04 November, 2006

For Statewide Office: NYPols Endorses Spitzer, Pirro and Callaghan




It's been more than eight months since we started this effort to bring you news and our thoughts about the 2006 political campaign in New York.

The campaign has taken some crazy twists and turns along the way, but in the end, it has played out pretty much as expected back in February. Now it's time for us to chose.

ELIOT SPITZER FOR GOVERNOR

This one has pretty much been a no-brainer from the start. Despite efforts by the GOP to discredit his accomplishments as attorney general, Spitzer, during his tenure in that office, has shown himself to be an effective leader and a damned good AG.

As we wrote in September when endorsing Spitzer in the primary, as attorney general Spitzer has taken the office beyond its traditional role, fiercly pursuing white-collar crime on Wall Street and taking an activist role in policing internet fraud, harm to the environment and payola in the music industry.

Spitzer has been criticized for being too high-profile and a headline grabber. But we don't mind. We hire politicians to fulfill the duties of the office they have sought. When someone lives up to our expectations perhaps he should take the time to crow about it.

That's how I said it Septmber, I can't say it any better now.

JEANINE PIRRO FOR ATTORNEY GENERAL

This was by far the hardest decision to make. Difficult because although Jeanine Pirro has a solid record as Westchester County District Attorney, Pirro has a lot of baggage.

After thinking long and hard about this, I've decided that most of the baggage Pirro carries is named Al. Last time I checked Pirro's husband is not on the ballot. She deserves to be judged on her own body of work, and for the most part, she has been good at her job and will bring a strong skill set to the attorney general position.

Andrew Cuomo has run a solid campaign. He has certainly redeemed himself in Democratic Party circles and would probably do a decent job as New York's attorney general.

But, based on her rather large advantage in relevant experience, we think Pirro will do a better job.

CHRIS CALLAGHAN FOR COMPTROLLER

Experience is playing a big role in this campaign as well. Lots of folks are saying Chris Callaghan, a former Saratoga County treasurer, doesn't have enough of it to do the job of state comptroller.

We're willing to give him a try.

We know what we have in Alan Hevesi. A man well-qualified for the job - except for the not-so-minor detail of being unable to keep his own fingers out of the state's cookie jar.

We need to stop accepting misdeeds by, and double standards for, our politicians. They will never feel a sense of accountability unless we impose it on him.

Hevesi's use of a state employee as a driver for his wife is not, by any stretch, the biggest political scandal we have come by. And maybe we're guilty of making an example of the current comptroller. But that is exactly what we, the voters, should do on Tuesday.

If you want clean government, demand it.
















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