08 September, 2006

NYPols Endorses John Hall In 19th District Democratic Primary

Of the the primary races we've been tracking over the past several months, this one has been the most intriguing and the most fun to watch.

Four Democrats remain in the race for New York's 19th Congressional District seat - John Hall, Judy Aydelott, Ben Shuldiner and Darren Rigger. All have taken positions on the issues that fit well within the principles of the party. All would raise the right issues in Washington and all would seek change from the failed policies of the Bush administration in so many areas.

On the fundraising front two candidates are clearly ahead of the others. John Hall and Judy Aydelott have the most money to spend in a general election, but they have far, far less cash then the PAC-assisted incumbent, Republican Sue Kelly.

Of the four remaining candidates, only two garnered enough support to win endorsements at the county conventions in the spring. John Hall won the support of the rank-and-file in three counties - Rockland, Orange and Dutchess - and won in a walk. Darren Rigger got the nod in Putnam County.

John Hall has also garnered the lion's share of other endorsments. He's been backed by environmentalist Robert F. Kennedy Jr., veteran New York Congressman Maurice Hinchey, the Sierra Club, the AFL-CIO as well as the Communications Workers of American and the influential health care workers union 1199 SEIU.

Cash, local party support and endorsements are important and John Hall has all three.

In our opinion, Hall also has a the best plans for the country.

On many issues the candidates are all on the same page. On others, the differences are subtle, but important.

Both Hall and Shuldiner seek a quick withdrawal of troops from Iraq. That's one point for each.

All of the candidates talk about greater access to health care. Hall and Shuldiner call for universal health care under a single-payer plan. One more point for each.

Shuldiner, Aydelott and Hall all believe President's Bush's underfunded, No Child Left Behind legislation is not improving education. Three cheers, one for each.

On energy, all the candidates recognize that finding new forms of energy, in a hurry, is a must. But John Hall has put forth a specific, 30-plus page plan to transform the Indian Point site from a tragic accident waiting to happen to a home for research and development of alternative energy technologies. Hall's activism on the energy issue goes back decades.

The New York Times has endorsed Aydelott in this race, citing her deep roots in the community.

In our opinion a long-term commitment to the Democratic Party and progressive principals count for more.

We endorse John Hall.


At 7:38 AM, Anonymous Sam said...

More great endorsements from NYPols! You've been right-on with each one so far. Keep 'em coming!

At 2:59 PM, Anonymous James said...

I've got to disagree with you on this one Ron. You left out one key issue: electability. John Hall will, unfortunately, be easily attacked as "weak on national defense" by Sue and her cronies. Ben Shuldiner doesn't have any skeletons in his closet, is right-on with the issues (as you duly point out), and has run an extensive and relentless grassroots campaign. I'm voting for Ben tomorrow.


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