Tea New York’s Candidates’ Night

14 Jun

On Saturday, Rus Thompson hosted Tea New York’s candidates’ night in Kenmore. The crowd of about 250 people heard from several candidates – many of them long-shots – for many local and statewide races. This was a crowd of Paladino loyalists at heart. Practically every single candidate pledged to do real reform for regular folks, lower taxes, free up guns, weaken Medicaid and other social programs, and other typical right-tea-party stuff. Here is the event’s kick-off, with Rus Thompson explaining who makes up “Tea New York“, and introducing Assemblyman Jack Quinn III, who is running for SD-58, and spoke without a hint of irony about how broken Albany is. He listed a laundry list of things that need to be changed in Albany, honing in on the easiest bogeyman – Medicaid. He didn’t explain exactly what he has done as a minority Assemblyman to effect those changes, or what he might do in an evenly split Senate. Tom Casey is a Democrat running in the Stachowski race, and made that very point – that Jack Quinn is part of the problem he claims to want to reform.

Joe Golombek was the other Democrat to speak at this event. He is running in a primary against Sam Hoyt in A-144 and pledged to be an independent voice in Albany, not unlike Mark Schroeder. He omitted any mention, however, of his ties to the capo di tutti capi of filth in New York politics, Steve Pigeon.


Here is a string of speeches, starting out with former Erie County Republican Party chairman Jim Domagalski, who is running for Dale Volker’s seat in SD-59, pledged to lower taxes, enact reforms, “close New York’s borders” and cut Medicaid, and expressed his faith in an odd way. Former Sheriff Pat Gallivan followed Domagalski, and he more touted his own past budget-cutting bona fides, and rebutted Domagalski’s claim that Gallivan’s job is a “no-show” appointment. Gallivan also called for openness and transparency in government personnel, contracts, and in political contributions. Subjectively, Gallivan was much more polished than Domagalski.


In the SD-60 race, Mark Grisanti is running as a Republican against Antoine Thompson. His speech didn’t make it to the Ustream save, but he has fantastic candidate hair, and came up with genuine ideas for bettering that district, such as turning the Niagara Falls Airport into an international air cargo hub.

Here, Ken Case gives a speech for his race for county court judge, touting his prosecutorial experience, which is odd since a judge shouldn’t have a predisposition for deciding cases.


Who, exactly, are the “special interests” everyone is fighting against? I heard a lot of anger in the room, made up almost completely of suburban Caucasian males, and I heard a tremendous amount of “cut this, cut that”. I heard policy proposals, most of which were predictable, but I heard nothing at all about how to get there. I heard nothing about the entrenched politics of Albany which are paradoxically united in their dysfunctional polarization. Republican Assemblymen like Jack Quinn can promise whatever they want, but they don’t have to ever deliver on any of it. He’ll get his member item money and dole out big checks and get re-elected. The Senate race is all about which party will gain or retain control of that chamber, because there’s more money being in the majority.

No one said they’d support any specific structural reforms to ensuring that Albany becomes a democratic (small d) representative institution again. Here’s a clue to everyone in that room, including the candidates: unless you make those changes, you can’t take a steamroller or a baseball bat or any other blunt instrument to the Albany party and get anything done. It’s just not set up that way. You are set up for silence, failure, and photo ops. That’s why to me, Cuomo’s proposed agenda is attractive while Paladino’s angry-violent-guy schtick is not.

Innovative ideas like those proposed by Grisanti were the exception rather than the rule at Saturday’s confab, and that’s a shame. You can’t reform substantive Albany policy without a path to get there. None of these attendees had that figured out yet. Jack Quinn the younger – who knows this all too well – could have, but failed, to raise that issue. He’s just asking for a promotion as thanks for doing nothing for the past several years.

Honorable mention goes to Jill Rowland, who gave a speech that was astonishing in its Michele Bachmann/Sarah Palin style of fumfering emptiness. She is running for Congress against Louise Slaughter. Some of her gems:

Our national pride is turning into an international apology“.

She wants government to get out of the way to help businesses and entrepreneurs, adding that communist China “has no capital gains tax“.

Rowland added that the “American dream is turning into an American nightmare” and that government “wants to control every aspect of our lives“. This is right out of the Ostrowski “creeping totalitarianism because of handsfree cell phone laws” playbook of dumb.

Rowland was, however, outdone by Rochester-area candidate Michael Giuliani, whose speaking style is a mix of Emo Phillips and Steven Wright.

