The Hezitorial: The Voters Have Spoken By HEZI ARIS

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Ehezi_charicature The votes were cast on September 13, 2011, on Primary Election Day. Depending on where one resides, the opportunity of party ward and district leaders to cast their vote in their respective party, were it the Democrat, Republican, Conservative, Independence, or some other party, was cast. The political backdrop has been raucous, driven by the divide separating the electorate from the elected, the strife and dismay over deteriorating job prospects, a sense of political impotence; or so has the milieu within which we reside been distilled by media and pundits alike. Who are we to believe the pundits and / or media, or the vote count?

Has the vitriol heard among the political discourse, such as it is, driven the votes cast with respect to one of the lowest voter turnout in Westchester County? What cajoled the votes to be cast? At a time of international posturing, foreign national interests taking stances of self-interest, the states among America strapped for cash and saddled with mandates often not funded by federal dictate and law, and our county supposedly screaming for resolution to the taxes paid, mind you, the highest in the nation,  what drives us to say one thing and yet in juxtaposition not reflect our espoused issues and concerns by the votes we have cast?

There are many cities, towns, villages, and / or hamlets that fall within the borders of Westchester County. Some may attest to government responding well to the electorate. Such communities will attest and extol the virtues of governance among its elected officials and its residents. One such community is the Village of Bronxville, governed by Mayor Mary C. Marvin and Administrator Harold Porr III. The patina of governance under their umbrella has exemplified excellence through times of challenge and need and times less so demanding. They have each striven to work together in deference to The People who entrusted them their vote. The results are proof of their conduct and resolve to serve the constituents to the best of their ability. The stellar aspect of governance with them at the helm has been their savvy to maneuver the village to safe haven. Their intellectual prowess, experience and awareness of their personal strengths, self-awareness, a constrained ego maintains them in office and sustains the viability of Bronxville.

Juxtaposed to the Village of Bronxville are the Cities of Mount Vernon and Yonkers. The populations of each differ greatly. Bronxville is comprised of less than 8,000 residents, Mount Vernon can count approximately 70,000 people within its borders, and Yonkers counts approximately 200,000 residents. Bronxville is a much wealthier community than are Mount Vernon and Yonkers. The economic constraints and challenges that have exacted a heavy toll on savings and accumulated wealth of those who have as opposed to those who had little has exposed the precarious situation that is suffered, often unseen and under reported, in communities challenged in meeting the needs of their communities.

Sixteen years ago, Mount Vernon Mayor Ernest Davis took the helm of a city plagued with crime, an infrastructure in decay, no development, graft, and declining educational excellence. Over the next twelve years Mayor David created a vision of development along Sandford Boulevard extrapolated from his engineering renderings, and sold the concept of development with Mount Vernon as the venue> The imprint on Sandford Boulevard today is testimony to the legacy he left behind. Four years on, Mayor Ernest Davis is the “Comeback Kid,” having garnered one hundred plus votes more than cast for Comptroller Maureen Walker in the Mount Vernon Democrat Primary Election.

Both Mr Davis and Ms Walker exemplify an earnest love for the City of MountVernon and a recognition that they must serve Mount Vernonites if Mount Vernon is to evolve and thrive beyond these challenging times.

The City of Yonkers saw many upsets. John Murtagh eclipsed the ho-hum campaign efforts of Richard Martinelli in the Republican Primary Election. Carlo Calvin exceeded initially conjectured prospects but remained a distant third place finisher. Among the three, Mr Murtagh, as polished as he may be in a court of law, has yet to refrain and restrain his often ill-tempered and combative tone and demeanor. These three will meet each other as the next challenge is in winning the General Election of November 8, 2011. Mr Mutagh name will be found under the Republican line, Mr Cali, under the Independence Party line, Mr Martinelli under the Conservative Party line.

