In a lot of cities across America, local elections will happen this November. Democrat’s, Republicans, and other established Parties will spend the summer month’s at barbeque’s and other assorted fundraisers in search of campaign dollars for the November election. In Albany however, the election occurs in September. That’s right, folks, September. That’s because September is the month that Albany holds it’s primary election. There will be no Republican’s, no Independents, no other party but Democrat’s. That’s the way things have been done in this town for a long, long time. There still is an election in November, where you get to go to the voting place and pull that lever — there aren’t any levers anymore, but you get the point — for the Democrat of your choice. Heck in the old day’s, when they had levers, literally, a blind person could go into the booth and vote by pulling the levers, because the Democrat’s were all in the same row. There might be a Republican challenger for city offices like the Mayor, Auditor, or Treasurer, but that is mostly symbolic. To this date no Republican has come forth to challenge any of the Democrat’s running for these offices. As far as the Common Council races are concerned — and there are 15 of them — there won’t be a Republican within 20 miles of the ballot. Some of these races will be interesting. For instance, there are a couple of the Ward Representatives who have already committed to not running for re-election (those being the 1st and 4th Wards.) At this time there are 2 signed up to primary in each. The winner in each of those contests will be the one who has been endorsed by the incumbent. An incumbent (2nd Ward), is being challenged, and the challenger has the endorsement of the Common Council President, with the inevitable winner being the challenger. See, in this town the politico’s have very long memories. Even if you stand up for what is right, you are wrong. This was a redistricting year for the city and we have people running in a certain Wards who don’t even live in that Ward. I don’t know about you, but I have lived in my house for 13 years, and I guess you’d have to have a real passion to be a civil servant to pick up and move. Now it’s funny that all the races so far with primary challenges are in the predominately Minority Wards. I guess the representatives of the 10th,12th,13th, 14th, or 15th Wards are just doing such a darned good job, that potential challengers feel that it would be futile to run. I live in the 15th Ward, and challenging the incumbent here would be akin to winning Powerball. I have been a citizen of this city for most of my life, and if it seems that I’m down on Albany, that’s just not the case. What I am down on is the way the city elects it’s officials. If you don’t succeed in September, you go home. If you don’t succeed on winning the endorsement of the Democratic Party, you go home. We have too many individuals governing too few people. The members of the Common Council vote as a group to govern the city, but the interests of the different Wards are like night and day. Are these representatives as a group focusing on the good of the city as a whole? I guess we’ll see in September.
And that is “The Daily Take”