31 Responses to “Tea New York’s Candidates’ Night”

  1. bill June 14, 2010 at 8:28 am #

    Alan, You KNOW that the Assembly is 108 to 42 Democrats. You KNOW that Sheldon Silver controls what is introduced onto the floor. You KNOW that the Assembly Republicans attempted to offer an alternative budget each of the past 4 years that included reforming medicaid down to even just the California funding level (keep in mind Califorina spends HALF of what NY does on Medicaid despite having TWICE as many people)

    I’m going to assume you intentionally failed to mention this because you take advertising dollars from one of the Senate candidates and want to harm Assemblyman Quinn (btw, take a look at his pension plan….best plan I’ve seen so far). It makes you no better than Illuzzi

    • Alan Bedenko June 14, 2010 at 10:56 am #

      Alan, You KNOW that the Assembly is 108 to 42 Democrats. You KNOW that Sheldon Silver controls what is introduced onto the floor. You KNOW that the Assembly Republicans attempted to offer an alternative budget each of the past 4 years that included reforming medicaid down to even just the California funding level (keep in mind Califorina spends HALF of what NY does on Medicaid despite having TWICE as many people)

      So what you’re saying is that if the people demanded reforms along the lines of what the Brennan Center has suggested, which would take away that power from Sheldon Silver, that would be something you’d either not support, or you consider to be impossible. Because just the mere fact of the status quo vis a vis Sheldon Silver doesn’t mean that has to be perpetual, and one would expect someone like Quinn, who purports to really understand the problems in Albany to utter a peep about that. But he doesn’t. He doesn’t because Albany works just fine, thanks, for Jack Quinn.

      I’m going to assume you intentionally failed to mention this because you take advertising dollars from one of the Senate candidates and want to harm Assemblyman Quinn (btw, take a look at his pension plan….best plan I’ve seen so far). It makes you no better than Illuzzi

      You know what they say when you assume: you’re a lying wanker.

      • bill June 14, 2010 at 5:58 pm #

        I’d support electing 51 members of the opposition party in the Assembly to take away Silvers veto override.

        Quinn is a guy out there with his own pension reform bill that if passed would deliver a “defined benefit” program to NYS Public Employees and Office holders. Jack Quinn is the only attorney in the assembly to vote against an “ethics” reform bill that would give him, and only his profession, cover from releasing their outside income etc.

        Instead of incorrectly suggesting that Jack Quinn is the problem, why not blame any one of the 108 in the majority? Where are you demanding more from Robin Schimminger, Francine DelMonte, Dennis Gabrysak, Mark Schroeder, Crystal Peoples and Sam Hoyt. They vote Sheldon Silver in as Speaker UNANIMOUSLY each and every year and have done nothing to deliver tax relief and jobs to our region. Instead you go after Jack Quinn? It just speaks to your lack of desire to have discourse where you can’t frame the debate.

        I’d be interested in you listing your advertisers to prove that Bill Stackhowski or Tim Kennedy aren’t paying you and your associates.

      • Alan Bedenko June 14, 2010 at 6:19 pm #

        Well, Bill, here’s the thing. I don’t know if you’re new here or what, but I have about 5 years’ worth of blog posts here excoriating Albany pols from both parties for basically being empty vessels. I’m so terribly sorry that my criticism of Jack Quinn III has so upset you. Perhaps you’re employed by him, or otherwise owe your living to him? I don’t know, since I don’t know who you are.

        In any event, the reason your friend
        Jack gets attention in this post is because he spoke at an event I attended. Stachowski wasn’t there. Neither were DelMonte, Schimminger, or any of the other Albany failures you cite. You see, they’re pretty much all failures, your Jack included. Pension reform and ethics reform? Irrelevant without rules reform to enable bills from minority reps to be seriously considered.

        As to your question about my “advertisers”, I have none. Zero. Zilch. I make not a penny off this site. There are some syndicated ads present on the site, but I have nothing to do with them. They aren’t political, in any event, and I haven’t posted anything anti- or pro- Hellmans mayo lately.

        I hope that adequately re-answers your questions, which were already largely answered.

      • bill June 14, 2010 at 6:31 pm #

        So you call Jack Quinn a “worthless” assemblyman because 108 other people won’t allow a vote on his legislation that will save the state Billions?

        Have you looked at his voter history? Read his website? No, you decided to sum up the entirety of his life based on a worthless meet the candidates life.

