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Can Popular Bridget Fleming Defeat Incumbent Legend Ken LaValle in State Senate Race?

Some thoughts.

For the last seven years I was paid money to evaluate local races.

I learned quickly which "brands" (a new phrase for elective candidates) were strong and run winning races no matter how the economy of the area weathered. Names like Thiele, Throne-Holst, Nuzzi, Schneiderman and LaValle seemed to be locks on re-elections. So when popular Southampton Town Councilwoman Bridget Fleming decided to take on Ken LaValle, many heads turned and said, why?

Ms. Fleming has shown the ability to raise money and connect with voters, due to the efforts of a revitalized Southampton Democratic Party lead by Gordon Herr, Grania Brolin but perhaps rebuilt by the local political genius of Michael Anthony. Phone banks, registration drives, and local appearances have served Ms. Fleming well in what so many considered an uphill battle from the start.

But Bridget Fleming seems to enjoy the good fight for the right reasons. An Obama operative from 2008, the University of Virginia Law School graduate seems to embrace a spirit of tackling impossible tasks and defeating Ken LaValle. However, defeating LaValle just may be that, impossible.

With almost twice as much money in hand, and a seasoned local well oiled ground game in place for more than 30 years, Mr. LaValle has quiet strength. No bells or whistles just a proven track record of getting large numbers of voters to the poles on election day.

He has delivered many dollars and programs to the East End. The Community Preservation Fund, a program both Fred Thiele and Ken LaValle help establish up in Albany has raised over $700 million since it was signed into law in 1999 to purchase open lands in Suffolk County. Mr. LaValle has always been active watching out for the East End. Yet Bridget Fleming wants to replace LaValle because she believes she is poised to represent a new generation of East Enders in Albany. I believe this election cycle across the nation with be a game changer for the next 10 years. The fierce tenor of the pitch of political battle is almost harmful to sensitive political ears, but the prize is the future of our, towns, counties, states, and the nation.  

John F. Kennedy once said, “Politics is the only game for adults.” This election cycle the adults are really going at it.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

knowitall November 02, 2012 at 12:33 AM
TJ what credentials do you possess to "evaluate" local races. What were the races? and have you ever run a campaign(s)? If so whose?
T.J. Clemente November 02, 2012 at 01:26 AM
Well i have some life experiences after graduating from George Washington University with a B.A. in Politcal Science, while there in 1973 as paid intern (age 19) I worked for a Democratic Congressman also a NYC mayorial campaign from the D.C. Congressional office, I hardly ever mention that in 1972 I was involved with the Presidential Election on a high level for my age, so much that on election night I was a few feet away from the Republican President. I finished college working for Ralph Nader's D.C. P.I.R.G....I was sworn in by U.S. Speaker of the House Carl Albert, had a bizarre friendship with Gerold Ford, he liked my gf, met and talked politics with Jimmy Carter and George W. Bush at GWU informal events before they were considered candidates for President. Was a pollster in the 1973 election , that was quite an education right there, and last but not least, like you knowitall I care about the future, because I have wonderful bright children.
T.J. Clemente November 02, 2012 at 01:32 AM
Also in the last seven years I have had the privilege to interview privately, town supervisors from, Riverhead, Southold, East Hampton, South Hampton, and the County Executive too, not to mention every single party leader (both parties) in all the towns east of the canal, and on the county level both parties, and was paid to do that.....other than that knowitall I am just like you, an observer. You can google most of that work.
T.J. Clemente November 02, 2012 at 01:37 AM
But now I am semi retired having just released my first novel , Whistling past the Hottie Graveyard, which is on Amazon.com buy one you will love it. Before that I wrote and was paid for just under 3000 articles on the east end, but that was a downward trending business.
T.J. Clemente November 02, 2012 at 01:43 AM
Yes i know Southampton is one word LOL


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