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In NY, Libertarian Eric Sundwall at 1%

On Monday, March 9, 2009, Libertarian Eric Sundwall filed his petitions with the New York State Board of Elections . Sundwall will be on the ballot for Congress, in the 20th District (covering areas in the mid Hudson Valley and the Adirondacks.)

This is a special election, which will be held on Tuesday, March 31st, to determine the successor to Democrat Kirsten Gillibrand (recently appointed by Governor Paterson to fill Hillary Clinton’s Senate seat.)

A Siena Research Institute poll placed Eric Sundwall at 1%. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.7 percentage points.

Also in this race are: Democrat Scott Murphy (34% in poll) and Republican James Tedisco (46% in poll)

New York is a fusion state, where candidates can be on the line of several parties.  Scott Murphy is on the following lines: Democrat, Independence Party (ie: an organized third party, not “independent”), and Working Families Party. Jim Tedisco is on the following lines: Republican and Conservative.

Sources:
The Daily Star and
Syracuse.com
and
The New York State Board of Elections

42 Comments

  1. Kimberly Wilder Kimberly Wilder Post author | March 13, 2009

    I think this will be an interesting race. Some factors…

    The Daily Star points out that the district has a “15-point Republican enrollment edge”.

    Yet, Gillebrand, who was the elected official there, is a Democrat.

    The current Democratic candidate, Scott Murphy, also has more “lines” than Republican Jim Tedisco, and just adding up lines often wins things in NY elections.

    Though, I don’t like the usual “spoiler” formulas, the Libertarian Party is pretty straight-forwardly right, and, I think would pull pretty directly on a Republican (except with an unusual candidate or campaign emphasis.) That would mean more drag on Tedisco.

    Re: The Independence line

    In New York, I would say that the Independence Party leans “right”, though it does not act with a genuine philosophical bent. Instead, the party waffles between endorsing Democrats and endorsing Republicans. NY State Independence Party Chair, Frank McKay often “goes with the winner.” So, that would be a clue that Scott Murphy would win.

    I think it is great that the Libertarian candidate even got on the ballot. Having done third party work and strategizing in NY, it is nearly impossible for small third parties to overcome deadlines and petition requirements and get on the ballot in a special here.

    Also, awesome that Eric Sundwall got in a poll, and showed up at 1%. This was the first time they put him on the poll (They said they wanted to be sure he was on the ballot.) So, great prospects of moving up.

    Might be a sweet race for the Libertarians.

  2. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli March 13, 2009

    Though, I don’t like the usual “spoiler” formulas, the Libertarian Party is pretty straight-forwardly right, and, I think would pull pretty directly on a Republican

    I’ve frequently seen this stated without any actual polling of the second choices of all those who vote Libertarian, and their propensity to vote or not vote if a Libertarian is not in the race. What little attempt I’ve seen to actually study this more thoroughly actually shows that Libertarians “pull” slightly more from the Democrats than they do from the Republicans, to the extent that is even a valid analysis of what happens at all. I don’t have my source handy right now, and don’t have time to find it again.

    But I’d be interested to see if you have anything more than your own analysis of where the LP fits on the left-right “spectrum” to back the idea that it pulls more from Republicans.

  3. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli March 13, 2009

    So, some Republicans have the same misconception. Still no polling to show where Libertarian votes come from.

  4. Kimberly Wilder Kimberly Wilder March 13, 2009

    Paulie,

    I did put the part about Libertarians pulling from the right in the comments section, because I knew I did not have the statistics to place it as news or facts.

    As I noted, I can think of specific races and strategies where the Libertarian would pull from various tendencies. So, I did leave open the possibility that in all races, Libertarians don’t always pull from the Republican/Right.

    You asked about where I got the idea that they do. Some of it is from local politics. I network with many Libertarians and have spoken at their meetings as a candidate, etc. I believe that most of the crew of Libertarians on Long Island are either enrolled Conservatives or enrolled Republicans.

    I suppose these Libertarians may vote for Democrats, too. Since the Democrats don’t really stand for anything…

    😉

    This would be a fun thing to research. I have spent a lot of my life asserting that the Green Party vote does not pull more from the left. Would be interested in statistics or arguments that the Libertarian Party vote does not lean more towards Dems or Repubs.