Among the Democrat field, Mike Spano devoured the opposition, eclipsing the efforts of Chuck Lesnick and Bob Flower. Mr Spano will be ascribed on the Democrat Party line. The Westchester Guardian / Yonkers Tribune have concluded the likely accession of Mike Spano onto the Conservative Party line, and even the Working Family Line.

The Conservative Party Primary was a write-in challenge that found Mssrs. Calvi, Murtagh, and Spano challenging for prominence.

The Working Family Party, after place-holder Evan Inlaw, Esq., relinquishes his hold on the line by the offer of a nomination to judge to serve the Yonkers City Court, is seen by The Westchester Guardian / Yonkers Tribune to approach Mr Spano to carry the party designation.

The mayor race in Yonkers saw Carlo Calvi on the Republican side and Bob Flower on the Democrat side each defining and delineating many thoughtful and doable recommendations worthy of attention and incorporation by the future mayor of the City of Yonkers. Their efforts did not win the majority of voters. Chuck Lesnick, present Yonkers City Council President, and Richar Martinelli, the Yonkers City Council President defeated after one term in office by Mr Lesnick, did not garner support of the electorate, this, despite the prognostications by some pundits in media. Mr Lesnick will have time to lick his wounds over the last two years of his tenure as president of the Yonkers City Council. Mr Martinelli will be able to successfully recoil to his printing and publishing business unlikely to return to the political arena.

The most prominent vote getter in the Democrat Primary Election was Mike Spano. He exemplified hope to the voter. The litany of diatribes and innuendo and hate cast about Mr Spano’s family did not overwhelm the basis for Mr Spano’s election win. In measuring each candidate, the most approachable candidate for mayor was judged to be Mike Spano. Not only approachable, Yonkersites judged Mr Spano someone they could speak to and be heard.

Mr Spano has shown himself to be even tempered, mellow if you will. The voters desired someone they believe to be approachable; someone they believe will listen to their wants and needs.

Before and after the election, there is not likely to be one Yonkersite who did not  or will not wonder about former Senator Nick Spano’s influence over the mayoralty of the City of Yonkers should his younger brother, Mike Spano, be given voter approval in the general election. No one has an answer to what will be. What can be said is that Mike Spano’s imprint upon his campaign effort has Mike Spano written over it, though some will assert the opposite. The commentary from any side will not diminish the final vote count. If it is Mike Spano, or another, the person voted to become mayor cannot help but reveal who he his by the demeanor and acumen of his governance.

Every Yonkersite knows that Yonkers needs a leader who can lead by inclusion of all people within our borders, who will nurture economic development that will sustain and relieve the taxpayer base; focus on the growing gang violence, create jobs, and set a civil tone of team-like precision among those we employ.

2011 may be a time of experiment for the voters who have come to recognize the failed promises and avarice of those elected to office in the past. The experiment may fail, but it may also succeed. Perhaps we must each resolve to do our best for our community in order for the people we elect to know we are concerned about their success and that their only focus must be toward the public good.  

Time will prove what will be appropriate and correct for Mount Vernon and for  Yonkers.

The voters have spoken. They will speak again in the general election.

Hezi Aris serves as the editor of The Westchester Guardian, the publisher / editor of the Yonkers Tribune, and the host of the BlogTalkRadio platform called Westchester On the Level.

 

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eHeziThe Hezitorial: The Voters Have Spoken By HEZI ARIS

Comments 50

  1. Ok, we’re convinced now that Murtaugh is a nice guy, even though every time he opens his mouth some condescending, arrogant, rude, ignorant garbage pours out.
    Face it, Murtaughe made a ton of enemies during the primary. He can never recapture that vote.
    Put on top of that, the fact that the votes which the Spanos gave him in the primary (they nominated him and gave him primary win because they know he’s the easiest for Mikey boy to beat) will be taken away, and that knucklehead could come in third.
    The guy could possibly be dumber than Mike Spano.

