Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The Narrative in NY-26

The Post-Standard in Syracuse reports on a special election result that will warm liberal hearts:

The Democrat rode a wave of voter discontent over the national GOP’s plan to change Medicare and overcame decades of GOP dominance here to capture Tuesday’s special election in New York’s 26th Congressional District.

Well, that settles it – the American people want limitless entitlement spending and are willing to accept the necessary punishing tax increases. At least, that’s the narrative donkey Democrats will ride to next November.

Don’t read past the second paragraph, and the NY-26 special election paints a dire picture for the GOP. As sometimes happens, though, all the good news for the left is loaded into the first few sentences…

Hochul defeated Republican state Assemblywoman Jane Corwin on Tuesday night, capturing 47 percent of the vote to 43 percent for Corwin, to win the seat vacated by disgraced Republican Chris Lee. A wealthy tea party candidate, Jack Davis, took 9 percent.

Democrat Kathy Hochul “rode a wave of voter discontent” over GOP budget proposals… to a 4 percent victory with a conservative* third-party candidate taking 9 percent. In a special election necessitated by an outrageous sex scandal involving the previous GOP congressman. But we know Medicare is the reason, because the Democrat’s supporters say so!

The special election that became a referendum on the health care plan for the nation’s seniors may serve as a warning shot to further GOP efforts to cut popular entitlement programs.

“The three reasons a Democrat was elected to Congress in the district were Medicare, Medicare and Medicare,” Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Steve Israel, D-N.Y., said in an interview.

This stuff goes both ways. When Scott Brown won in Kennedyland, conservatives made a fuss about what it meant for the future. In that case, the GOP victory was surprising. In this case, the Democrat’s victory is surprising. In neither case does a single issue tell the whole story – though it’s worth noting that Scott Brown took the seat of America’s most beloved leftist dynasty, didn’t have a tabloid scandal on his side, and didn’t have a third-party candidate pulling 9 percent of his opponent’s likely voters.

At least Hochul has some bold ideas for New York’s future!

“How about ending big handouts for Big Oil?” she said. “How about making millionaires and billionaires pay their fair share? We can do all that and not decimate Medicare.”

The victory of another Democrat who’s wrong about nearly everything isn’t good news, but the only tragedy here for conservatives would be accepting the left’s hollow rhetoric.

* Apparently the “tea party” candidate was a Democrat? Stay classy, New York.

Follow me on Twitter: @jasonahart

Cross-posted from that hero.


  1. First of all, I thought the Tea Party was nonpartisan and was filled with Democrats, and not just conservatives? I guess not.

    Second, the polling showed that as the Tea Party candidate lost support, it went to the Democratic candidate. Therefore, it's kind of hard to say that the third party candidate "cost" the election... an election the Republican candidate was leading right until she publicly endorsed the Paul Ryan "Kill Medicare" plan.

    John Boehner campaigned heavily in the district. The NRCC spent nearly a half a million in the final weeks. American Crossroads, too. You guy lost a seat that used to belong to Jack Kemp.

  2. Like Public Enemy used to say, don't believe the hype. The reason for the special election was a sex scandal involving the Republican who had formerly held the seat. No, that never rubs voters the wrong way, especially those weird conservative values voters who might have stayed home on election day. Nevertheless, that whopping 4% win was in some ways influenced by Mediscare tactics, but there will be a big difference between NY26 and 2012: time. Time to focus on the differences in political agendas and to combat the lies about the Ryan plan.


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