  5. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli March 13, 2009

    #4 got caught in spam so it was not there when I responded to post #3. It’s 35 pages, so I haven’t had a chance to read it, but a quick glance shows that it does have polling with and without Sundwall in the race, so thanks.

  6. robert capozzi robert capozzi March 13, 2009

    pc, you’re correct that it’s not apparent where the LP pulls from, if at all – meaning from independents. but even if we knew, that would prove little.

    my gut tells me our richest target is independents. our second richest target is socially liberal Rs, who are alienated now. our third richest target might be counterculture and peacenik Ds. this last group could jump up if BO starts a war.

    narrowcasting is hard and expensive to execute.

  7. Morris Guller Morris Guller March 13, 2009

    Now that Eric Sundwall is officially on the ballot I believe you see his poll numbers increase dramatically.

    Voters in the 20th CD are tired of the same old politics. Think about it:

    Mr. Tedisco cannot and his family cannot even vote for him in this Special Election. He doesn’t live in the District. Outrageous! He’s a carpetbagger and knows nothing about this District.

    Mr. Murphy just moved here and he still has his head in Wall Street. Sadly, he too knows nothing about the District and the people who live here.

    Eric Sundwall lives in the District, he owns a business here, educates his children here, and understands the needs and wants of the folks who live here.

    I’m not about to trust another politician or a neewbie with this seat. It’s that important to me.

    Eric Sundwall is the best man in this race and come election day I will be first in line on March 31st to give him my vote.

    Morris Guller
    Lexington, New York

  8. Robert Milnes Robert Milnes March 13, 2009

    Eric, declare that you support The Progressive Alliance Strategy. Contact the Green Party. Ask them to not run a candidate. That they support you instead in this instance special election. PUBLICIZE THIS. You will then have access to about 40% of the vote. We need such a trial effort. By the way-20% of vote polls libertarian in an open election i.e. 13% Cato Institute The Libertarian Vote. 20% Gallup Governance Survey=7% crossover vote .

  9. robert capozzi robert capozzi March 13, 2009

    pc, BO gets a pass from the most peaceniks on inherited engagements.

  10. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli March 13, 2009

    BO gets a pass from the most peaceniks on inherited engagements.

    Most =/= all.

    People’s mileage varies.

    More and more will be realizing that Obama’s change was a phantom promise.

    Rope, Dope, Hope, Nope, Cope, Mope, Pope

    May as well get ahead of the wave and hoist a welcome flag.

  11. Ross Levin Ross Levin March 13, 2009

    Nice post, Kimberly. Good to see you’ve joined us here!

  12. Thomas L. Knapp Thomas L. Knapp March 13, 2009

    “our second richest target is socially liberal Rs, who are alienated now”

    I joined the LP in 1996, just in time to hear about how the socially liberal Rs were alienated, how they were not inspired by Bob Dole, and how they were a rich target for the LP.

    In 2000, those socially liberal Rs were alienated and were really going to bust the LP out of the pack this time.

    In 2004, it was alienated socially liberal Rs who were going to really put some zip in the LP vote.

    In 2008, the LP didn’t even bother with the “socially liberal” part — we just assumed that all Rs were alienated and tried to seduce them with an alienated R.

    The definition of insanity is doing — or assuming — the same things over and over and expecting different results.

  13. citizen1 citizen1 March 13, 2009

    It would seem that in most cases Libertarians would get the fiscal conservative vote that may go to the Republican if a the Libertarian was not in the race and the the social liberal that may go to the Democrat otherwise. Although, my experience is that there is a group of voters that never vote D or R. There are also some voters that come out just to vote for a certain candidate. In the general election they vote for the one candidate for a certain office and do not vote for anyone else.

  14. Kimberly Wilder Kimberly Wilder March 13, 2009

    Ross –

    Hope you are still happy with me. Before I read your cheery message, I kind of pounced on Pat LaMarche. Nothing personal to you. It’s been eating at me for years.

