The City of Troy, New York, "Where Henry Hudson Turned Around."

Friday, November 11, 2005


On Tuesday, the New York State Republican Party passed quietly in its sleep after a long illness. It left no survivors.

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Too dramatic? We thought so. Accurate? Probably not. Party obituaries are nothing new. The GOP was dead after FDR's landslide victory in '32. It was dead after the Goldwater debacle. The Democratic Party has died an equal number of times.

That said, the GOP got spanked hard last night (and unlike Jimmy Swaggart, they didn't enjoy it), all over New York State. Democrats now control Nassau and Suffolk County, areas traditionally Republican. In Buffalo, Saratoga County, Schenectady and Ulster County, Democrats swept into office.

On a statewide level, things look just as bleak. After the heady days of Bill Powers, the GOP is saddled with Chairman Minarik. Minarik makes Lou Costello look competent. Pirro is off to a abysmal start in her futile attempt to defeat Clinton in next years Senate race. Spitzer is poised to demolish any Republican challenger, even the import from Massachusetts and Cuomo may be our next Attorney General. Like or hate those names (Clinton, Spitzer, Cuomo) that is a formidable ticket.

The GOP has not been a powerhouse for some time but they had been able to field candidates acceptable to many New Yorkers and win despite a 3-1 enrollment disadvantage. Last night, Michael Bloomberg was the only GOP star (and in terms of ideology he's to the left of Clinton) to shine.

By this time next year, the GOP will be on life support and that's too bad. We need balance in our government, at all levels. Do we want to see a great Democratic showing next year? Of course. Do we want to see the GOP all but disappear? No! The minority party must be healthy enough to keep an eye on those in power. We need some balance in our politics or those in power forget who their employers are.

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