Les Roberts wrote a letter to me and all I got was annoyed.

It is annoying enough when it’s the Republicans that treat me like an idiot, but now a “fellow Democrat” is doing it too. What’s that saying about “friends like these”?

Saturday, I received a letter from Congressional candidate Les Roberts who’s running in the NY 24th. I’m a member of the Oneida County Democratic Committee. Now, it’s no secret that I’m supporting Michael Arcuri. But I do think that political discussions are important and there is value in different people coming forth with ideas and opinions. But this is a challenging election in a pretty red part of the state with a 12th term incumbent. Experience, integrity and leadership, I feel, is what will make the difference this year.

Les Roberts, even should he become the endorsed Democratic candidate, will not get my support because of the letter I received from him. At best, he does not understand the political process. And if a person can’t take the time to learn the process he is stepping into, I doubt he would be able to learn quickly enough to be an effective Representative for the one term he’d be elected for. If he doesn’t take the time, he’s not ready.

Roberts starts his letter by informing me of a “straw poll” being held by the Oneida County Democratic Committee on Tuesday, March 2nd. I work at a college and write a monthly column in a newspaper and I know how important proof reading is. And I also know that some things do slip through, so the error of the day-date I can live with.

But for a candidate screening by the Executive Committee before they make their recommendation to the general Committee as required by our bylaws to be tagged a “straw poll” trivializes the task the Committee has of endorsing the best candidate and ignores the importance of his involvement. Besides which… I don’t serve on the County Executive Committee, so I have no vote to cast in any direction. At least I understand the process the Committee must follow. Roberts’ statement could be taken by someone unfamiliar with our bylaws to imply exclusion and hijacking as most of the people who received the letter would not have known about or been able to attend the screening.

Then there’s this sentence in the letter:
“I am fortunate enough to have a supporter who is a political fundraiser in Congressman Rahm Emanuel’s
(Chair of the DCCC) Congressional District and is hosting a fundraiser for me this weekend”

For no valid reason, I’ll share with you that I am fortunate enough to have a friend I’ve known her entire life who is an artist in Congressman Rahm Emanuel’s (Chair DCCC) Congressional District and who has sent me artwork and poetry for over 20 years. I don’t know if she knows Emanuel, but I don’t him, have never met him and he hasn’t endorsed me or my friend for anything (at least not that I know of).

Sorry, Les. Both working brain cells read your sentence and unfortunately for you, I understood it for what it was.

He also invited me to look at the events listed on his website. But looking beyond just that link also showed more worrisome problems. A stated strength of his candidacy is his research and scientific background. The one concern the website raises that I’ll point to now is the lying by omission in referring to a web poll conducted by WKRT out of Cortland. Granted, the blog entry is written by Josh Lozeman, but it’s on the Official Campaign site. He writes:
“It is – of course – always wonderful for any campaign to see a poll showing them in the lead. It is even

Then he invites readers to look at the radio station’s site with the actual poll. I clicked on the link and found yes, Roberts is just 4 points behind Sherwood Boehlert. But neither is in the lead.

Yes, it is wonderful to see the candidate I’m supporting in the lead. The breakdown, as of February 27, 2006, 9:30PM is:
Sherwood Boehlert – 25%
Brad Jones - 12%
Les Roberts - 21%
Bruce Tytler - 5%
Mike Arcuri - 37%

I’ve been an active County Committeemember for 14 years, so I’m hoping that these serious errors in the Roberts letter are due to inexperience and ignorance. I’ve worked on a previous Congressional race and know that those two aspects alone can implode a campaign before the Republicans do anything.

Too much is at stake this year to start that much in the deficit.


Anonymous said...

hehehe - Roberts was in the lead until the Arcuri supporters got on the stick. Robert's campaign may have written that letter while he was in the lead.

What you point out, whether you know it or not, is that Robert's campaign does not have a professional campaign manager who has been involved in other Congressional campaigns.

Now, is Arcuri going to have a professional campaign manager or just pick another local buddy? These are the big leagues, not the minors.

Because the real question is whether or not ANY of the democrats are going to run a credible campaign or just waste the best opportunity in a couple of decades.

So is Arcuri going with an (in or out of district) pro or not?

maimun said...

Hello, anonymous.
Among your comments, you asked me one question twice. I'm not going to speak for Arcuri for Congress, much less be so presumptive on my own site, so I respectfully decline to answer.

J. Clifford said...

Hm. What is Michael Arcuri's position on abortion?

Anonymous said...

I met some of the Les Roberts team at an event the other day. Based on this blog posting, I asked them about their campaign experience. Three of his staffers have experience on past Congressional races, and two have worked on Presidential campaigns. They told me they've hired two experienced DC firms for fundraising and consulting and said they would be releasing a full staffing and consultants list with bios after this next filing (?? - don't know what that means, but I was sort of embarassed to ask).

Can anyone report as to what Arcuri's staff looks like today?

maimun said...

Anonymous with the campaign experience question, thanks for asking your question the way you asked it.

Hey, if I ever say something that you don't understand, please let me know. As much as the vocabulary specific to an industry makes the communications easier, it also risks leaving people out. I assume that they were referring to the financial filing deadline that campaigns have to report to the FEC right about now. All the campaigns are pretty much scratching together every penny and the documentation needed before the deadline.

Mike's campaign has a lot of campaigning experience in the team. Working off my memory, we have the coordinator of 3 local presidential campaigns, 5 who served on congressional campaign's management, 1 local Senate campaign coordinator,and numerous other regional campaigns managers or chairs. We have a DC consulting firm with roots in central NY, a professional political fundraiser and we're interviewing for a professional campaign manager.

This is actually the best team I've ever seen in politics, but especially for this Congressional seat.

And it's been gaining attention... The fundraiser on the 23rd had over 400 people, raised over $50,000 and seems to have been the place to be seen. Then the following week, Mike spoke at a filled room at Hamilton College.

YouGoMike said...

Well I personally could never support any candidate who allows his supporters to deliberately attempt to work the google system and use cross-blogs to spread lies, rumors and innuendoes about a candidate who seriously threatens his ability to win a primary. If you can't beat 'em, might as well slime 'em and see if any of it sticks. That's the philosophy of the weak. Apparently, either Roberts thinks this behavior is just fine, or....he is painfully internet-ignorant and hasn't got a clue what his supporters are up to. I personally know Mike Arcuri to be a good and honorable man and I resent it. I shouldn't bother resenting this behavior though, because it won't work in the end anyways. These things always reflect on the candidate.