UPDATE: Jay Jacobs and New York State Democrats It looks as though Jay Jacobs won’t have to go into hiding this summer after all. It’s been quite the week for the New York Democratic leader who not only gets to smoothly maneuver his man Andrew Cuomo into the race for governor, but Harold Ford has also indicated that he won’t run a primary against Kirsten Gillibrand. What a difference a week makes.
Jay Jacobs Jacobs has managed to stay just far enough away from Gov. Paterson’s radioactive energy that his bargaining power is fully intact. He was able to shelter his current stable of statewide office-holders from the Paterson implosion by being the only representative at the governor’s short-lived campaign kickoff at Hofstra University.
Paterson’s spectacular ongoing fall has yet to find bottom, which under normal circumstances should spell disaster for the party in power. But by choosing to go it alone, Paterson belongs to no one and therefore owns his decline. Coalescing power in the Democratic Party to fight angry conservatives—who have the upper hand in the polls at the moment—is the key to retaining several statewide seats. Settling these disputes now allows Jacobs to bolster Congressional races for incumbents such as Steve Israel and Tim Bishop, who may come under fire from we-smell-blood-in-the-water Republicans nationally.
The strange part of this year, however, might be the seats that either nobody is looking at (NYS Comptroller) or that leaders take for granted (Attorney General). Nevertheless, in a year when anything goes and nothing is what it seems, Jacobs has made his life immeasurably easier by allowing Paterson to fall on his own sword and maneuvering Harold Ford out of the race. Your move, Republicans.