Tag Archives: Sasiadek

SD-59. Crowded.

5 May

Yesterday, former Erie County Republican Committee chairman Jim Domagalski announced his candidacy for what has for 40 years been Dale Volker’s state senate seat. In that 40 year period, WNY and Volker’s district has rapidly declined despite his – and senate Republican – “leadership”. It’s safe to say that no matter who wins, the people of that zig-zagged gerrymandered district may be better off.

Of course, I don’t think we need a state senate. And if you thought about it, you’d reach the same conclusion. Last year, we asked Bill Stachowski and Antoine Thompson why we needed a state senate, and the reply was comically free of substance. Yesterday, WNYMedia.net asked Domagalski essentially the same question, but we rephrased it to use the term “bicameral legislature”. Here’s Domagalski’s response:

[HTML1]

Good answer, and he’s technically right that the Senate acts as a de facto check on the more populous Assembly.

But a unicameral legislature doesn’t mean abolish the Senate and leave the Assembly as is. Unicam means abolishing both legislatures in their current form, and creating something completely new out of whole cloth. Everyone out, nonpartisan redistricting based rationally on population, and nonpartisan election with no party caucusing. See Nebraska. If you couple that with the Brennan Center’s recommended reforms to ensure that there is freedom to propose bills and free debate, then you have an opportunity to genuinely return the government to the people.

Across-the-board tax and spending cuts address the symptoms, not the disease.

Also entering the race is a lone Democrat, Chris Sasiadek. You can check out Chris’ Facebook page here.

The war within the local Republican party is embodied by the apparent entry in this race by former Erie County Sheriff Pat Gallivan. It’s rumored that a faction of the local GOP loyal to Tom Reynolds (rolleyes) is upset at Domagalski for the way in which Volker was allegedly pushed out of the race by the former party chairman, and Gallivan is their revenge.

In addition, there is a genuine birther in the race. David DiPietro primaried Volker last time around, and won in Erie County. DiPietro hosts a weekly radio program where he takes phone calls only from his good friends in the Tea Party movement. If you want to know what radio shows sounded like in dictatorships, that’s your show. He has since become a leader in the fractured local tea party movement (he is aligned with the Paulist Ostrowskiite faction), and his name popped up in the group of Paladino emails WNYMedia.net received last month.

Check out that idiotic, ignorant birther email. “Heeza Muzlim”, for God’s sake. One glance tells you it’s false. Snopes confirms it. As a matter of fact, Snopes counts 47 urban legends being created about George W. Bush. For seekrit kenyan muzlim frum indoneezha Barry Soetoro, there are now 87. Of those, 43% of the Bush rumors were true. Only 9% of the Obama rumors are true. The birther movement is a particular strain of xenophobic, ignorant conspiracy mongering, and its adherents don’t deserve to be treated seriously.

Primary Challenge founder Len Roberto had earlier decided that his annual run for office would be for Volker’s district, but he’s since decided to run for Congress against Brian Higgins (NY-27). Roberto belongs to the rival, Palinist wing of the local tea party movement.

There has also been a rumor spreading about former IP chairman Tony Orsini running as a Democrat. That would be humor of epic proportions.

Open Senate seats only pop up in this case once every two generations. It’ll be interesting to see if the campaigns rise above the angry pablum that seems to be in vogue now (See Paladino, Carl) and actually begins discussing serious ways to fundamentally change how Albany does business.