Buffalo News Endorsements So Far [UPDATED]

29 Oct

President:

Barack Obama (D) (article here)

If Americans want a future where our leaders respond to challenges with judgment and principle, rather than panic and rashness, they will elect Barack Obama president. We recommend they do so.

Our preference for Obama is not based only on matters of character, intelligence and calm. It also flows from his superior positions on such basic issues as war and peace, energy and environment, the economy and taxation, health care and justice.

Fundamentally, Obama does not want us to fear the future, the ever smaller, ever more complicated world, the problems we face and the choices we must make. He most certainly does not want us to be afraid of one another. And Obama does not even want us to be afraid of his rival candidate.

Congress:

NY-26: Alice Kryzan (D) (article here)

Kryzan is having no more of the Bush administration’s nonsense about the solution to every problem being another tax cut for the rich. And she resists the lure of cheap, and environmentally damaging, oil, turning instead to a new, green economy that will not only battle the trends toward climate change but also promise economic benefits to previously troubled areas such as Buffalo and the Great Lakes.

NY-27: Brian Higgins (D)

Higgins is vitally important on those local needs, and he is on the right side of the big issues. He is tired of the United States being played by all sides in the Iraq conflict and upset by what the conduct of the war on terror has done to American values. He favors reasonable regulation for the shattered financial markets and will not be a vote to continue the ruinous Bush tax cuts.

NY-28: Louise Slaughter (D)

As chairman of the powerful House Rules Committee, she is in a good spot to see to the needs of all of Western New York. But, more than that, her position on the important issues facing the nation recommend her to the voters.

Slaughter is a strong voice for facing the threat of climate change through limits on greenhouse emissions, alternative energy sources and efficient autos and power plants. She supports a carefully managed withdrawal from Iraq and a restoration of the constitutional balances that have been upset by the Bush administration’s conduct of the war on terror. She seeks an end to the Bush tax code, which she rightly labels as a blatant redistribution of wealth — from the poor to the rich.

NY-29: Eric Massa (D)

Massa, a Democrat from Corning, favors a tax code that reserves its breaks for those who need them the most, has detailed ideas for a new regulatory system for the financial industry and regrets deeply the damage that has been done to the American military, American security, the American Constitution and American prestige by the misbegotten war in Iraq.

The News really honed in on the Bush-era’s tax cuts for the rich, and how that has practically become the Republican Party’s answer to everything.

State Assembly
A-138: Francine DelMonte (D)

The incumbent’s passion for her district and knowledge of issues tilts our endorsement toward her in a difficult decision.

A-143: Dennis H. Gabryszak (D)

The incumbent is finishing his first term. He has the more complete view of the district’s needs, and has a more realistic view of the need to cut spending and redistricting reform.

A-144: Sam Hoyt (D)

The incumbent, despite this year’s ethical issues, is plainly the better choice. Although he believes taxes will have to rise, he favors creative cost-saving measures and cuts in Medicaid. His opponent, Shelia A. Ferrentino, is a real estate agent with some good ideas, but no political experience.

A-145: Mark J. Schroeder (D)

The incumbent has repeatedly proved his value to his district. He is its enthusiastic advocate and a Democrat willing to confront the chamber’s leadership.

A-146: Jack Quinn (R)

A close call, but the two-term incumbent deserves re-election, partly because the Assembly can’t afford to lose able Republican members. Although opponent Leonard Kowalski is as right on many issues, Quinn’s background and knowledge of the district give him the edge.

A-147: Philip A. Jones (D)

The Democratic challenger to incumbent Daniel J. Burling is passionate about the district and has the
right approach to most of the issues. While Burling’s decision not to meet with the editorial board deprived us of a chance to sound him out, we are impressed by Jones’ enthusiasm.

A-148th: James P. Hayes (R)

The Republican incumbent is a senior member of the minority conference, and has the right approach on the issues facing New York. His challenger, retired lawyer Jerome Schad, is an able man, but doesn’t make the case of ousting an important Republican assemblyman.

Running unopposed (or essentially unopposed) are Hawley A-139, Peoples A-141, Parment A-150, Schimminger A-140, Corwin A-142.