        Good thing no one summed up your blogging career based off your Eric Massa defense

      • Alan Bedenko June 14, 2010 at 7:24 pm #

        I call Jack Quinn a “worthless” Assemblyman because every last one of them is worthless.  Quinn is even more worthless than most because he’s an Assemblyman who belongs to the minority party.  This way, he can make whatever proposals he wants, to no avail.  They might be quite phenomenal – they might single-handedly make New York great again.  But they’ll never see the light of day – not because 108 other people won’t allow the vote, but because each and every one of them is useless and worthless. 

        As I’ve said now about 3 times, unless there are serious reforms to the way in which the legislature conducts its business, they all – including Quinn – will continue in their worthlessness, with the exception of party leadership.  I don’t need to see Quinn’s website, or know his voting record (let me guess – pretty much exactly how Brian Kolb votes?) because he’s a minority New York State Assemblyman.  

        It’s a good thing no one summed up your commenting career based on your continual “who are your advertisers” baiting. 

        Tell me, does Jack pay you by the word to troll blog comments? 

      • bill June 16, 2010 at 8:19 am #

        Ah, the good old “if you disagree with me you must be a paid operative of the target.”

      • Alan Bedenko June 16, 2010 at 8:27 am #

        Sorry, but in your VERY FIRST COMMENT in this thread, you accused me of being in the pay of Quinn’s opponents, which I am not.

        So, you’re a hypocrite, and you quite notably didn’t answer the question. You merely criticized it. So I’ll take that as tantamount to a paystub from Quinn.

  2. samroberts June 14, 2010 at 8:53 am #

    Saying Pat Gallivan is more polished than Jim Domagalski is like saying apple pie tastes better than road kill.

    Golombek/Hoyt = Who Cares? Golombek is mad as hell? Really? You are a 10-year city councilman who is under a control board. Good job Joe.

    Tom Casey is Lenny Roberto without the fame, he has run and lost just about as many times. I’m sorry you hate Jack Quinn, but that’s no reason to vote for you.

    Grisanti/Thompson = Laughable. Most of the voters in that district are as ignorant as they are stupid.

  3. AL June 14, 2010 at 9:17 am #

    Pundit, how does Golombek expect to win a democratic primary by appealing to a bunch of right wing freakazoids, none (or very few) of which are registered to vote in the primary?

  4. Ward June 14, 2010 at 11:10 am #

    The patronizing and dismissive tone of this coverage was not a surprise.

    If the Tea Party has done nothing other than make life miserable for entrenched and vulnerable hacks like the guy on this clip, we owe it a debt of undying gratitude.

  5. Alex Ham June 14, 2010 at 12:33 pm #

    Pat Galli-sham is so far from polished, it takes the light from polished 10 million years to reach him. If you think re-reading his announcement speech from a month ago is polished, you will think that my daughter’s 1st grade presentation on the hermit crab is pure poetry. Oh and his schtick about trust and integrity – is a joke. Everybody knows “trust and integrity” and Pat do not go together.

    • Shari June 15, 2010 at 12:41 am #

      You obviously are a shill for the ranting and raving lying former mayor of East aurora. If he was so good, why did he get kicked out of office? Gallivan was one of the most honest elected officials this area has ever had.

      • Brian Collins June 15, 2010 at 11:36 pm #

        Two words: sewer pipe

        I recall seeing a flurry of activity and a lot of orange around Patricks Elma estate when the creek was flooding some years back. Must have been how he got the lot for such a great price, huh? Good thing he saved the county all that money by taking the road debris off them for fill too.

        Nice guy, but St. Patrick he’s not.

      • shari June 18, 2010 at 1:54 am #

        Like him or not, he is honest. His place flooded, but he did not receive any speial treatment that any other Elma resident would not receive, nor did he do anything dishonest.Sewer pipe – if you think there is a sewer pipe on his property, you have no clue what you are talking about. You may not like the job he did as sheriff,which is an opinion you are entitled to, but Gallivan is an honest and decnt man. Instead of calling him names or spreading lies, make a case why the party boss/trial lawyer or deposed mayor is a better candidate.

      • Brian Collins June 19, 2010 at 12:47 pm #

        Don’t make me get into specifics Shari as it will not make your pal Patrick look very good! I’ll give you three initials/letters that should mean something if you know what you are talking about and aren’t more than a cheerleader : SAC. (hint- not a person).

        Don’t make the mistake of thinking that I consider Domagalski a good candidate either! He may even be worse, for the resons you mentioned!

