Monday, January 08, 2007

The Union Question

Liz Benjamin Capitol Confidential

Liz raises some interesting points on how the "unions" will go in this upcoming special election to replace Balboni.....but...from a "long island" perspective..the unions are tight with the dems here on the "island" and so is the "working families" party.....nobody but nobody wants to get on the wrong side of Spitzer/NYS Dems right now........from what I am hearing both groups are a "lock" for the dems....stay tuned..............andy

"The biggest unknown in the 7th SD special election is: What will SEIU/1199 do?
The healthcare giant has long been a mega-supporter of the GOP Senate majority, and it isn’t too happy with Gov. Eliot Spitzer these days, either.
By that standard, it seems likely that 1199 would come down on the side of the Republican candidate, Nassau County Clerk Maureen O’Connell.
Officially speaking, however, the union has made “no decision yet” as to its course of action on Long Island over the next month, according to its Executive Vice President Jennifer Cunningham.
Union support in this race could be crucial. Given the rapid turnaround and slight Democratic enrollment edge in the 7th SD, the grassroots GOTV effort could be the deciding factor here, and few groups pull people to the polls better than a union the size of 1199.
As for the union-backed Working Families Party, which was among the first to endorse Spitzer for governor and is often seen as a natural ally of the Democratic Party, WFP Co-Chair Bob Master said the Nassau County chapter will be interviewing candidates tomorrow night and then making a recommendation to the executive committee.
The WFP has been known to endorse a Republican or two. It backed former state Sen. Nick Spano, R-Yonkers, in the 2004 election, for example, but then stayed neutral in this year’s race, which he lost to Democrat Andrea Stewart-Cousins.
I asked Master if it was possible that the WFP might buck what appears to be the trend from on-high to support Nassau County Legislator Craig Johnson in the 7th SD, and he replied:
“I’m going to let the process take its due course.”
The WFP plans to be “very active” in this race, Master said, as the party considers the Senate “very important.” A final endorsement decision should be made in the next few days, he said, since the time frame here is so short. "

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