Tuesday, August 10, 2010

SD-46: A Three-Ring Circus No More

Tim Carney is Knocked Off the Ballot for Invalid Signatures
Luke Martland Stands Alone in Challenge to Incumbent Sen. Neil Breslin

In early spring, Albany resident Tim Carney created two websites. The first was called timcarneyforassembly. The other was called timcarneyforsenate. Then, an Albany attorney named Luke Martland announced that he would challenge Senator Neil Breslin in a Democratic primary for sure. Carney's Assembly website dissappeared, and soon the local blogs were full of his wild assertations that he would win a three-way race against the 15-year incumbent with over $450K and his first well-funded Democratic challenger, Martland.

In the months between then and now, Carney lived up to his name, and gave me every reason to believe that his campaign for Senate would fail. We saw him post comical YouTube videos that nobody could take serious, and even his "official" campaign announcement was a grade B political stunt. And while I'd love to share them with you for pure entertainment value, I feel I really should just hang on to those crazy e-mails Carney sent me when he didn't like me sharing my opinion that his campaign was, well, a joke.

As of this Friday, it isn't a joke anymore. It's history. The Times Union is reporting that Tim Carney has been removed from the ballot. While Carney was able to survive an initial challenge to his nominating petitions a week ago, this time the Martland campaign sued in State Supreme Court for a second review, and the ruling left Carney short...by two signatures.

Head on over to the TU article to see Carney lose it if you like. For the length of the time I've been watching this, I've known the real race was between Luke Martland and Neil Breslin, despite the overwhelming odds Martland may face. From the beginning, Tim Carney's campaign has been a sideshow, an example of what can happen in any district when an opportunistic, unqualified noise-maker decides they have what it takes to run for high office. Such campaigns are useful only for entertainment value so long as things end up like this. Had Carney remained on the ballot, he would have split the vote of those who want progressive reform in this district. Now that he's off, things can return to where they should have been all along: a serious challenge between a powerful incumbent with both big money and the family political machine on his side...against an energetic new voice with naught but the courage of his convictions and just enough resources to get it done. Stay tuned for more as this two-way race develops.

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