10:15 am Nov. 28, 2011
Councilman Charles Barron's entrance into the race to unseat Rep. Ed Towns will make for a more lively Democratic primary season.
It may also end up helping return the longtime lawmaker back to office in the New York's 10th congressional district, in Brooklyn.
Barron kicked off his campaign on Sunday in what is textbook fashion for him, which is to say unlike anyone else I can think of.
He said, among other things, "Robert Mugabe is my hero and guess what, so is Muammar Gaddafi;" "We are 99 percent of the 99 percent;" "I'm still not saluting the flag;" "I don't know if I'm going to get a single bill passed; don't care.")
At the same time, just as support for same-sex marriage has become the default position of Democratic politicians in this part of the country, Barron is holding out. When he ran for governor in 2010, he declined to say whether he supported same-sex marriage, and he still hasn't moved from that non-position. (He finished behind the Green Party candidate and almost everyone else.) Barron's wife, Assemblywoman Inez Barron voted against same-sex marriage, and is facing her own challenger.
Barron ran for Towns' seat in 2006 along with another challenger, the controversial, embattled and low-key assemblyman Roger Green. Barron and Green split the opposition vote that year, and Towns, who pretty much didn't campaign at all, won re-election.
Barack Obama no longer has a huge social-media advantage over his Republican opponents, according to one analysis. [Jonathan Lemire]
Obama's re-election team is quietly putting soldiers on the ground and winning local races. [Jim Rutenberg]
Unhappy Democrats should put Obama in context before voting next year, says a Times columnist. [Nicholas Kristof]
John Kennedy's allure is based more on fiction than reality, according to another Times columnist. [Ross Douthat]
Senator Chuck Schumer said new "Footpath Technology" should only be used to track customers if customers agree. [Alison Gendar and Simone Weichselbaum]
Former Democratic congressman Dan Maffeei will get a primary challenge from political novice Brianne Murphy in the 25th congressional district. [Mark Weiner]
City Councilman Charles Barron will join Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries in challenging Rep. Ed Towns. [Colin Campbell]
Governor Andrew Cuomo won't call the legislature back into session before January. [Fred Dicker]
State Senate Republicans may draw a "super Jewish" district in Brooklyn and get former Democratic councilman Simcha Felder to run for it. [Reuven Blau]
The community-benefits agreement struck between Columbia and residents in Harlem is in limbo, and congressional candidate Vince Morgan said it will hinder future development. [Jacob Gershman]
The latest adventure for local political activist Frank Morano: Drafting Tom Golisano to run for president. [Tom Wrobleski]
High school graduation standards "clearly need radical recalibration" by state officials, says one editorial page. [New York Post]
After not checking the check-except status since 2007, the city Department of Finance is giving non-profits until Dec. 5 to verify their claim. [Josh Margolin]
The Department of Transportation didn't interview any of (six) applicants for a $146,276-a-year job that ended up going to someone already at the department. [David Seifman]
MTA ridership is up 2.1 percent, partly due to cuts in other services. [Jennifer Fermino]
Con Ed charged New Yorkers twice the national average for electricity. [Bill Sanderson]
CUNY tuition will jump 31 percent by 2015. [Yoav Gonen]