State Senate

SD-58: William T. Stachowski (D)

For years, William T. Stachowski has been a senator with a public profile that verged on invisibility. A Democrat in the Republicancontrolled Senate, Stachowski had what appeared to be a safe seat and not a lot to do in a Legislature that muzzles members of the minority party…

…Although he has led in the polls, Delano is coasting only on name recognition and his reputation as the cop who helped free Anthony Capozzi from 25 years of wrongful imprisonment. He has said virtually nothing substantive about what he would seek to accomplish as a state senator, and has avoided discussion of issues. Voters deserve better.

SD-59: Dale M. Volker (R)

This is as close a call as we faced this year. Republican Volker is a senior member of the Senate, and while that hasn’t translated into a lot of benefit for the region, he is a stabilizing force for people who — like us — are concerned about Democrats controlling both legislative chambers.

Nevertheless, Democratic challenger Kathy Konst has clearer and stronger ideas about the needs of voters. She has shown herself to be a tough, independent member of the Erie County Legislature and would, no doubt, bring the same qualities to the Senate. In addition, Volker is often defensive about the Legislature’s obvious dysfunction.

What tilts us toward him is both the regional need for seniority if the Senate remains Republican and Konst’s inadequate response to charges that she voted both here and in Florida in 1998. She claims, plausibly enough, that she had no reason to vote twice, but records do suggest otherwise and her claim that she did not know her husband had declared bankruptcy in Florida in 2003 is troubling.

(I find troubling the fact that the News would endorse the candidate who so clearly loses on the merits, by their own admission. If Konst “has clearer and stronger ideas about the needs of voters” and is a “tough, independent member of the [county leg]” then that would seem to me to be a compelling reason to give her the endorsement over the 36-year incumbent).

SD-61: Michael H. Ranzenhofer (R)

Erie County Legislator Michael H. Ranzenhofer is the easy endorsement in this race to succeed the retiring Mary Lou Rath. Republican Ranzenhofer is well informed about the issues and understands the challenges facing residents of the nation’s highest-taxed state.

The Democrat in this race is boxer-turned-politician Joe Mesi, an instantly likable man who, despite his best efforts and good coaching, is out of his element at this point in his political development.

SD-62: George D. Maziarz (R)

George D. Maziarz has represented this district ably since 1995. He has creative ideas for cutting spending over the long term, including eliminating the State Liquor Authority and pushing school districts to consolidate. He opposes tax increases to fill next year’s cavernous budget gap.

SD-60: Antoine Thompson (D) is unopposed.

16 Responses to “Buffalo News Endorsements So Far [UPDATED]”

  1. Prodigal Son October 27, 2008 at 11:23 am #

    Will the News endorse a single Republican candidate? (a judge that’s also running on the Dem line doesn’t count)

    I wait in breathless anticipation for the answer.

  2. The Humanist October 27, 2008 at 1:51 pm #

    That’s a laugh…..Republicans who don’t miss an opportunity to bash and belittle the News as some elitist liberal rag now bitch that they can’t get a single endorsement. Pacifiers are on aisle 5.

    Perhaps it’s because Republicans at every level, from federal on down have accomplished what was thought to be a physical impossibility.

    They both blow and suck.

  3. Ward October 27, 2008 at 3:37 pm #

    You will know they’ve hit Hackerama rock bottom when they endorse Sam “What’s your sign, Baby?” Hoyt–who is pretty much running against his own zipper.

  4. mike October 27, 2008 at 4:19 pm #

    buffet used to give niagara unversity free papers to encourage reading, but now that Tommy G. is giving them 5 million he cut us off. See Hank is right.

  5. The Wizard October 27, 2008 at 4:53 pm #

    If someone is in college and they need a free newspaper to encourage reading, they should promptly drop out.

  6. Starbuck October 27, 2008 at 5:29 pm #

    T.H. – Who exactly is bitching? I’ve read and heard people mocking TBN about it, but that’s different from bitching.

