Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The easiest of elections

The Governor's race in New York, despite the back & forth attack ads between Democrat Andrew Cuomo and Tea Party-backed Republican Carl Paladino, was a foregone conclusion long before New Yorkers took to the polls this morning, and word from various news outlets confirms it.

While I have not bothered to follow election night coverage on local channels---I hardly do anymore---I let my curiosity get the best of me and I decided to check a couple of local sites, to see the result, rather than wait for the morning papers.

It turns out that New Yorkers made history today by electing Cuomo, son of former governor Mario Cuomo, as the next governor, replacing David Paterson, who opted not to seek election amid a scandal at the beginning of this year. Paladino, realistically, never had a chance despite "upsetting" luckless Rick Lazio in the primary 2 months ago. In fact, Paladino killed his chances himself by contracting foot-in-mouth disease with some of his remarks the last few weeks. That created the perception in voters' minds that Paladino, who could've passed for a lookalike of the late actor Dennis Hopper, in this writer's opinion at least, was too much of a loose cannon to be counted on to lead the state for at least 4 years.

This marks the 2nd straight election that voters chose a sitting attorney general as governor (Eliot Spitzer, now a CNN talk show co-host, was elected in 2006). Cuomo, though, wasn't the only AG to move up in rank, if you will.

Over in Connecticut, in a race that gained national attention, that state's AG, Richard Blumenthal, held off former (and likely soon to be) WWE CEO Linda McMahon, but in truth, Linda's husband, Vince, may have sunk his wife's chances with an ill-advised comedy skit last night on Monday Night Raw, in which Mr. McMahon tried to sell the audience on the idea that he's been in a coma for at least 4 months, after an on-camera beatdown in the ring. Actor Freddie Prinze, Jr. ("Scooby-Doo", "Wing Commander"), back in the employ of WWE, played the attending physician while McMahon wore a hospital gown littered with bumper stickers of his wife's campaign and a Blumenthal poster hung on his backside.

What killed that skit dead was the public knowledge that McMahon stumped for his wife at a WWE event in Hartford on Saturday afternoon, his first public appearance at a WWE event since June. Last night, McMahon jokingly suggested while in character that maybe he'd make a run for the White House in 2012 (he'll be 67 by then), but, considering his wife's defeat tonight, that plan is but a pipe dream by now.

At no time during the campaign, though, was Mrs. McMahon even considered to be a part of the Tea Party, which thus can breathe a sigh of relief.

At this rate, no matter how much the Tea Party wants to push former Alaska governor Sarah Palin, who failed in a VP bid 2 years ago, as a Presidential candidate in '12, voters would be more likely to vote in a ventriloquist dummy by then than stomach Mrs. Palin, who has become way more overexposed than any of McMahon's wrestlers combined, for 4 years.

Don't scoff at that last paragraph. It may be written in jest, but stranger things have happened, and probably will.

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