New York’s 2020 Political Winners and Losers – By George J. Marlin

Posted December 3, 2020 by streetcornerconservative
Categories: Articles/Essays/Op-Ed, Blank Slate Media

The following appeared on Monday, November 30, 2020 on The Island Now’s website:

Here is my take on the political winners and losers in this year’s game of New York politics.

Winners:

Peter King: As a member of Congress for 28 years, King has served his nation and his constituents with distinction. He proved that being civil in the political arena pays off. A public official since he was elected to the Hempstead Town Council in 1971, King should be the model for politicians of every stripe.

Tom DiNapoli: The state comptroller has used his audit powers effectively to expose government incompetence, waste and corruption. He determined that the Empire State Development Corporation squandered hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars in high-technology projects that have not produced intended results. He revealed the state’s Medicaid leviathan made more than $700 million in unnecessary costs and overpayments. And he has been alerting state and local governments to the devastating impact the economic shutdown is having on their operating budgets.

Laura Curran: In fiscal 2019, the county executive achieved the first balanced budget according to Generally Accepted Accounting Principles in a long time. In 2020, she has worked effectively with the Nassau Interim Finance Board to address the fiscal crisis caused by the governor’s shutdown of the economy.

Lee Zeldin: Contrary to Democratic Party expectations, Zeldin was re-elected in a landslide, receiving 61 percent of the vote. The voters rewarded him because as The Almanac of American Politics has pointed out, “he was responsive to local sentiments, including his opposition to Republican tax cuts that capped the deduction for state and local taxes employed by his affluent and highly taxed constituents.”

Andrew Garbarino: The Republican state assemblyman defied the pundits and kept Peter King’s congressional seat in the red column. Hopefully, Garbarino’s predecessor serves as his model when he gets to Washington in January.

Losers:

Andrew Cuomo: The governor refuses to admit that he made a reckless policy decision that cost the lives of over 6,000 seniors in nursing homes throughout the state. His book promoting his leadership skills during the pandemic is an insult to the memory of the nursing home victims and their grieving families.

Bill de Blasio: The city’s lazy and incompetent mayor has been unable to come to grips with the gravity of the issues New Yorkers are grappling with. If Gov. Cuomo does not reactivate the Financial Control Board to seize control of the city’s finances, he will be guilty of permitting the city, under the insouciant leadership of de Blasio, to continue on the treadmill to fiscal, economic and social oblivion.

Rudy Giuliani: His ludicrous “election fraud” antics on national television destroyed his reputation as “America’s Mayor.” Going forward, he should limit his appearances to his favorite watering hole, The Club Macanudo, located on Manhattan’s fashionable Upper East Side.

Jack Schnirman: Nassau’s county’s comptroller, a self-proclaimed “fiscal watchdog,” appears to have been asleep in the dog house. When he left his post as Long Beach City manager, he didn’t figure out he was overpaid $53,000 in severance pay. How absurd is that for someone who claims he knows the buck? The DA’s probe justifiably concluded that Schnirman and other Long Beach officials were guilty of “egregious incompetence.” Another blunder: the county’s inspector general reported in November that “a fraud scam against the Nassau’s comptroller’s office found controls were ‘not effective’ in preventing a scheme in which $2.1 million in payments were approved for transfer to a fraudster’s bank account.”

Richard Nicolello: The longtime county legislator, who voted for budgets in the 1990s that brought the county to the edge of bankruptcy and subsequently voted for the creation of NIFA to rescue it, is now trying to prevent NIFA from helping the county save millions of dollars in debt interest payments. His reason for stonewalling: NIFA members had been mean to a Republican county executive. He’s referring to the convicted felon and fiscal bungler Ed Mangano. How sad is that excuse for inaction?

Kevin Law: Suffolk County’s MTA board member came up with the dopiest idea of the year: to address the transportation agency’s projected $16 billion deficit through 2024, he called for cutting fares in 2021 “to generate more revenues by increasing ridership than if we increase fares and continued the depressed ridership.” Apparently, Law fails to grasp that LIRR ridership is down over 75 percent because people are working remotely and safely from home with their employer’s blessing. Hence, dropping the fare a buck or two will not convince these mostly white-collar workers to become dashing commuters. In addition, cutting fares will be a slap in the face to first responders and essential workers who have risked their lives taking public transportation throughout the pandemic while paying full fares.

Minority Voters Are Rejecting Identity Politics – By George J. Marlin

Posted November 20, 2020 by streetcornerconservative
Categories: Articles/Essays/Op-Ed, Newsmax, Political Issues

This article I wrote appeared on the Newsmax.com web site on Friday, November 20, 2020.

What happened November 3? – By George J. Marlin

Posted November 17, 2020 by streetcornerconservative
Categories: Articles/Essays/Op-Ed, Blank Slate Media, Political Issues

The following appeared on Monday, November 16, 2020 on The Island Now’s website:

For months, pundits, pollsters and Democratic Party spokesmen were insisting that on Nov. 3, a blue tsunami would wash away Donald Trump and his Republican sycophants.

