PolitiFAIL 2010 Sweet Sixteen, Thompson vs. Stachowski

29 Mar

Antoine Thompson

Antoine Thompson is a man from WNY who serves in the State Senate. He is a member of Grassroots. He is being groomed to be the next Mayor of Buffalo. He used to be on the Common Council.

He embodies the general rule that merit and knowledge are not necessary components to electoral success in WNY. His ascension to the senate was marred by/the catalyst for the recent, omnipresent rift between City Hall and ECDC. Thompson took Byron Brown’s seat, which was kept warm for a few months by Marc Coppola. Brown was pissed at Lenihan because he felt slighted because he couldn’t hand-pick his successor (because obviously that’s how it works in a Democracy). Lenihan essentially said, tough shit; Masiello and Griffin didn’t get to choose their successors, either.

Thompson first gained notoriety in the senate for giving an impassioned speech in opposition to a bill that he had co-sponsored.

Then he couldn’t make up his mind whether he was going to raise money for convicted slasher Hiram Monserrate’s legal defense, or condemn his slashing ways.

He fumfers. His staff probably just got through violating ethics laws by soliciting food donations from local restaurants so they’d have a nice spread last week for a St. Joseph’s Day Table. The highlight was a cheesy cake bearing Thompson’s likeness on it – those slices were not cut.

Antoine Thompson is a guy who hardly deserves to cultivate a cult of personality. Especially when money he pledges to constituent groups doesn’t get delivered, and he goes on alleged trade junkets to posh Jamaican resorts. Wink-wink, nudge-nudge.

When he attempts to act as an erudite gentleman legislator, this happens:

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He next gained notoriety when his staff made shit up out of whole cloth.

Antoine Thompson: empty vessel or shrewd political player? You … make the call.

Bill Stachowski

It would be easy to say you could literally just copy everything I write today about Maziarz and Volker and just cut it right here. Stachowski has been in the State Senate since 1981, for God’s sake. Before that, he got on-the-job training in pointless parliamentarianism and faily fecklessness in the unnecessary Erie County Legislature.

Stachowski is most well-known for almost losing his re-election race in 2008 to a lump of Play-Doh® masquerading as a former detective. Weirder still, Delano wouldn’t debate Stach or even talk to the press. When the Democratic grassroots got their asses in big-time gear to get Stach re-elected, they pointed out that he would be up for a key Senate committee chairmanship once the Dems took the Senate.

Instead, it went to Carl Kruger, a Queens Democrat and reputed asshole who is aligned with Pedro Espada. Yet, when it came time to end the Senate stalemate, Stachowski and the rest of the Senate Democrats embraced Espada and Monserrate back into the fold. (None of this should be interpreted to imply that Delano would have been a better choice. My God, what a disaster that would have been).

Writing about New York State government is not unlike writing about the mafia.  Everyone’s unctuous, everyone’s in it for the money, and everyone’s up to some criminal enterprise or another.

Ultimately, Stachowski was one of the handful of state Senate Democrats who refused to vote to allow gay couples’ relationships be legally recognized by the state.

It might be great for Stachowski to vote that way because he counts Catholic, conservative Democrats among his constituents, but it also results in scenes like this:

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Bill Stachowski ran on one thing last time around: more clout and better representation for WNY once he went back to Albany and the Democrats took the Senate. What resulted was chaos, and Stachowski failed at everything.

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3 Responses to “PolitiFAIL 2010 Sweet Sixteen, Thompson vs. Stachowski”

  1. Robert Harding March 29, 2010 at 9:03 am #

    It is tough to vote AGAINST either man. They both come with their flaws (and shall we say, FAILings), but I think there is one man who edges out the other by a nose.

    Antoine Thompson.

    I first met Sen. Thompson at an event three or four years ago at an area ice rink where Mike Robitaille was also appearing. Thompson and I talked for a few minutes, comparing stories on the experience of having braces. (He had braces at the time and I was on to my retainer.) We also talked Albany, but talking about Albany with someone who is paid to “talk good” about Albany isn’t much of a discussion.

    Over the last few years, I saw Thompson as an OK senator. He wasn’t someone who stood out, yet he wasn’t someone who was one of the worst. Times have changed. Between “Cakegate,” his mysterious trip to Jamaica and the vote on Monserrate, he has failed over and over again.

    Stachowski is a different story. Some of the things that happened to Stachowski, namely the Finance Committee chair not going to him, were out of his control. His biggest FAILing is his time in Albany (30 years) and the fact that he has grown stale. His vote against marriage equality is a negative for sure.

    Thompson is bad news. He needs to go, but probably won’t. At least with Stachowski, there is a chance for change. With Thompson, that chance is very minimal (at best).

  2. Mike March 29, 2010 at 10:27 am #

    Antoine Thompson…isn’t he the bonehead that wanted to put a roof over RT.33?

  3. JD1 March 29, 2010 at 5:03 pm #

    PLEEZ…BUFFALO CANT handle another Brown wannabe…This guy is dumb as a box of rox and has no business being on the public payroll…this caliber of politician is why NY State is circling the drain now. This guy would starve ..in private industry!

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