no doubt that her opponent looked nervous.

While I have a commitment in NYC that will prevent me from attending my party's convention, I will be there in spirit, and thanks to Ms.Riccardi, I am once again proud to be an Ulster County Democrat!

Of course as talked about previously, we will be nominating a candidate for Ulster County Clerk, I STRONGLY SUPPORT Jonathan Katz, to be our party's nominee and am happy that he has already received the support of the Working Families Party, could another third party endorsement follow for Justice Katz?!?!

There should not be much surprises in the county leg races, hopefully by the end of tomorrow night, I will be able to call and congratulate my friend, County Legislator elect Terry Bernardo. The other race to watch is to see if Tracy Bartels makes a come back and does Noonan get the Dem line? District 8 could prove interesting.


Blaber News Supports

Ward 2 Tom Hoffay

Ward 3 Charlie Landi

Ward 4.Shirley Whitlock

Ward 5 Jen Fuentas

Ward 6. Eliza Ball

Ward 7 my other mentor William P. Reynolds :)

Ward 8 Robert Senor

Ward 9 Mike Madsen

Note: had a nice e-mail exchange with Hayes Clement, one of the candidates running and I think his intentions are genuine. I feel that he has a bright future in public service.

This Just In : Jon Katz Gets WFP Nod

Congratulations to Jonathan Katz who has received the endorsement of the Working Families Party!!!

Why we need Katz

I just got off the phone with Independence Chair Len Bernardo who was marching in the New Paltz pride parade with our next county court Judge Jonathan Katz.

The significance in this is we finally have a clear choice to make electing Mr.Williams and his philosophize or Judge Katz.

We know where both of them stand on the issue of marriage equality, Mr. Williams is against it and threatened to prosecute Mayor West for giving same sex couples the equal rights that they deserve. We all know Justice Katz was also a part of that debate as a New Paltz town Judge, he stood on the right side of the issue.

Ulster County has been run by Republican jurists with their simple minded thinking for too long. We have an opertunity to elect a true Progressive Judge to the bench.

Obviously, marriage equality is an important issue but there are many others such as electing a Judge that believes in strong alternative to incarceration programs for non violent offenders, getting individuals with substance abuse problems the treatment they need, not locking them up for three years so they come out full blooded criminals.

I am not advocating for a Judge to legislate from the bench or to be 'weak on crume' as the Conservatives will try to use as a scare tactic. I am simply saying the county Judge has discretion on sentencing and we need to someone that is willing to use it.

Judge Katz will be a breath of fresh air to the criminal justice system here in Ulster County and will help bring us into the 21st century.

Friday, June 05, 2009

City Dems Once Again Eat Thier Own

In 2007 we were all but assured a victory when Dems nominated Jonathan Sennett to be our DA nominee but due to infighting and a three way race we all know what happened.

As they say if you don't learn from history you are doomed to repeat it and it looks like the same people that didn't get it in 07 don't get it in 09.

It was reported in the Kingston Times that John Hoyt and Debbie Brown both candidates nominated by the GOP party are looking to take out incumbent Dems, with the help of certain members of the city committee.

Ed Palifino, the vice chair of the Dem committee actually is publicly telling people he will nominate Hoyt over incumbant Tom Hoffay. Knowing full well that Hoyt will be cross endorsed..... WTF?!?!

Tom Hoffay is a life long Democrat, a former chairman of the County party who just retired after years of service to former Gov and former AG Eliot Spitzer. Not to mention a very effective Alderman, its disgraceful.

Maybe Ed Palidino, a former Republican, is back working for the other side, either way he should resign as Vice Chair of the committee, no way he can continue to serve effectively.

The GOP did not exactly put out a strong ticket on Monday, if we are united we can make 8-1 or 9-0 again.

We need to nominate and support the current caucus of Tom Hoffay, Charles Landi, Shirley Whitlock, Bill Reynolds and Robert Senor.

As well as support newcomers Jen Fuentas in 5 who will be a strong voice as a mother and active member of her community; and Eliza Ball in ward 6 who also is extremely qualified and active in her community.

In the words of my mentor Jon Sennett at the da pre convention debate in rosendale, cuz the words still ring true today : Lets not blow this opertunity as Democrats, lets out our best foot forward and bring forth a candidate(s) that's going to win in November.

Now is the time, my friends to put all of our differences aside and unite as a party. If we do that we will take back the offices of the county court and clerk respectively for the first time in living memory, and strengthen our majority on the county. And city legislature.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009



Republicans back former DA Don Williams to be their candidate for County Court. Mr. Williams is a formidable opponent and should not be taken lightly by Democrats. Analysis on this race, the city council picks and the legislature to come later tonight!


City GOP Endorsed Candidates

Ward 1 - Andi Turco Levin ----Teetsel backs out

Ward 2 Blank

Ward 3 blank

Ward 4 Jeanne Edwards

Ward 5 Rich Cahill Sr.

Ward 6 Ron Pollocco

Ward 7 Mike Gill

Ward 8 Todd Langon

Ward 9 Debbie Brown

County Leg---results still coming in

District 1
Terry Bernardo top vote getter will be one of the GOP candidates, TJ Briggs, Mary Sheeley and Joe Steckler also won the GOP line

District 2 James Monsorut

District 5 James Maloney and Fred Wadnola

District 13 Mark Angolio and Marvin Schilmerhorn