Thursday, November 17, 2011

Elections 2011: Rope-a-Dope?

Tantalizing.   Christine Carrie Fein speculates in the print edition of City Newspaper whether the Monroe County GOP put up an appealing and credible candidate for District Attorney as a purely strategic move.

Not because they had more than a modest expectation they'd win, but to force Joe Morelle to spend money, time and effort on a DA's race that should have been his from Day 1.

Was that the reason?   Certainly it had that effect.   The County Democratic Committee had to focus on preserving its grip on the DA's office.   It could mount a truly full-scale effort in a only a single County Legislative district, to save Morelle protege Vincent Esposito.   (All along Dem HQ planned no more than a perfunctory effort in the County Executive's race.)

We don't think Ms. Fein's speculation represents an either-or proposition.   Republicans ran Bill Taylor because he was a great candidate who could mount a competitive, even winning race for an open seat.   Were they aware that doing so gave them a rope-a-dope strategy, to minimize Democratic effectiveness in the County Legislature and County Executive races?   Absolutely.

Our 2011 Election Analysis continues, with more County Legislative races up next.


Rottenchester said...

Let's not overthink this - it's always better to have a good candidate than a bad candidate. That's not some super-secret, n-dimensional political calculus, it's just common sense. My question is whether Taylor was a good candidate.

Remember that Taylor got beaten worse than Frankel (58/42 versus 57/43). That's a huge ticket split, which means that voters were motivated to vote against the candidate hand-picked by the person they trusted to run the county. Even though Doorley wasn't the world's best candidate, and Maggie was carrying her weight at the top of the ballot, Taylor was crushed. I have to conclude that voters like Maggie but don't like her underlings. Couldn't a better candidate, one with fewer obvious ties to the county administration and Robutrad and all that, have made it a real race?

With the huge advantage incumbency provides in the DA's office, I don't see how the GOP will ever have a better chance to get that seat than they did this cycle, so the GOP was bringing its A game. I have to conclude that either Taylor was the best they had, or the GOP was unwilling to set aside rewarding an insider for a real chance at the DA's office. Either way, the GOP leadership showed weakness, not strength, with this pick.

Anonymous said...

Taylor was a Tom Cook pick. Since Minarik got fired, Cook and his sidekick Arnie Rothschild are running the GOP. It is well known that Maggie and her double dipper husband are close to Cook and his wife. Reilich, not so much. Reilich collects a fat salary (thank you, donors !!) but doesn't run the campaigns. Take a look at who is producing the ads and doing the media buys.

Anonymous said...

Nov 17, 956pm,

This is one of the most ridiculous posts I have ever seen on this site! Taylor was a great candidate! Cook has been the margin in many Republican victories! Reilich has been winning everything in sight...even though he could not pull off the DA race. And Rothchild does ad work for many candidates, including, Bill Johnson, Steve Lindley, and other Democrats...what are you talking about?