26 October, 2006

Hall Makes Dems' Key-Race List

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has put the race for New York's 19th District on one of its lists of closely watched races.

Democrat John Hall announced today that the race has been added to the DCCC's "Red-to-Blue" list of tight House races involving Democratic challengers trying to oust Republican incumbents. The incumbent in this case being Rep. Sue Kelly.

The DCCC first put Hall on its radar on Oct. 10, when the 19th District race was placed on the committee's "Emerging Races" list, an initial indication that the party felt the race might be becoming competitive.


Kelly's campaign has been trying to paint Hall as a hypocrite in recent days, saying his environmentalist campaign rhetoric doesn't square with his personal investment portfolio.

Hall allegedly holds a stake in a mutual fund which invests some of its considerable funding in a company called Schlumberger - an oil-industry services company that has been fined for spilling PCBs into a South Carolina lake and for allegedly submitting fraudulent visas for foreign workers.

This, according to Kelly campaign spokesman Jay Townsend, makes Hall a "hypocrite."

"For months he's paraded around the 19th district brandishing his environmental credentials and bemoaning the price of oil. Now we learn he's personally profited by the run-up in oil prices, and is invested in an oil company that breaks our immigration laws, dumps PCBs into a River and has registered off-shore to evade U.S. tax liabilities."

The Hall campaign is a bit annoyed that Kelly's people have been snooping around Hall's personal investment portfolio.

And, Hall campaign spokesman Tom Staudter says he finds the charge by Kelly more than a bit ironic.

"Sue Kelly the millionaire has some audacity to peer into the well-diversified retirement account of John Hall, which is worth a good deal less than the $65,000 the oil companies have given to her.

"She should explain why she pocketed the S65,000 worth of contributions from oil companies and then voted to give them $6 billion in tax subsidies. And what about her personal assets in Exxon/Mobil? As this oil behemoth scores record profits at the pump, Kelly pockets record returns from them on Wall Street."


Kelly's campaign today announced the endorsement of the following 11 law-enforcement organizations:

  • NYS Fraternal Order of Police
  • NYS Association of P.B.A.’s
  • Affiliated Police Associations of Westchester County, Inc.
  • NYC Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association
  • Detectives’ Endowment Association – City of New York
  • Police Conference of New York
  • Westchester Hispanic Law Enforcement Association
  • NYS Court Officers Association
  • NYS Supreme Court Officers Association
  • Village of Fishkill PBA
  • Police Emerald Society of Westchester


Rich French, RNN commentator and host of the show "Real Politics" recently aired a blistering editorial, blasting Kelly for refusing to attend the cable station's recent debate, for declining to appear on his show and for generally running a low-profile campaign.

French argues that voters have the right to answers to a number of questions, which he ticked off in the piece. You can see the editorial by clicking here.


A poll published today by Diageo/The Hotline shows that undecided voters seem to be breaking for the Democrats in the race to control Congress.

When asked which party they would rather see control Congress, registered voters, by a 16-point margin, said they would prefer the Democrats be in charge. That's up from a 10-point lead by the Democrats in September. The number of people who answered neither, meanwhile, dropped by 5 points - to 5% in October from 10% in September.

Among likely voters, the poll puts the Democrats' lead at 18 points.

President Bush's approval rating in this poll declines to 40% in October from 42% in September.

For those of you really into the numbers, click here for the complete breakdown.


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