    If I were a Repub candidate for anything around this area I wouldn’t seek TBN’s endorsement. Even for a Dem it’s pretty useless (as Pundit can confirm), and for a Republican when it happens it should be considered at least a little embarassing. Shouldn’t it be considered like a national Republican candidate being endorsed by the NY Times?

  7. Adam K. October 28, 2008 at 10:04 am #

    Slaughter and Higgins clearly deserves endorsement this year; Slaughter because her position in the House gives our area privileges, and Higgins because of the work he has done.

    Randy Kuhl held a shotgun to his wife’s head at a dinner party. Twice. He wasn’t joking around. He clearly deserves to go.

    The only race with merits to argue is 26. The News hasn’t endorsed a Dem for that seat as far back as Lexis Nexis goes. This year they did. Once in 10 elections – is that really that bad?

  8. Adam K. October 28, 2008 at 10:07 am #

    Prodigal Son – they endorsed Jim Hayes.

  9. pirate's code October 28, 2008 at 12:03 pm #

    @ Ward — “You will know they’ve hit Hackerama rock bottom when they endorse Sam “What’s your sign, Baby?” Hoyt–who is pretty much running against his own zipper.”

    Well, they did endorse Sam, with the following quote about his opponent — “Sheila A. Ferrentino…(has) some good ideas, but no political experience.”

    So, screwing with former interns for a decade or more trumps good ideas? Inheriting your seat from your late father, and doing little else, trumps good ideas? Backing new Assembly leadership then caving at the first growl from Shelly trumps new ideas?

    And just to show that their nonsensical approach is non partisan, almost as hilarous was the less-than-ringing endorsement of Jack Quinn, who should stay because that house “can’t afford to lose able Republican members.” WTF does that mean? Especially when they say his opponent “is as right on many issues” but Quinn has “background and knowledge of the district.” Huh?

    Buffalo News endorsements = Media FAIL

  10. Prodigal Son October 28, 2008 at 4:16 pm #

    Adam – you are right -they did endorse some R’s today . . . for the totally mind boggling reasons Pirate brought up. Endorse a Republican because the Assembly needs Republican members? Does the News feel its their job to decide the balance of each legislature, or endorse who they feel is best for the position?

    I was wrong about the default Dem endorsement. Turns out its a default Incombent/Dem endorsement. Check both those boxes, and you can’t lose (i.e. Sam Hoyt).

    How can an editorial page have the cognitive dissonance to both advocate reform in the NYS legislature, and endorse so many incumbents, including not endorsing Ferrentino because she has no political experience.

    The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again (electing incumbents) and expecting different results.

  11. The_other_mike October 29, 2008 at 9:12 am #

    I don’t trust the “news” that this paper puts out, why would I trust their judgement on selecting any of our candidates.

  12. Jim Ostrowski October 29, 2008 at 9:13 am #

    “Will the News endorse a single Republican candidate?”

    Yes, they endorsed one of the worst public officials in WNY history, stale Dale Volker.

  13. Ward October 29, 2008 at 5:21 pm #

    That Volker thing musta killed you, BP. But was it worse for you than Ranzenhofer in an “easy endorsement” over Baby “I’m for whoever and whatever coughs up more dough” Joe?

    Pirate — what’d I tell ya? Hoyt over “no recommendation” = Hack City.

    What was Einstein’s definition of “insanity”? Wonder if the Snooze expects better government this time around.

  14. Chris from OP October 29, 2008 at 8:26 pm #

    They endorsed Volker because he is a “stabilizing force?” Inertia? Ballast? This totally weak justification makes me almost “keel” over.

    I also don’t buy into the News’ claim that someone needs to adequately defend themselves from any crazy-ass smear that the Volkeristas toss at someone. You know I’m upset that Konst hasn’t adequately proven that she isn’t an alien from the planet Vloxnarg.

  15. Chris from OP October 29, 2008 at 10:30 pm #

    What’s this about Dale Volker “bringing balance to the force.” Is the New’s Chosen One, really Anakin “Darth Vader” Skywalker?

    Shrouded in mystery this endorsement is…

  16. Haterade aka John Burke October 31, 2008 at 10:35 am #

    What a fucking joke. That crappy rag endorses virtually every incumbent , yet whines about why this area is dying.

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