District Attorney Joel Abelove announced: "We have checked the voter registration cards and Mr. Everett is not a registered Republican. Therefore, I have the authority to prosecute this matter."
Why is it always people of color with the voter fraud? First John Brown, now Ernest Everett.
Its too bad he has been charged and it will be too bad if he did it. He seems like a fine young man and it is such a waste if he stooped to crime. Especially this. Frankly, it's just not a cool crime. Bank robbery with a daring get-away; a DB Cooper-style sky-jacking, where he parachutes out the back of the plane into a cold, dark night and then....he's gone. How does one explain this crime in prison:
Cell Mate: Watcha' in for?
CM: I said, what you in for?
CM: What the...
CM: What you say you mumblin' motherf$#&*r?
EE: Uhm, filing a false instrument! That's right, how you like me now!
CM: Son of a ....
EE: No! Wait..wait! Guard! Guard!
As always, the vultures are circling. And who is the first to deny Everett the presumption of innocence, the presumption we'd all like? You got it. Republican Jim Gordon. No, wait a minute. We got that wrong. It's Patrick Madden, the Democratic...no. Wrong again.
The Working Families Party candidate for Mayor, Rodney Wiltshire had this to say just hours after the charges were brought:
I'm saddened, but not surprised, to read with the rest of my fellow Trojans how desperate Tom Wade and the Democratic machine are to hold on to power. Troy doesn't need the embarrassment of yet more felony voter fraud. It's time we move beyond this, as myself and my supporters and voters have been saying.
Voters were deprived of a true primary when a candidate who had clearly submitted fraudulent signatures was allowed to remain on the ballot.* Now, sadly, rather than simply being off the ballot, a young person with a promising future caught up in this machine has a warrant out for his arrest.
Elections have real consequences, and Trojans are sick and tired of theirs being rigged. The BOE owes voters an honest explanation of why, after being presented with hundreds of incorrect ballot signatures, many obviously fraudulent, they refused to do their job and enforce the rules.**
The Madden/Everett campaign have been explicit in their mutual support, and its obvious that Madden is a 'Wade Democrat.'*** Tom Wade himself said that Madden never would have won the election without Ernest.****
The choice on November 3rd is now crystal clear.***** It's time to end crony politics once and for all so we can focus on the very real challenges our city faces. My campaign has always put honesty, hard work and integrity****** above all and If elected my administration will be ethical, transparent and work for a better Troy for all of us.
That is the Working Families Party candidate. The party of social and criminal justice, criminal and judicial reform. The party that fights to strengthen the rights of the accused.
We get pissed at Rodney because there is a lot of promise there. It just hasn't been fulfilled at this time. He has tried and convicted Ernest Everett based on an allegation. He has implicated Patrick Madden and Tom Wade based on what? Mere hope? He stumbled over himself to deny Mr. Everett the presumption of innocence to try and score political points. It disappoints us because this tactic has the Tutunjian stink all over it. This is what Tutunjian and his thugs would do. Gordon (Jesus Christ, can't believe we said that) and Madden have treated this matter with respect and appear willing to let the criminal justice system kick in. Everett may be guilty. So be it. Maybe not. So be it.
God forbid anyone that reads this, Republican, Democrat or blank is charged with a crime or even non-criminal wrongdoing. Do we want the mayor issuing a statement that pre-judges us? Is that mature, thoughtful, responsible leadership? Damn, Rodney. Your not supposed to act like a twitterer (twitite? twitteronian?), a blogger, Record reporter or just an average Joe.******* You have a responsibility to treat the rights of the accused and the criminal justice system with respect, not as political sport. You need to walk this back.
If you are accusing Patrick Madden of being an accomplice to a crime do it. Not in vague, wishy-washy political statements made on facebook. Hold a press conference, bring your proof, file a criminal complaint with the police. Right. Didn't think so. Just another politician.
That brings us to our next point. Gordon may be mayor because the Democratic vote will be split. We believe Gordon should not be mayor. We believe he would lose if he faced Madden or Wiltshire one-on-one. But, Madden can't drop out. The Democrats have to run someone on their line. A major party cannot sit the election out and hand things over to a minor party. They have to have people pulling the actual, Democratic lever (OK, fill out the Democratic bubble).
Rodney, you ran a great primary race. Well-organized and enthusiastic. There are problems with the system. They can be changed but you need a seat at the table to do that. If you stay in the race, Gordon will win and there won't be a table to sit at anymore.
As an aside, Everett's campaign handlers were out of Albany with links to the Brown family. Tom Wade did not run Everett's campaign. Tom Wade encouraged Everett to run for a council seat. Everett insisted on the mayoral race. Why wouldn't those who support Madden want Everett in the race? Do you think that Rodney wouldn't have loved it if a more establishment-type Democrat siphoned votes from Madden. Or is Rodney somehow entitled to face only one opponent in his races? Any other special rules we need to know about, Rodney? Tom Wade isn't perfect but he's not Keyser Soze. If he was, you would have lost by more than 50 votes.
* Wasn't your challenge to the petitions late? Didn't your campaign fuck-up
** The Commissioners are supposed to know Everett wasn't a witness to the signatures and then unilaterally toss him off the ballot? Either you don't know the rules or don't care about them.
*** Didn't you recently accuse Madden of being a closet Republican?
**** An obvious and true statement. Now you criticize Wade for being honest?
***** A vote for Wiltshire is a vote for Gordon
****** Until now
******* Sorry Joe.