    😉

    Glad to be here. Interesting to fit in with my new identity of “blank/I do not wish to enroll in a party.”

  15. Kimberly Wilder Kimberly Wilder March 13, 2009

    Re: Who Libertarians may win over and peaceniks and Obama:

    Thanks for the excellent comments about who Libertarians do and/or might target. I do find it interesting.

    I also find that some folks are Libertarians because they love civil liberties. And, some are people who like independence from the two parties, and the Libertarians are who they find first. (That was me back in college.) There are many intersections of greens and Libertarians. In NY we once ran a Green Party Governor Candidate with a Libertarian/Green Lt. Governor Candidate, Jennifer Daniels.

    I am a peacnick. And, I knew all along that Obama was a warmonger, and that he was committed to a surge in Afghanistan. I think most greens and most radicals know this. It is just some middle of the road folks, and regular Democrats who didn’t see it.

    It will be interested to see, of those people who expected Obama to be for peace, and then see he is not for peace, where all those people will go. And, I guess it won’t be the same place for every one.

  16. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli March 13, 2009

    This one is from the Greens.

    I agree with it though….and I think it’s relevant to our discussion at comments 11-13.

  17. Ross Levin Ross Levin March 13, 2009

    Kimberly, I don’t really have an opinion of Pat LaMarche, I don’t know enough about her.

    I’m with you, I don’t belong to any specific party. I like it that way. It keeps me from blindly supporting someone just out of passion for my party.

  18. Gene Berkman Gene Berkman March 13, 2009

    In response to Tom Knapp’s comments on socially liberal Republicans, a couple of points:

    People who have been Republican because of economic issues but have socially liberal views are a rich target for Libertarians, if we have a visible candidate and a real campaign.

    In the top of the ticket races, many social liberal Republicans have been splitting between those who still vote GOP because they fear Demcrat stands on the economy, and those who have voted for Clinton,Kerry or Obama because of social issues and the war.

    If we run more active, better financed campaigns for Congress and state legislature, people who are socially liberal and economically conservative, whether Republican or Independent – are a rich target for us.

    But they won’t vote for an invisible candidate, or a candidate who appears kooky. We have a wealth of both. Our challenge is to move beyond the intentional appearance of fringiness, and I don’t see much evidence recently that this is happening.

  19. Rocky Eades Rocky Eades March 13, 2009

    @#24 – Gene writes: “Our challenge is to move beyond the intentional appearance of fringiness, and I don’t see much evidence recently that this is happening.”

    I agree. I think that running Bob Barr and Wayne Root, both of whom are among the fringe elements of the libertarian movement, was a huge mistake. We need to run candidates who are comfortable talking about core libertarian principles and leave the fringe campaigns to the Dems, the Reps, the Greens and the socialists.

  20. Steven R Linnabary Steven R Linnabary March 13, 2009

    that he was committed to a surge in Afghanistan

    PLEASE do not refer to it as a “surge”. It sounds so…antiseptic. Like “collateral damage” to refer to dead civilians.

    Please call it what it is. It is a war escalation.

    PEACE

  21. Richard Cooper Richard Cooper March 13, 2009

    You may be amused to know that I have read blog comments that assert that 1) Sundwall is promoted by Republicans to undermine Democrat Scott Murphy 2) Sundwall is promoted by Democrats to undermine Republican James Tedisco.

    I would like to get both those guys together and let them thrash out which one is right. Neither of course.

    General objections have been filed to our petitions. Specific objections must be filed in six days from March 10th. So we aren’t 100% sure of being on the ballot yet.

    Richard Cooper, Campaign manager
    Elect Eric Sundwall

    Please donate to Eric’s campaign. Election Day is March 31st. http://www.sundwall4congress.org

  22. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli March 13, 2009

    So we aren’t 100% sure of being on the ballot yet.

    Did you do an internal validity check and keep a copy of the petitions? With twice the required number, you should be pretty safe.

  23. Kimberly Wilder Kimberly Wilder March 13, 2009

    Steve L said:

    –PLEASE do not refer to it as a “surge”. It sounds so…antiseptic. Like “collateral damage” to refer to dead civilians.

