Gillibrand and Cenedella navigate the politics of the Internet

Kirsten Gillibrand and Marc Cenedella. (Azi Paybarah and Mcenedella, via flickr)
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If the 2012 Senate race in Massachusetts between Republican incumbent Scott Brown and Democrat Elizabeth Warren is really about financial regulation and Wall Street, you can say that one theme of the 2012 Senate race in New York in its very, very early stages, has to do with understanding technology and the Silicon Alley.

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a liberal Democrat, has appeared at the Personal Democracy Forum conference and was an early advocate for using technology to increase transparency in government. She's popular with the tech crowd.

But earlier this month she angered tech entrepreneurs by supporting federal anti-piracy legislation that critics said made it too easy to regulate and sanction legitimate websites because of alleged copyright infractions. Gillibrand and the bill's other supporters, faced with a revolt by the local tech lobby, and by Google, Wikipedia, Tumblr and other sites, withdrew their support for the legislation as it was written.

Her opponent, Marc Cenedella, actually comes from the tech world, having started a successful online job-placement company. But its safe to say his politics make him something of an oddity in Silicon Alley: He's very conservative, and active in the Club for Growth, an no-compromise, no-prisoners anti-tax organization that talks about "RINOs" and challenges moderate Republicans from the right.

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Funnily enough, the first real challenge Cenedella has faced in his proto-candidacy--he has yet to join Nassau County comptroller George Maragos as an official candidate for the Republican nomination--was the revelation that he ran a blog years ago that featured raunchy, mysoginistic content.

After first attempting to muddy the issue by dismissing the posts as just stuff that happens on a "group blog," Cenedella said he took responsibility for the content, and said, in effect, it was just business, as he tried to raise his site's profile. In a radio interview today, Cenedella said he wasn't surprised the posts were found, and encouraged people to check out more of what he was doing, trying to demonstrate that they were harmless.

If nothing else, he's showing an understanding of technology that many elected officials do not have. He gets that what's online stays online, forever.

Some links:

Schneiderman

He explained "the conduct that created the crash, not the abuses that happened after the fact." [Jim Puzzanghera]

Schneiderman still has concerns about a proposed 50-state settlement related to the mortgage crisis. [Reuters]

Senate 2012

You can't erase your online past. [Nick Judd]

"Cendella was portrayed as a monster because he was the publisher of an online site that linked to other people’s weird opinions." [Bill O'Reilly]

Gawker, who Cenedella said he was copying, writes a headline about the incident that Cenedella, if he was still publishing, would probably link to. [Jim Newell]

The new meme: Cenedella is "Paladino Jr." [David Freedlander]

NY-19

"I’ve always said that I’m totally 100 percent focused on re-election to the Senate," said Republican state senator Greg Ball. [Joseph Spector]

SD-27

Democrat Lew Fidler tells an Orthodox Jewish outlet one of his top priorities will be providing "tuition relief" for "middle class families who are trying to educate their children in a manner that is consistent with their upbringing, their religion and their culture. I think that's a critically important thing for us to do." [Flatbushscoop.com]

The Third Jihad

"NYPD's Ray Kelly Knew He Was Appearing in Anti-Muslim Films" [Dino Grandoni]

"NYPD Spokesman Paul Browne is a Lying Liar" [John Cook]

Redistricting

Former Republican state senator Frank Padavan may look to run against the Democrat who ousted him, Tony Avella. [Chris Bragg]

Two Democratic state senators who may get drawn into the same district share Parkside Group as consultants. [Liz Benjamin]

"If Cuomo bends, then it could be seen that he’s not just going back on his word to good-government advocates, but also helped the opposition party stay in control of the Senate." [Nick Reisman]

The Supreme Court ruling about redistricting in Texas won't apply to New York, if Cuomo vetoes the lines, as planned. [Liz Benjamin]

Quotes

"The borough president is not clairvoyant." [Sally Goldenberg]

"I don't stand outside with placards. I do to work everyday." [Rep. Michael Grimm]

Local

The city won't have a ticker tape parade for 9/11 responders. [Julie Shapiro]

Brooklyn is basically Portlandia. [Ben Yakas]

Images

Councilwoman Debi Rose's communication director registered in the Democratic Party. [Tom McGinley]

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"01.23 正月里来是新年呀~~大年初一头一天呀~~ —" [Fengtao Huang]

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The view from behind Bloomberg while he testified in Albany yesterday. [Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis]

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"My functional -- and fetching -- mic stand." [Kate Shogi Hinds]

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Hanging out with the speaker. [Chad Gilkison]

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Cuomo makes a Cuomo joke, in Buffalo. [flickr]

cuomojoke