  2. News 12 you are an idiot.
    First his name is spelled Murtagh.
    Second he only sent one negative mailer against Calvi.
    Nothing has been sent about Nick Spano – yet. That mailer could be the size of War and Peace.
    In terms of Rich Martinelli – he got what he deserved. Any opponent would have gone after him. He ran a weak campaign and received poor advice from Carrot Top.

  3. What “support” are you talking about. Lets hear it. Any person can “support” any candidate they want. Nothing illegal about it. If Fox supports Murtagh it certainly did not do any good, as Restiano gave the Conservative endorsement to Martinelli.
    So who cares?

  4. It is so interesting to me that a few on this blog talk about bobble head Murtagh like he will do so good. Lets all not forget that Murtagh is supported by Hugh Fox because astorino told him thats what he has to do. Murtagh talks a good game about ethics and pension reform but accepts support from one of the biggest abusers of the pension system that this city has ever seen.
    Fox —-
    94,132.000 Pension
    +98,281.000 Salary from astorino (political pay back)
    =192,413.000
    thats right this retired firefighter is making 192,000 off us the taxpayer!!!!

  5. When was Murtagh nasty about Carlo and his family?
    Sure, he made a wisecrack about Calvi popping up every few years, but that was about it.
    Murtagh hit Martinelli hard in the Primary, but otherwise he didn’t go after Carlo.
    Martinelli, on the other hand, ran a vicious campaign against Carlo, dragging him and his family through court in July and August, trying to smear their names and publicly questioning their honor and integrity.

  6. and furthermore Carl Calvi shouldnt know try to use John Murtagh as an excuse for being the same whore as his cohorts.Hes just upset that he came in a distant third behind rich martinelli and thats pretty bad in of in itself!!!!

  7. Thank for the above comment Dylama, but guess what? Murtagh doesn’t need you or the fake dr!! both you and cavallow are political whores that no one trusts and once again you both will be on the outside looking in. hope the view is good from the cheap seats morons. You once again have made the wrong move!!!!!

  8. if murtaugh wasnt so nasty about carlo and his family as qwll as dhalma and doc he night be in better shape. his nastiness will bite him again.

  9. ATT: News 12–You need to read a local map, Scarsdale does not border on Yonkers next to the Brendon Hill Rd murder/suicide story as you incorrectly reported. The Town of Greenburgh borders next to it, not Scarsdale.
    Yonkers Accuracy in Media

  10. if calvi stays in the race (he is an atty and
    can get a judicial nomination from the IND party
    and they can then cross endorse either spano or
    murtaugh) the results will be as follows
    SPANO 54%
    MURTAUGH 40%
    CALVI 6%

  11. anon2
    It would be wonderful if all Reublicans were rich and all Democrats were average hard working people who struggle every day.
    Know what? If that were true everyone would be a Republican?
    Sounds pretty dumb, doesnt it. Just like your assertion. This has nothing to do with pitting classes against each other. It is simply recognizing that the current union model simply does not work any more, and the average citizen, Democrat or Republican can no longer afford to pay for the contracts. This is not just a Yonkers issue, it is state wide. Every one knows it, it has been discussed many times. The reality is you need to be able to take a tough stand, especially when the unions are unwilling to move. What other choice is there. So you get demonized, but unfortunately it has to be done. Castor oil was never fun.

  12. Murtagh has raised taxes 80 percent since hes been in office running this city into the disaster its in. murtagh also voted for every union contract that he now runs from. MurtAGH shld run in bronxville but in yonkers its not happening Mike crushes him. Mike may beat him among republicans and crush him among dems. Murtagh has no respect for anyone which is why we had garbage pilledmup all over our city cause he doesnt know how to treat people.

  13. I get it….pit middle class workers against each other while the elite continue to prosper. There aren’t too many Republicans worried about the monthly bills like the average Democrat. Republicans are worried about their large 401ks that have become 101ks thanks to wall st sharks. Too bad! That’s were the vote will be decided. Yonkers is much more Democratic than Republican and that’s how the vote will come down.