    Please call it what it is. It is a war escalation.–

    Dear Steve,

    Thanks for the comment.

    I agree with you in principal.

    I partly say a surge, because for me, it makes it more real. In that, it is comparing Obama’s actions in Afghanistan directly to the idiotic actions and propaganda language of George Bush in Iraq.

    Though, I hear you.

    When describing war and killing, it is often useful to use the starkest and most real words.

    Peace and struggle,
    Kimberly Wilder

  24. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli March 13, 2009

    I agree with you in principal.

    I do too. I also agree in vice principal, coach, and first class.

    😛

  25. Jim Davidson Jim Davidson March 14, 2009

    @26 Or as Tom Lehrer described it in a similar situation, Obama is “practicing escalatio on the” Afghans.

    Whee! Like fellatio, without the happy ending.

  26. Jim Davidson Jim Davidson March 14, 2009

    @30 People who have no principles might not be able to spell the word, either, huh? lol

  27. paulie paulie March 14, 2009

    I like Kimberly. I think she has principles. Some of them are the same as mine, and some aren’t.

    And it takes someone like me, who skipped school much more often than I went, to forget that principals have assistant principals. It’s presidents who have vices, not principals.

    Although, principals do have vices too, of a different sort.

  28. TeachingTheWorld TeachingTheWorld March 14, 2009

    A more important consideration for this campaign:

    Has there been any effort to raise some fast serious money to get some advertising out there?

  29. Kimberly Wilder Kimberly Wilder March 14, 2009

    😉

    Thanks for the spelling humor, folks.

    You know, I was an English major.

    But, more importantly, I am a poet. So, when I make a mistake, I can claim Poetic License.

    (Also, I studied literacy a bit, and it is very profound to realize that with language and writing, the most important thing is that the meaning comes across…)

    😉

  30. TeachingTheWorld TeachingTheWorld March 14, 2009

    Actually, Paulie, you weren’t wrong. Some schools have “assistant principals” and some have “vice principals.”

    I had to make several visits to see the Vice Principal of my High School, so I’m quite certain about this fact.

  31. paulie paulie March 14, 2009

    I had to make several visits to see the Vice Principal of my High School

    I have both principles and vices, so I can relate.

  32. Joey Dauben Joey Dauben March 14, 2009

    Republicans in New York – if they’re anything like Rudy – I don’t want anything to do with. However, Jim Tedisco was the guy who came out against – strongly – giving illegal aliens driver’s licenses.

    If anything, Sundwall’s entry in the race will divert more votes from the Democrat, since this is a GOP district (Gillibrand only won because of the 2006 debacle and the fact she was backed by the NRA; you can’t be a Clinton Democrat and win in the 20th), and that’s a good thing.

    I’m looking at heading down to NY (from my new home state of New Hampshire) with some Young Republicans to help the soon-to-be congressman.

    It’ll be fun, and there’s nothing more fun than walking doors in a campaign.

    Libertarian Republican Politics in NH:
    SnowRevolt.com

  33. paulie paulie March 14, 2009

    Republicans in New York – if they’re anything like Rudy – I don’t want anything to do with. However, Jim Tedisco was the guy who came out against – strongly – giving illegal aliens driver’s licenses.

    OK, so Tedisco and Giuliani both suck.

    I’m looking at heading down to NY (from my new home state of New Hampshire) with some Young Republicans to help the soon-to-be congressman.

    You’re going to get Republicans to campaign for a Libertarian? That’s awesome!

  34. Leymann Feldenstein Leymann Feldenstein March 14, 2009

    This is the stuff that has the neo-fascists at the Republican “Liberty” Caucus pulling their hair out. If Tedesco loses in a close race they’ll blame the LP, and use it as a recruitment tool to entice disgruntled LPers to join them. They always blame the LP for their losses in close races. It’s never their fault.

  35. Joey Dauben Joey Dauben March 15, 2009

    No Paulie, I said I’ll probably be going down there to help the soon-to-be-congressman.

    (Tedisco)

    Polling 1 percent won’t get you elected to Congress.

  36. Trent Hill Trent Hill March 15, 2009

    True enough.

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