First, challenger Gordon Boyd announced his candidacy in eight days after the New Year and a solid 11 months before the election. Supporters of incumbent Valerie Keehn responded three months later by launching a full-out frontal assault on Public Works fixture Tom McTygue, claiming him as the puppeteer pulling Boyd’s strings; Keehn herself needled the commissioner by launching her re-election campaign the same day state Environmental Conservation investigators chose to rifle through his department files.
In response to this very public infighting, the Democratic Party punished Keehn by handing their endorsement to Boyd. The Keehniacs, a minority in the party, countered this move by childishly protesting the meeting. Keehn herself appeared to be taking the high road when she asked the party to not make any decision, even though this was a thinly veiled ploy chucked out to the press as damage control after she realized she didn’t have enough supporters in the party.
And then the endorsements began.
Boyd snapped up the Independence Party nod to secure a spot on the ballot. Then he went on to peculiarly grab the Conservative Party endorsement, a move that left several left-leaning Dems wondering why a progressive candidate would seek support from a group many liberals view as regressive. But even this could be explained simply by the candidate, who has professed from the get-go he can "work across party lines.”
With the city Dems on board, Boyd really didn’t need any endorsement before the September primary. Registered Dems are very frustrated with Keehn’s buggering and seemed ready to give him the go-ahead. With this latest gag, however, Boyd has opened himself up for a well-deserved rabbit-punch from the city Republicans, who have remained quiet up until now.
“I see no reason for this group to continue to exist, let alone endorse candidates in the November elections,” Republican chairman John Herrick told the Times Union this week, while offering his candidate, Scott Johnson, as the knight in shining armor.
Then there’s Keehn’s sole endorsement. After wisely deciding not to get into the fray, the Working Families Party did an about-face and chose the incumbent as their choice. This officially makes the Democratic primary meaningless, as both Keehn and Boyd will be on the ballot anyway. More distressing is that Tom Comanzo, co-chair of the party, made the decision because decided of Keehn’s “strong support for the WFP's issue agenda.”
This agenda must involve back-biting, creating a fetid atmosphere in City Hall and accomplishing absolutely nothing while in office. In fact, if there was one group that has perpetually lost under Keehn, it would be working families, as few there are sparsely few members of the proletariat can afford to live in Saratoga anymore and certainly not in the city proper.
Contrary to the incessant cyber-trash Keehn’s dwindling supporters pollute over the Internet, there is no clear winner in this race. In contrast, there are bound to be some losers. When the ballots are counted in November, there will be roughly 32,000 losers, namely the people who get nothing but a headache from the bickering and dickering between these plutocrats.