  14. Oh please! Your whole comment was utter nonsense. The unions haven’t had a raise in 3 years and they all pay for healthcare…The NYS pension isn’t in any financial trouble and what restrictive work rules are u refering to? No facts to back up anything u said. Just hating.
    And union members are city residents too pal, and they have a right to defend themselves against jobless, blogging douches who stay up all night bashing them with zero facts to back it up.

  15. you are dreaming jack…not gonna happen..
    calvi will drain votes from the democratic line
    and if spano has the consv line he may even break
    60%

  16. “Congressman Eliot Engel (D-NY-17) voted against a House Republican bill stripping the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) of its power and setting back labor relations to a time before the Second World War.”
    This is a perfect example of why Pro-Union liberal Spano Democrats are wrong for Yonkers. Their focus is pro-worker and anti-business, and the result is huge pension costs and costly restrictive work rules that the hardworking citizens of Yonkers have to pay for out of their shrinking non-union paychecks.
    Why should our Citizens, who do not enjoy outrageous union benefits including health care, fat pensions, overtime, raises and more have to continue to pay more and more for these boondoggles when they are increasingly finding it hard just to put food on the table?
    Even worse, union members come onto Yonkers Tribune and make fun of residents and basically say ‘we have a contract, go F yourself.’
    Tell that to people you have to decide between the mortgage and food, and have no union to support them. There are a LOT of people in Yonkers in that boat.
    Elliott Engel should be ashamed of himself for supporting a union stranglhold that perpetuates these outrageous expenses foisted on local residents.
    The liberal Spano Democrat has stabbed us in the back yet again.

  17. Yes, I for one am very worried about the Spanos. Mike is a nice guy, running a nice guy campaign. But mike is simply a placeholder for Nick. Nick is the real power in the family, and he is NOT a nice guy.
    The Spano patronage mill has been running for decades, and it is not likely to stop January 1. This is Nicks big (and probably last) chance to to be the big player.
    So Mike just has to be nice, have beer and wieenie roasts on Monday night football and look all cuddly. Meanwhile Murtagh is painted as mean and evil because he points out the truth about the Spanos, our unions and the many other Yonkers boondoggles.
    Well if that is evil I am all for it. It is far more important to keep hearing a steady diet of that than beer and weenies.

  18. Like I keep saying, Murtagh did nothing but pontificate for eight years. Coasted through his 2007 reelection without ever challenging a union re givebacks, or contractual terms (upon which he voted, I might add). Now, as a lame duck, he is taking on the world. I don’t subscribe to the “better the devil I know” school of thought. If I KNOW you’re a devil, I would rather take a chance on someone else. Both Murtagh and Lesnick have significant city council baggage, but Murtagh was clearly the evil one. People afraid of Spanoville should know that there ISN’T ANY MONEY IN YONKERS. We are on the verge of a control board, in case anyone hasn’t been paying attention to our dirty fiscal house. But, as an FYI, Murtagh claimed he wanted to continue the work of Mayor Amicone during his mayoral announcement run. Do I have to remind you of all the political hacks still on the Yonkers payroll? And you’re worried about the Spanos?

  19. I agree with Hezi. Amazingly, despite all we know is bad within the world of Spano Incorporated, Mike Spano has run a good campaign and everyone else hasn’t.
    It is what it is and nothing changes the fact that neither Republicans nor Democrats had been organized enough to beat him. Blame Phil Amicone, if anyone is to be blamed — and blame all the fence sitters who watched this parade go by.
    Yonkers gets what it deserves. Now Mikey has to show he can lead without any of his brothers holding his hand. I hope we’re all surprised.

