Maybe It’s Because the “Bench is Weak” Right Now?
You can’t ignore the fact that the ranks of the Monroe County Democrats are re-shuffling as we speak. Since the 2008 election cycle we’ve seen Mayor Duffy go to Albany, D.A. Green recently joined him albeit not as his first choice in jobs, longtime Assemblyman David Koon was defeated in 2010, longtime Brighton Supervisor Sandra Frankel is now retired, they’ve lost seats in the county legislature, and control only one supervisor’s chair (Brighton) in the county.
Sure newcomers have emerged, most notably in the form of Mayor Tom Richards and D.A. Sandra Doorley who could become tomorrow’s party superstars. Democrats do field a strong cast of City Councilmember’s who are developing decent name recognition in the county but I’m also not seeing them seriously think about running for other offices yet. I’m curious to see how Chairman Morelle rebuilds or reloads (whichever you prefer) in the coming year because a full slate of strong candidates in 2014 is the least any party loyalist (Democrat or Republican) should expect.
*NOTE: David Koon is challenging Assemblyman Mark Johns this fall in the hopes of winning back his old seat; it is another rematch worth following.
Or Maybe This is Morelle’s Last Cycle as Party Chair?
If you hadn’t heard, MCDC Chair and Assemblyman Joe Morelle is atop the short list for the NYS Assembly Majority position in Albany. A decision by Speaker Sheldon Silver will likely be made in January and one has to wonder if Morelle’s tapped for this job will it mean the end of his party chairmanship run?
The new job will surely bring added responsibilities and tasks, none of which have anything to do with seeking out County Clerk, Town Board, or City Council candidates. One school of thought could be that his elevated rank in Albany would bring added notoriety (aka: fundraising dollars & big-wig visits) to the local Democratic Party and being relieved of Assembly committee duties may make striking that balance achievable.
Another school of thought could be that this is his last election cycle as chairman and by early 2013 a debate over who will replace him is filling space in this column.
As an aside, since the departure of the late Steve Minarik I’ve heard no complaints on the GOP side of things when it comes to Chairman Bill Reilich’s performance. While his name could be floated as a County Executive candidate should Maggie Brooks win her Congressional race I suspect that Reilich will remain the party chairman for many years to come.