Joe Biden’s landslide victory, they told us ad nauseum, would make Chuck Schumer majority leader, increase Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s House membership, topple GOP governors and turn numerous red state legislatures blue.

Well, the blue tsunami turned out to be nothing more than an electoral trickle.

True, Trump lost. Nevertheless, he received more votes than any Republican in history. His total, 73 million was 10 million more than he received in 2016.

Working-class folks and seniors of every race and creed came out in droves for Trump. Those voters—once the key constituencies that elected Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman and John Kennedy—deserted the party of their parents and grandparents because they were tired of Democratic Party elites who frowned upon their bourgeois values and ridiculed them as uneducated “deplorables,” “irredeemables,” and “chumps.”

As a result, Biden won the popular vote by only 4 percent, not the 8 percent to 10 percent polling experts preceded.

As for the Senate, it is likely Sen. Mitch McConnell will remain majority leader. Predictions that Sens. Lindsay Graham, Susan Collins and Joni Ernst were slated for defeat were wrong.

Senator Collins of Maine—the key target of Democrats because she dared to vote for Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination—easily beat her opponent by 12 percentage points. Polls that had her losing by  9 percent were off by an astounding 21 points.

Democratic expectations in the House failed to materialize. Instead of picking up 20 additional seats, Democrats are currently down 11 and that could grow once all the ballots are counted.

Speaker Pelosi’s majority will be the narrowest since the 1940s.

On state levels, contrary to predictions, Republicans gained one governorship and on Jan. 1 will control the governor’s mansion in 27 states.

In state legislature elections, Ballotpedia reports that “Republicans won new majorities in at least two chambers: the New Hampshire State Senate and House of Representatives. There were no chambers where Democrats won new majorities in 2020.”

Republicans will continue to have majorities in at least 60 state legislative chambers vs. the Democrats at 38. This will give the GOP an edge in redrawing congressional district lines next year.

Most interesting, Trump made significant gains with working-class minorities.

Overall, he received 26 percent of non-white voters. Among Latinos, 32 percent cast their ballots for Trump, up from 28 percent in 2016. Support among black voters went from 8 percent in 2016 to 12 percent. An astounding 18 percent of black men voted for Trump.

In Florida, Trump made incredible gains in Latino communities. He won 55 percent of Cuban-Americans and overall Latino support for the president totaled 47 percent, up 12 points.

These numbers explain why in heavily Latino Miami-Dade County, Biden carried it by only 7 percentage points vs. Hillary Clinton’s 30-point lead four years earlier.

Texas witnessed similar shifts.

In Starr County, located along the Mexican border and over 90 percent Latino, Democrats have routinely carried it by more than 43 percentage points. This year Starr County residents, The Wall Street Journal reported, “voted for President Trump in a red wave that moved the South Texas county from Hillary Clinton’s 60-point margin in 2016 to a 5-point win for Democratic candidate Joe Biden, the largest swing to Trump of any county in the U.S.”

In neighboring Zapata County, which Clinton carried by 33 points, Trump beat Biden 53% to 47%.

As for deep blue New York, Democratic expectations were also dashed. Donald Trump received 41 percent of votes cast vs. 36.52 percent in 2016. His vote total is up at least 300,000.

Republicans are poised to pick up two Congressional seats, and five Assembly seats. Democratic plans to obtain a veto-proof state Senate appear to have failed.

Yes, even in New York, many voters made it clear they reject the plans of extreme leftist Democrats led by Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez to raise taxes, to defund the police, and to eliminate bail, charter schools and private health insurance.

Reading the election tea leaves, State Democratic Chairman Jay Jacobs, took a shot at AOC.

“AOC,” he said, “has no standing on how to run a general election in the suburbs and upstate. AOC is in a district that’s 6-1 Democrat and she couldn’t find a Republican in her district with binoculars … I invite AOC to come to Long Island and stand for election in one of our districts. You’ll see different results.”

While Trump may be on his way out, the conservative movement is not down and out.

And if Biden succumbs to pressure form the radicals in his party and enacts the far-left programs outlined in the Sanders-Biden 110-page Unity Manifesto, don’t be surprised if the GOP makes an even stronger comeback in the 2022 mid-term elections.

Book Review of George Marlin’s new book Mario Cuomo: The Myth and the Man – By Vincent J. Cannato

Posted November 7, 2020 by streetcornerconservative
Categories: Articles/Essays/Op-Ed, Mario Cuomo

This book review of Mario Cuomo: The Myth and the Man by Vincent J. Cannato, appeared on National Review’s web site on Saturday, November 7, 2020.

Governor Andrew Cuomo, Mario Cuomo and the Catholic Church – By George J. Marlin

Posted November 6, 2020 by streetcornerconservative
Categories: Articles/Essays/Op-Ed, Mario Cuomo, Newsmax

This article I wrote appeared on the Newsmax.com web site on Friday, November 6, 2020.