  20. no more actors but all 9/11 heroes will be getting
    there share of the payout which would not have occurred
    without the “slimy lawyers”…that’s right there
    would be no money for them at all…nada..but now
    they are being compensated…after a 10 year fight
    and payment of defense legal fees in the amount of
    210 million dollars….money that could have gone
    to pay those who responded

  21. Oh I get it Edelman. I get the fact that you’re a slimy ambulance chasing sorry excuse for a contributing member of society. Any more phony actors portraying firemen in your 9/11 ads?

  22. Yes
    Yours is the typical response of someone who does not get it. Lots of bad things were done 5-10 years ago. That includes union contracts that were badly written with no thought for the future. You have benefited well for the past few years from very generous contracts.
    Now the economy sucks. Everyone, from prince to pauper has to tighten their belt to survive. But it is obvious from your post that you do not think this applies to you, that you have some right above everyone else.
    Well pal, I am sorry to burst your bubble, you do not. It is time for you to sit down with the city, open your contracts and start making real cuts, and join the recession party. You keep jobs for your members, and Yonkers can pay it’s bills.
    If you continue to refuse, you are nothing more than selfish. And the people of Yonkers know it.

  23. “bring the unions in line with current economic realities” How about bringing unions in line 5 and 10 years ago when EVERY swinging dick down on Wall Street was making 200K per anum AND out of line bonuses. In those times lowly civil servants were laughed at by the downtown suits. But after orchestrating their own collapse through dot-com and mortgage scams it is we the unions who are fair game. We the unions who come to work every day. We the unions who pay taxes every year. We the unions who keep this country moving. Not the cry baby suits who can’t justify their bloated money grabs any longer.

  24. WOW. The world continues to spin out of control. The latest sign of the impending end of the world is that Hezi has begun drinking the Spano cool aid. Hezi, Hezi, Hezi you disappoint us so. A Spano puff piece from someone we always trusted to be a voice from the outside. So goes Yonkers

  25. I have thought about this a lot and it seems to me
    that those elected governors who have taken on
    the unions per se have blown it for their constituents
    and ultimately have had to retreat..its really not
    about “the unions” its about how overtime is given
    out..and its also about working with the union leadership in a trusting non confrontational manner
    to accomplish savings and at the same time saving jobs
    when union personnel are laid off they stop spending
    cutting at the federal level has meant state layoffs
    not healthy in this economy which is driven 70% by
    consumer spending ..if we lose municipal workers who
    spend we are not helping the economy grow..coupled with
    low interest rates for older baby boomers who have saved it is a recipe for another recession…mike spano
    is by nature non confrontational and although many
    of us understand that the union members who have gamed
    the system have taken unfair advantage of the rules
    they nevertheless have done it legally..and to undue
    it will take the ability to pursuade not the ability
    to threaten….that is what I think the choice
    will be in november..tonality rather than cage rattling

  26. It is really very simple.
    Both John Murtagh and Carlo Calvi hVe called for the unions to open the contracts and bring them in line with current economic realities.
    The union bosses refuse. They are more interested in keeping money and power to themselves, and would rather bring Yonkers to it’s knees than give up anything meaningful. The tiny bit they have returned in a media ploy, nothing more.
    Where has “Mellow Mike Spano” been? He says nothing because the uninstall Re in his pocket. They line up to help him because they know where the money pit is….his campaign headquarters on Central Avenue.
    So at the end of the day it’s Mellow Spano and the fat cat union bosses versus all the hard working non union Yonkers residents struggling to get by. All of YOU who are losing their homes, taking pay cuts, losing their jobs, no health insurance.
    And certainly NO huge pensions.
    Mike Spano will keep this machine going. An endless river of money to his union protection, while the Marshall throws you out of your house.
    Does not sound fair to me….

  27. Mike seems to be the only candidate who will actually be able to work with the council on a bi-partisan level. Lord knows we haven’t had a mayor in several terms who can even work with his own party. Murtagh’s election would only give us more of the “my way or the highway” mentality where nothing gets accomplished. It would behoove Lesnick to offer his concession now. Unity is paramount to solving the litany of issues needing resolution.

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