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Oh, SmAlbany!

Daily posts and occasional longer essays about politics, culture, and life in the Capital Region...updated M-F, midmorning


"I write this not as a booster of Albany, which I am, nor an apologist for the city, which I sometimes am, but rather as a person whose imagination has become fused with a single place, and in that place finds all the elements that a man ever needs..." -W. Kennedy, from O Albany!

Jennings gets SEIU 1199

Mayor Jennings picked up the endoresement of a labor union yesterday in his bid for re-election:
Service Employees International Union/Local 1199, which represents 250,000 health care workers, and its political powerhouse of a leader, Dennis Rivera, also hosted a fund-raiser for Jennings at the the union's Washington Avenue headquarters.

Rivera said Jennings was committed to "economic development, quality health care and Albany's youth and working families."

Let's first review the situation for readers not up to speed.

We're just about 4 months to the day from the Democratic primary - the election - for mayor in the city of Albany. Jerry Jennings is the incumbent and representative of the establishment political machine. In the wake of David Soares' grass-roots campaign victory against the machine in last year's county DA Democratic primary, a number of anti-machine reform candidates have emerged to challenge Jennings for the top city job. A poweful coaltion of African-Americans activits and uptown progressives has formed, and it has certainly altered almost a century of city politics in a very short time span. Backed by the Working Families Party and other well-organized outfits, the coalition will only get stronger over time.

Well then. It's not at all clear to me if Jennings is in trouble this fall or how serious his trouble might be. Obviously, Soares' victory last November has created a buzz about the plausibility of a coalition that could unseat the machine in the Democratic primary for any office, top to bottom. And I think Jennings is definitely worried about it. However, Jennings isn't Paul Clyne. He'll be a much bigger fish to bring down. He's got more money, more chits to call in, and he's generally more shrewd - and probably more ruthless. His political power is going to line up endorsement after endorsement from groups like SEIU.

Will Archie Goodbie or Benzine Johnson be the candidate that brought down the machine? I'm doubtfull right now. But it is clear that the machine is running scared, and its opponents have finally tapped into the electoral force that will eventually produce victory. If not this year, eventually. 2009? 2013? Who knows. But it will happen.

Anyone else think David Soares is destined to be mayor of Albany?
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At 2:10 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said:

Soares for mayor? Doubtful. I think his ambition burns brighter than that.    



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