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Well, with all the focus on the Presidential election going on, I kind of forgot that I didn’t vote in my current district in the last election. It’s well enough, I guess that it’s time for a clean break after pulling the lever for the man who was going to clean up New York State, then celebrate by getting his dirty on with the likes of ‘Kristen’. Not to mention the fact that I’m a little ashamed that I pulled the lever for his lieutenant governor, not fully aware that he was (legally) blind. (Aside from outbursts of Ray Charles-meets-Benson jokes, it likely wouldn’t have made a difference.)

As much as I have been following this year’s presidential campaign, I have to admit, that I haven’t paid a lick of attention to any of the other races I’m voting on less than two weeks from now. Well, armed with a little free time and incentive to post something, anything to this website for the first time in ages, Well Whiskey Friday presents his first ever voting guide!

Not so fast, (some) Manhattanites, Queenspeople, Staten Islanders, Californians, denizens of the Planet Vrog, and really, anyone outside of my immediate voting place at PS 17 on North 5th Street and Roebling Avenue. I only have so many hours in a day. So, I’m just going to give you the lowdown on my ballot. Maybe this will inspire you to do some actual research into your ballots, wherever you vote.

Congress: I live in the State of New York’s 12th district. (The Fightin’ 12th, as Stephen Colbert would say.)

The area: Covers Bushwick to the east, Greenpoint/Long Island City to the north, then inexplicably spreads all the way to parts of the Lower East Side and East Village in Manhattan to the West, then somehow snakes its way down to Sunset Park (without touching Bed-Stuy, Caroll Gardens, Red Hook, Park Slope, and Downtown Brooklyn). I’m sure there was no gerrymandering going on here at all. Just a diverse group of Latino neighborhoods, hipsters, artists, skaters, yuppies, Eastern European immigrants, and more Latino neighborhoods. I’m sure you won’t notice a common thread with the candidates mentioned at all.

The battle: Incumbent Nydia M. Velasquez (Democrat, Working Families Party) v. challenger Allan E. Romaguera (Republican, Conservative).

Who are these people?: The Republican challenger, Romaguera, says you can call him Al. He’s married, with two kids, is the same age as my mother, Catholic, and has worked as a letter of credit specialist the past ten years. So who would know more about the bailout, right? As you can see, he’s  consistent in the stands he takes.

(Really, it wouldn’t have killed him to fill that out? I mean, it’s free, right? He sure as hell hasn’t spent any money advertising. Lord help this fool if I see him actually campaigning any where in my neighborhood.)

The incumbent has been representing since 1992 and was the first Puerto Rican woman to be elected to Congress. And it looks like she isn’t going anywhere. (Even though she didn’t really fill out that form either, except about immigration. But then again, she has a Congressional record.)

Analysis: A veteran Congresswoman who looks poised to be something of a (minor) leader in the majority party (if polls hold steady), or some dude who apparently runs for office in his spare time? Velazquez will win easily, but I might just vote for Al so he can be stunned during November 5th’s breakfast to hear that he got a vote. Give the man hope for 2010, when the Republican Party goes, “Really? You want to do this again? Sure, what the hell, we need somebody.”

State Senate/Assembly/City Council: Because of my move, I guess I am cut out of these races entirely, many of these take place in off years However, your district may have a race going on, you can check here. Not that the the New York State Legislature or City Council are useful anyway. But I found out that my Assemblyperson is a dude named Vito Lopez, and my State Senator is some guy named  Martin Malave Dilan. My councilperson is a lady named Diana Reyna, the first Dominican woman to be elected to a citywide office. Also, disappointingly, I have no civil court judge to research, Brooklyn seems all set in that department as well.

Ballot proposals: Just one. Some bullshit about whether or not veterans need to be collecting disability checks form the government in order to get points on civil service exams for being disabled. Huh? What? A doctor’s note or your military record isn’t enough, you have to be collecting a check? I don’t get this, and I’d like to know who the hell wasted my time and yours getting this on the ballot. I’m voting no, although I should be able to write in, “Aren’t people getting paid lots of dollars to figure this the fuck out themselves?” What’s next? A referendum on what kind of bulbs and wattage we should use on our traffic lights ? Honestly? No on 1!

Wow.

Guess I’ve learned that there’s a reason the Presidential race is getting all the coverage. No local races and token opposition to a veteran Congresswoman (I’d bet even money ‘Al’ doesn’t even know he’s running for Congress, or has at least forgotten). Easily one of the worst ideas I’ve ever had for a post on any of my sites. Hope you had as much fun reading it as I didn’t have researching it. Maybe there’s a lesson in here somewhere about our electoral system, but the apathy is already beginning to set in. If you’ll excuse me, I have to go to YouTube to hear Sarah Palin say that small-town America is the real America to fire me up again.

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2 Comments

    • Williamsburg's Finest
    • Posted October 22, 2008 at 5:35 pm
    • Permalink
    • Reply

    first and foremost, this “dude” you speak of happens to be the leader for the Democratic Party of Brooklyn. Secondly, if you are dissatisfied with whats going on in your district get active. Thirdly, remember all politics is local; in case you forget, Obama has advocated for Bottom-up change not top-down change and so inorder to truly help out politics for the country you need to get involved. People always want to affect BIG change and dont focus on the SMALL change they can do. This is why our politics will NEVER change.

  1. First, thanks for reading, Williamsburg’s Finest.

    Obviously, calling Vito Lopez ‘some dude’ was done tongue-in-cheek, as is much of this article. And your points about making real change happen are all valid.

    I have nothing against these people; I’m just starting to get to know them. As time goes by, I’ll be able to get to know their work and what they’re doing for our community.

    Well, except for Al.


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