      • Alex Ham June 19, 2010 at 9:09 pm #

        Just curious Shari, are you saying lawyers don’t have a right to run for political office? The fact that someone has chosen to be a litigator as a profession is something that should disqualify them as a candidate for political office? Give me a break. I don’t know who I will support yet, but I do know that Domagalski has some substantive ideas and has spent a great deal of time giving back to this community. Pat is only interested in something if its good for Pat. The fact that he is Dale ( I did nothing for WNY in 40 years) Volker’s hand picked selection as a replacement is all anyone needs to know.

      • shari June 25, 2010 at 10:42 pm #

        Alex – how do you know what Pat is interested in? Do you know him personally? Have you asked him what his interest is? Domalgalski is a trial lawyer like Sheldon Silver – the same guy holding up tort reform. Domogalski – Mr. “I sign the checks” and his company has donated 76K to Spitzer, $$ to the criminal Alan Hevesi, $$ to Malcolm Smith, $$ to the Bronx Democratic Committee and $$ to Dave Dipietro??? As far as Jim giving back to the community, everything he has done is self serving and in exchange for people to support him for his lifelong dream of being a state senator. He could care less about you or the citizens of this state – it is all about his dream.

        Brian – SAC? Just say it – while Pat may not be perfect and while I don’t agree with everything he has done, he has still proven to be an honest and decent man. Please introduce me to a perfect person so we can forget all of this and vote for him instead – Pat Gallivan was one of the best elected officials we have seen in Erie County – don’t vote for him if you don’t like him, but if our choice is Gallivan, Domalgalski or DiPietro, Pat stands head and shoulders above the other two.

      • Alex Ham June 28, 2010 at 10:15 pm #


        Although I was undecided prior to now, I can say that I am going to support Domagalski 100% . It is unbelievable to me that you (someone who clearly represents Gallivan) can attack a man for his chosen profession and diminish this man’s life long community service as self serving. Are you serious? Do you know how ignorant that sounds? Domagalski is a lawyer, so what? He works for a law firm and that law firm has over the years supported all sorts of people and causes. Again, so what? Oh and my favorite…….years of community service – all becuase he thought someday he might run for something and then the people he has helped through his service would help him. Really Shari? Really? It seems to me that politics aside, this guy is someone who cares about his community, gives back to his community and wants to make a difference. Look, vote for Gallivan (obviously you are working for him) just have the decency to respect someone for service to community and love for this area. Don’t attack people for that an assign sinister motives to that. We need to encourage more people to give back like this guy. If we treat those who do like you and the Gallivan team have, I am afraid fewer and fewer people will put themself out there.

  6. hank June 14, 2010 at 1:16 pm #

    just like the worst stripe of non-smoker is a reformed smoker, the snarkyness of liberal invective comes from liberals who used to be republicans.

    The guy in the White House (who is vain enough to dye the gray out of his hair), has been on an international apology tour since day one. And this country has zero to apologize for. That’s not Palin/Bachman, it’s just the truth. No country helps the others on this earth like we do. The guy spends more time on vacations than Ike spent on the Golf Course. And he wonders why the seas have not receeded, and Daddy hasn’t plugged the hole yet. Gotta BE at work to DO work.

    The last round of primaries show that the Tea Party folks (of which I am not one) are effecting change. Their support can change races. And as usual, Liberals attack viciously not what they hate, but what they fear.

    • Jon Splett June 14, 2010 at 2:02 pm #

      “vain enough to dye the grey out of his hair”

      You guys are really reaching on the attacks these days huh?

      Are you going to criticize his jump shot next?

  7. Chris Smith June 14, 2010 at 1:57 pm #

    “I’m going to assume you intentionally failed to mention this because you take advertising dollars from one of the Senate candidates and want to harm Assemblyman Quinn (btw, take a look at his pension plan….best plan I’ve seen so far). It makes you no better than Illuzzi”

    From whom do we take advertising dollars? No, seriously, who? We have not accepted any political advertising dollars from anyone this year, nor do we currently plan to do so. We currently have no services contracts with existing politicians, candidates, interest groups or political parties/committees.

    Even if we did accept advertising dollars, so what? Does the fact that every politician in the region advertises on regular news sites, radio, newspapers, and community papers mean those outlets are then incapable of writing what they like? That somehow Bob McCarthy, Tom Bauerle, Brad Riter, Bill O’Loughlin, Sandy Beach or Donn Esmonde can’t have their own points of view?

