Case Closed: An Endorsement In The 11th Congressional District

Let me start off by apologizing to my many fans who called and e-mailed, with concerns about my bi-weekly “Grapevine” column-which is now way overdue. The reason for the column’s absence is that I have been brought in as part of a team of half-a-dozen political operatives, trying to steer the Kenneth Evans challenge to victory in the 40th AD, over the final 4 weeks of the primary season. I am now doing 16 to 18 hour days on this campaign. We are hoping to take out the ethically-challenged and much tainted Assemblywoman Diane Gordon; and time is very very much against us. You all can help by sending funds or volunteers, or by donating some of your own time. Call or e-mail me if you want to help in this effort.

I hope to get out another “Grapevine” column soon. Thanks for all your support and the genuine concern. Sit tight folks.

Earlier this week we were apprised of Yvette Clarke’s faux-pas. In every which way this was the big political story coming out of Brooklyn. It appears that Yvette never finished the requirements for a B.A. degree (although I must admit, that in my estimation that she is much more intelligent and articulate than many who have Doctorates); but she represented herself as having obtained one. I don’t think that she should be “tarred–and- feathered” for this (especially when you consider how close she was to finishing up the requirements), but she was wrong to lie about her credentials no matter what. It is a horrid example to set for our youngsters trying hard to stay on the “straight and narrow”. With that as a backdrop, I suggest that Yvette owes us all an unequivocal apology, and also she should withdraw from the congressional race immediately. Her credibility is shot.

She still has time to finish up her city-council tenure and at the same time her degree requirements. She can also begin a journey of rehabilitation and pay some kind of penance. In time, I think we will all forgive her ethical lapse; we are all human and we are capable of compassion.

Without further ado, let me state today that I am endorsing Chris Owens for the 11th Congressional District.

He has emerged as the best candidate for this seat at the present time. He is articulate, bright, talented, competent and capable. I believe that he has the potential to make himself a better congressman than his dad; and I consider his father to have been a “fair” congressman overall. Chris will not hurt us in any way. He has the potential to be an exceptional congressman, because he is strong and passionate about his convictions. I differ with many of his positions, and as such I would love to debate him one day, but for now he deserves his shot. I am not in favor of his gay marriage stance (since to me it’s not a right), and I think his opposition to the Ratner plan is a bit rabid (not that I support it- I don’t in its present form- but you have to agree that the area was sitting there wasting for decades and no one moved to develop it), and also probably a lil opportunistic in a political sense. Still, Chris deserves a chance here. His stand against the Iraq war is commendable; plus he has ideas, and is not afraid to offer them up for scrutiny and critique. He has been the “understudy” for this job for two decades. He is qualified beyond any reasonable doubt, and has had experience as an elected official (school board), and also in government and public policy (see his resume). His ivy-league education will be surely put to test in Washington, but I am certain that he will pass with flying colors.

I hope he wins. I urge you to vote for him.