Thursday, October 05, 2006

The New York Republican Massacre 2006, Pt.2: PIRRO VS. CUOMO

Memo to Jeanine Pirro: All Publicity is Not Good Publicity

I mentioned in an earler post how weak the slate of Republican candidates in New York is this year. HOW WEAK, you ask? Well, our highest-profile candidate is Jeanine Pirro, who already dropped out of the Senate race to run for Attorney General. I liked her as a prosecutor, and she is more qualified than her opponent, Mr. Cuomo (son of former Gov. Mario Cuomo). However, she is "high profile" for all of the wrong reasons.

Mrs. Pirro's spouse makes "slick Willie" look like an angel, being a convicted criminal. Still, if all of those NY "Clinton" voters really believe that a spouse's (or spousal) problems shouldn't be campaign fodder, she might have a chance. She is running closer to Cuomo than any other statewide Republican, which says volumes about his popularity in NYS.

I wish she had stayed in the Senate race, to be honest. All of the stuff they could throw at her about her hubby Al would be deflected by comparisons to Bill's philandering and impeachment, as well as Hillary's own scandals (Rose law firm billing records, cattlegate, etc...). It might not be as big an issue.

She is a fighter, and has come out swinging over the latest developments. This is complicated, so try to follow: While the FBI was "bugging" disgraced former NYPD head Bernie Kerik, who was then a private investigator working at Giuliani Partners, Mrs. Pirro was overheard asking Kerik to install a "bug" on her husband's boat, to find out if he was cheating. It was never done, and she claims that it wouldn't be a crime had it been done, under a "spousal property" rule. I don't know the NYS law on that, but I'll give her the benefit of the doubt.

The leak of the tape, however, is of deep concern to me, as a voter. Smear tactics are all too common in today's politics. At least she is fighting back against them, but bringing more scrutiny on herself, as the NY Times points out :

Federal prosecutors have issued a subpoena for copies of financial
disclosure statements filed by Jeanine F. Pirro, the Republican candidate for
state attorney general, from 1998 to 2005, when she was the Westchester County
district attorney, a person familiar with the subpoena said yesterday.

Paul Shechtman, Ms. Pirro's lawyer, said, "In my conversations with the
government, they have given no indication that the investigation involves
anything else than Jeanine's talking about eavesdropping."

He added, "The only thing that I can guess is that the financial disclosure
statements are being sought to ascertain whether Jeanine claimed an ownership
interest in the boat."

Let's hope the feds can find where the leak of the tape came from as fast as they're trying to find out if Mrs. Pirro solicited a criminal act. For the record, I'm going to hold my nose as I vote for her, and hope there's nothing more there.

That's this conservative's view of the NYS Attorney General's race, at this point.

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