    When we accept ad money, it’s because the people purchasing the ads want to talk to our large politically active audience (which we measure in a very granular manner for them), they don’t give a shit what content we write.

    • Millard Filmore June 14, 2010 at 4:51 pm #

      You’ve criticized other media outlets before for accepting political advertising dollars and covering those same politicians – here is one example: http://wnymedia.net/wnymedia/smith/2009/07/mickey-kearns-cant-win/

      Now, of course, you’re finally right that it doesn’t matter and that you should be able to accept political advertisements and cover those same politicians but this particular bout of doublespeak should show you that, like most partisans, you start with the conclusion (other guys doing it = bad, we’re doing it = good) and then devise your reasoning.

      • Christopher Smith June 15, 2010 at 10:39 pm #

        You’re missing the point of the criticism of Elena’s interview of Mickey. They didn’t disclose whether or not the advertisement was paid for and the un-serious “questions” she asked him were more befitting campaign literature than a “journalism” website. If and when we accept political advertisements, they will be identified as paid and they will be disclosed on the candidate’s finance forms. We will also offer no softball agenda-throating interviews as if we were campaign staff. Alan and the other writers (myself included) will not be given any editorial direction regarding their articles, posts, videos or interviews.

    • bill June 14, 2010 at 6:01 pm #

      You can do what you want. It just makes you Joe Illuzzi with better formatting and better grammar.

      • Dipshit June 16, 2010 at 2:05 am #

        Before you come on this site and start talking shit like this, you should really do a little research so you don’t sound like a complete ass… Just sayin!

    • Millard Filmore June 16, 2010 at 10:45 am #

      They didn’t disclose whether the ad was paid or not? um, wtf

      I’ve been to a fair amount of websites in my day and advertisements are generally disclosed as ‘advertisement’ and, I think, most humans figure an ad gets on a site by the advertiser paying for it to be there. Just like I assume an ad in the Buffalo News was paid for (and it doesn’t say ‘paid ad’ anywhere around the ad). That was quite a reach there.

      Of course, the point you were making in your previous criticism wasn’t whether the ad was disclosed as ‘paid’ since that is no point at all and since you rightly point out in this thread that other media outlets that clearly receive paid ads from candidates can still cover those candidates in a serious fashion. Now, you may believe the BR interview was softball and laughable (adn really, who could argue) but you but you piled on by implying the ad on the the site and the coverage of the advertiser were an inescapable ‘conflict of interest.’

  8. Brian Collins June 14, 2010 at 3:06 pm #

    Funny that Gallivan would bring up “cutting” jobs and tout lowering OT and his submitted budget without mentioning that at that time the NYS unified court system took over the courtroom security that had previously been handled by deputies from the ECSD. They hired on the hundred or so people that Gallivan takes credit for cutting – and make no mistake – it wasn’t his idea. The same can’t be said for the central booking/ holding center “merger” that has cost millions instead of saving as Patrick had claimed. He also needs to be held accountable for why he decided to jump ship mid-term when the going got tough during the red/green budget fiasco. We can see that he has an obvious eye for picking great talent, I mean, he is the guy who brought the great Tim Howard into the fold.

    • Shari June 15, 2010 at 12:39 am #

      Check your facts. Howard signed the deal to give the courts to the state. Sheriff Dept budget in 2004 was $69 million, Gallivan submitted $62 million budget for 2005, then submitted another $4-5 million in additional cuts.You lie like the deposed Mayor of East Aurora.

      • Brian Collins June 15, 2010 at 12:26 pm #

        Howard may have signed it, but it was a forgone conclusion while Patrick was in office. Everyone knew it was coming down the pike, so to say that he slashed a budget through any doing of his own is disingenuous.

        Since you appear to be a Gallivan fan, maybe you can enlighten us on why Patrick jumped ship for his Pataki-issued golden parachute mid-term when the going got tough? Was there that big a need for another patronage slot?

        How many times did Patrick go over budget when he was the sheriff?

        Explain to me why the “merger” that was spearheaded by Patrick and Joel Giambra actually COST millions and continues to do so as we speak.

        Gallivan was also responsible for the installation of the majority of the troubled leadership that will without a doubt cost millions more in lawsuits and such regarding the jails.

        No lies here Shari. Sorry if the truth hurts.


  1. Transparency | WNYmedia.net - July 1, 2010

    […] Rowland is the tea partying dentist running for Congress against Louise Slaughter. Here’s her Twitter page. […]

Leave a Reply to Millard Filmore Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: