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11:10 AM


Early and Often Endorses the ‘Daily News’

"We support Christopher Callaghan for New York comptroller," says the Times today.

In August, if there was one candidate for any state office who seemed least likely to be endorsed by the Times, it was Callaghan. GOP Senate hopeful John Spencer's "War for All Forever" platform had a better shot. The Times' nod is more of a shrug. "In interviews and in this week's debate, he has been extremely unimpressive, hardly the man whom voters would normally want to hire as the state's chief fiscal officer and sole trustee of New York's $140 billion pension fund."

The Times' logic is a little goofy: In voting to install the eminently unqualified former Saratoga County treasurer, we're not really selecting the right candidate for the job but instead circumventing the "curdled" political culture of Albany, which would select Hevesi's replacement — assuming he does what's now probably the right thing and resigns. The one million people in the state pension system (as well as the tens of millions of New Yorkers easily annoyed by boring white guys in bowties) might see this act of conscience a little differently. The Republican Party spent more time considering the catering for its post-convention party than it did selecting Callaghan. Isn't there some other way we can rise as one and protest our broken system?

The Daily News agrees the choice belongs to the people and not the curdlers. But the paper wants us to take "some perspective," describing Callaghan as "a nice, decent man. The Wall Street sharks would surely have him for breakfast and toss the bones." The editorial board also take a levelheaded, even laid-back view of Hevesi's ruination. "On the grand scale of offenses against probity, Hevesi is guilty of misdemeanor rather than felony … Callaghan was unsuited for the job from the moment the Republicans nominated him. So, at this time, it has to be Hevesi."

Atmospherically above the fray as we are, having assessed the tone, style, and argument of these editorials, Early & Often endorses the Daily News endorsement of Alan Hevesi. It was shorter, clearer, mentioned sharks, and made the gutsier choice against the political grain. It wasn't an easy choice for us, but the ones that count never are.

For New York Comptroller [NYT]
Why It Has to Be Hevesi [NYDN]