I sit here in New York with WABC Eyewitness News on television, muted. The words “Vote 2010” intermittently appear on the screen. And I think, “Why? Why should I vote for the next New York Governor when the entire gubernatorial race has been a fiasco?”
The race has been asinine, degenerate, and an insult to New Yorkers and the American people. It has been an embarrassment. The entire world watches New York. And what did it see? It saw foolishness and idiocy.
Before the primary of September 14th, before Carl Paladino stepped into the race, it was normal, boring, but normal.
Rick Lazio was expected to win the Republican primary and challenge the unchallenged Andrew Cuomo. He was unchallenged because no Democrat had the chutzpah to try. Cuomo had the well-known name, political experience, current position of New York State Attorney General, and connections. He was the political Hulk. Lazio was Alvin the Chipmunk. Cuomo was New York’s next Governor, understood. At this point, it seemed as though there was no point to vote, but there was a point.
Then, Carl Paladino, surprisingly, won the Republican primary. He had the chutzpah to take Cuomo on, but he is, admittedly, no politician. He does not know the rules of the political game. Instead of learning them, he decided to make his own rules and play his own game.
His first rule was to make a name for himself, quickly, to try to put himself on an even playing field with Cuomo’s well-known name. He did not care how he made his name known as long as he did. Remember, he was playing by his own rules; his own vision of politics. So, he came charging out of the box like a bull, stomping and snorting. That is when the fiasco began.
I, the rest of New York, and, unfortunately, the world, were subjected to Paladino’s name-calling of just about everyone in New York politics: Silver, Patterson, Pataki, you name it. We heard bigoted remarks that dragged the Anti-Christ into the race and unsubstantiated sexual accusations against Cuomo.
Then, the race went from offensive to absurd. Paladino, the Catholic, moral, anti-gay, anti-abortion, Pillar of the Community who knew what was morally “right” for everyone was about to punch-out a New York Post editor. Why the potential fisticuffs? Paladino was trying to protect the privacy of the “love child” from his extra-marital affair.
At this point, there was a clear point to vote. It was to make sure that Paladino did not take his absurdity to Albany and become in charge of the state of New York.
On October 10th, Paladino made blatant anti-gay remarks that buried him so deep there are not enough shovels to dig him out of his wretched hole by November 2nd.
Now, it seems there is no point to vote, again, but there is a point.
On October 18th, the gubernatorial debate I had been dying to hear since the September 14th primary took place. I give it two grades: A “D” for disappointing and an “F” for funny. It was not even a debate; it was a panel of seven candidates. Cuomo was poised and articulate. All that was missing was a sign on his chest that read, “I am a Governor.” Paladino was haggard and bumbling. His sign read “Show me the way to go home.”
Cuomo is the new Governor of New York. So, what is the point of the election on November 2nd? Why should we vote at all after being subjected to this fiasco of a race?
I am not happier than anyone else about the fiasco. It has dampened my already soggy view of politics and politicians. But I will vote for two reasons.
First, if everyone assumes everyone else is going to vote for Cuomo, he won’t get enough votes to win.
Secondly, if I quit a game, I can never win.