Kate Murray's bizarre behavior has led me and others to believe she simply does not fear reprisal from voters. This suggests that the best ways to achieve our goals are to raise our voices and give her an opponent.
Next week, part of that will come true.
"Arrogance" and Opponents
(Props to reader BR for this tip) The Long Island Business News, which I have begun to read more regularly, had an interesting tidbit today. It has run a piece in which Jay Jacobs, chairman of the Nassau County Democratic Party, criticizes Kate Murray's "arrogance" and her stewardship of the Town of Hempstead. He also echoed my assertion that Kate Murray's actions do not seem consistent with her stated goal of serving the people first. She has made time to take care of her relatives and donors, but she has Joe Ra and Mike Deery pull people out of Hempstead Council meetings for the crime of wanting to talk about the Lighthouse. This is clearly not right, and it must be more deeply scrutinized.
(Blogger's Note: I just realized that this did not sound the way I meant it to - According to many reports, Mr. Ra and Mr. Deery discuss the Lighthouse with voters in a different room outside of the Town Council meeting rather than allowing the person to speak to Murray and the Board directly. I did not mean to imply that she had people thrown out - and I'm sorry if I didn't make that clear)
Jacobs also shared this important bit of news - the Democratic Party will announce Kate Murray's challenger next week. Mr. Jacobs did not share any details, but he promised the candidate has been picked and is "formidable." Stay tuned - I will continue to follow this story as more information comes out.
(Blogger's Note: I will attempt to contact the Nassau Democratic Party to deepen my understanding of this. I am also attempting to fact-check Mr. Jacobs' assertion that Democrats now outnumber Republicans in the Town of Hempstead)
(Props to reader Mike 8 for this tip) In other news, Kate Murray has found a spiritual companion for the Nigerian Dwarf Goats. According to The Community Alliance, Ms. Murray has now spent more time meeting with a runaway cow than she has with the Lighthouse developers.
I don't know whether to laugh or cry.
(Blogger's Note: The Community Alliance confirms this piece is satire - though like every great satirical work it does not lie very far from the truth. Therefore, I've picked c) all of the above - I'm laughing at their great satire, and crying that the whole story wasn't even that hard to believe)
Those clamoring for a Kate Murray opponent will have one next week. This is a step in the right direction, but let's pause for a quick reality check. Kate Murray won re-election in 2007 with 68.75% of the vote, so we are not talking about an already-vulnerable incumbent. Her act seems to be wearing thin, but I want to defer to a source quoted in the LIBN piece:
“I think that her act is wearing thin and a combo of changing demographics and economic anxiety will make her race in 2011 a real one...And why did she hire her father? Why?” - Republican Source, Quoted in LIBN ArticleRepublicans are clearly starting to worry, and I'm sure this is why they are so concerned about party affiliation of Lighthouse residents. At the same time, the Democrats seem to have smelled blood and begun to swarm around Kate Murray and the Hempstead machine.
This would almost certainly make the Lighthouse a major political issue, and I've thought previously about the implications of that....As a matter of fact, one Democratic source quoted in the same LIBN article is very confident of a Murray upset. However, at the same time, this source says "[A]ll bets are off if they [approve re-zoning for the Lighthouse Project] before Election Day...That's a game-changer." This begs the question: has the Democratic Party commissioned some polls on this? Do they know something we don't, or does this confirm their intentions to make the Lighthouse a dominant issue this campaign season?
Also, in the same vein, Kate Murray's margin of victory is not what it seems. While she won with 68.75%, or slightly more than 2/3, of the vote, there were only 96,000 votes cast in a Town that claims almost 800,000 residents. It will be crucial for us and all principles involved to educate the public and help drive people who want a way forward to the polls. Maybe we can't convince enough people who voted for Murray in 2007 to switch, but we could very well be able to bring enough new voters into the process.
This is our opportunity. Let's seize it, and here's hoping we have a real race in Hempstead and prove that Long Island needs the Lighthouse.
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