Sunday, August 27, 2006

 

A sign of things to come?

Queens Assembly Race Spurs Dispute on TacticsThree weeks after Election Day, a State Assembly election in Queens has produced a forgery investigation, charges of questionable campaign tactics and a protest meeting of civic activists.

The controversy surrounds campaign mailings and literature of John F. Duane... in southeast Queens. . .

Two other Assembly aids, Carl Kruger and Bernard Catcher, a partner with Mr. Genovese in a Brooklyn travel agency, worked full time in the Duane campaign.
New York Times, November 23, 1982

John Duane: A Reformer Goes Sour
Village Voice



Duane's enemies and former friends agree that his campaign became ugly - false and unsigned litature, unauthorized endorsements and signatures, a last minute negative blitz - in mid October, shortly after the Political Professionals from Assembly Speakers Stanly Fink's Democratic Campaign committee stepped in. . .

One of Duane volunteer worker who watched the campaign change described it this way: "We were running a door to door campaign until the last couple of weeks, when Pink's office suddenly figured they could win this seat. They putting thousands of dollars and sent over the so called pros. Very shortly, these fellows were running the campaign. Some of what they did was good, but a few days before the election they put out pieces we wanted nothing to do with, half-truths, and typical last minute campaign stuff. They had to bring in a busload of kids from Brooklyn to have it out because the volunteers wouldn't touch it." He paused a minute then added, "John margin was substantial. He could have won without all that crap hauled in by Fink's guys . . .

That crap: included according to Prescott, Queens weeklies, and some of Duane's fellow reformers, included a racially polarizing piece which referred ominously to Rochdale Village, a mostly black cooperative development, an unsigned leaflet asking why his opponent Prescott did not vote against Medicaid funding for abortion (Duane is pro choice), palm cards and posters on election day linking Duane to Republican state senator, Frank Padavain's popularity, and another saying Prescott had lied about Duane's opposition to the death penalty; and bulk mailing without any return address (a violation of U.S. Postal regulations). . .

In friends and allies he has offered the feeble excuse that he "couldn't stop" the Genovese crew, and that he lost control of his campaign.

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