Carlucci Under Pressure From Local Democrats
As first reported by The Rockland County Times and amplified this morning from the tireless Jon Campbell at Gannett, IDC Sen. David Carlucci is feeling some heat from Rockland County Democrats over his decision to be a part of a coalition with the Senate Republicans.
The letter, written last month and before the 46th Senate District race was decided in favor of Democrat Cecilia Tkaczyk, notes that a victory in the race would mean a clear numerical majority for Democrats in chamber.
Republicans have 30 seats; Democrats have 33, though Brooklyn Sen. Simcha Felder is a member of the Senate GOP conference.
In short, the Rockland Conuty Democrats feel that they’re efforts to get him elected went nowhere after he joined the IDC. They write he “blindsided” them with the move to the breakaway conference.
Last week, even before all of the races have been decided, you made this decision to side with the Republican caucus. If Cecilia Tkaczyk wins, and we hope she does, there will be more Senators will Ds next to their names than Rs; you have shown us that the D next to your name means nothing. You won’t even give your fellow Senate Democrats a chance; the same Senate Democrats that sent resources and money to get you elected.
The Rockland County Democratic committee is chaired by Kristen Stavisky, whose husband is Evan Stavisky, a partner at the consulting firm Parkside Group, which has close ties to the mainline Democratic conference.
It’s not that Carlucci, or any of the Democrats in the five-member IDC, faced a difficult challenge this past election season (The conference’s leader, Sen. Jeff Klein, even ran on the Republican line).
Carlucci, too, was able to defeat a well-known Republican, County Executive Scott Vanderhoef, in a district that had been in GOP hands when he first ran in 2010 as a perceived underdog.
Throughout it all, the IDC lawmakers, which include Sens. Diane Savino, Malcolm Smith and David Valesky have maintained they are true Democrats, if not legislators more attuned to a popular governor’s agenda.
The coalition did face an early test in the form of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s gun control law, which ultimately passed the coalitioned-governed Senate, an unimaginable scenario if Republicans had been in charge.
But another test is on the horizon, or so it would seem: Cuomo is trying to pass a package of women’s equality bills, including an expansion of reproductive rights.
Though Democrats in the mainline conference may not have enough votes to pass the bill, even holding a vote may be a bridge too far for the Senate Republicans, who are certainly going to be facing pressure from a restive base over the gun control law.
And another coda to the Senate coalition was Democratic Sen. James Sanders turning down a committee chairmanship late last night after being offered the top post of the Senate Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Committee.
Whether any challenges to the IDC’s left will come about is far too early to tell in 2013, more than a year before legislative races become serious.
But it’s an important note to consider when we look at this new coalition government in the chamber and pitfalls of bipartisanship.
|Print article||This entry was posted by Nick Reisman on January 25, 2013 at 11:19 am, and is filed under Democrats. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.|