As everyone knows, former judge Henry Bauer is an At-Large candidate for Troy City Council. This set us to speculate about what role Bauer may play in the future.
First, Bauer is likely to win. He has run city-wide before, is likeable and is perceived by many ignorant people as the victim of a conspiracy. Also, and more importantly, he'll have the third-party lines. Lets face it, Republicans are not winning because they have better candidates or any new ideas, they win in Troy because the way in which the minor party lines are used undermines democracy.
Once the Democrats screwed themselves on the term-limits issue, they opened the door to years of GOP control of the city. Bad move that.
Now back to Bauer. If we were Harry we would not have wanted Bauer anywhere near this race. With due respect to Mayor Tutunjian, Bauer is smarter, a better public speaker, quicker on his feet and far more sophisticated than the people closest to Harry. If Bauer wins, he'll probably be City Council President. Bauer can choose one of two courses: become a GOP lackey or an independent force.
Our crystal ball tells us that the second course is more likely than the first. Bauer is an attorney and an ex-judge. Attorneys have egos and judges have even bigger egos. Bauer may have a tough time taking marching orders from the likes of Tutunjian.
If we're correct, Bauer will become a force within the party. He will come into the race and into office with a power base not entirely dependent upon the GOP machine. What does a smart, savvy, experienced man do a few years from now? Run for County Executive? Assembly? Senate? Bauer would have his pick of offices, leaving Harry the scraps.
This also has to be considered: it is very likely that our next governor will be Elliot Spitzer. When that happens, Bruno's own light begins to fade. It is one thing to share power with a Republican governor, quite another to deal with a Democratic governor and Assembly Speaker. Bruno will no longer get his people installed in those plum agency jobs. Also, Bruno is 76 years old and growing increasingly cranky. In fact, he acts as if he's beginning to lose a step or two. With Spitzer in, Bruno weakened, many Republicans will be scurrying for jobs when 2007 begins.
There is also something quite Mirchesque about the whole affair. Some speculate that Mirch has little confidence in Harry and wants Bauer around for backup. If Harry is in trouble, will Mirch push Bauer for mayor? Remember, Mirch still wants to suck off the public teat for a few more years. As for any loyalty to Tutunjian, whores do not have loyalties. And we all know that Mirch is the crack whore of political whores.
Our political galaxy is not large enough to support two stars. As Bauer ascends, Tutunjian becomes irrelevant. I wouldn't sell that body shop so soon, Harry.