Now what?­

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Now what?­

First comes the the jockeying for positions.

The make-up of the new Southampton Town Board come January will look like this:

  • Supervisor: Republican Linda Kabot
  • Councilpersons: Republicans Christo­pher Nuzzi and a thoroughly vindicated Nancy Graboski, and new kid at the rodeo, Democrat Anna Throne-Holst.

The missing person in this formation would be who­ever is appointed to fill out the next year of Mrs. Kabot's vacated seat on the Board. Although her term would not have been up until the end of 2009, since the individual replacing her will be an appointee, that seat will be subject to a contest next November, co­incidentally, a Presidential election in which the present tea leaves portend a big butt-kicking by the Demo­crats. Whoever can be agreed upon to the open position... if anyone... would likely be a Republican, #1, and, #2, had better be prepared for the fight of his or her life come next Fall if they wish to withstand the expected Democratic tidal wave.

(Keeping an admirably low profile through­out was Mrs. Kabot's campaign adviser, Ann Nowak, one-time girl reporter... and a damn good one... for The Hampton Chronicle-News [sigh!] who 20+ years ago chucked the West of the Canal news beat for Queens Law School before making a triumphant return in a sealed LIRR car to set up her practice in Southampton and immerse herself in Republican politics. She's bright, in­tense, and likely has the inside track for the Kabot Council seat if she wants it1.)

The good news for that person is that despite a re-energized Democratic Party in Southamp­ton... gone is the mutual masturbation enclave of inept idealogues from just two years ago... the Town is still a bastion of Republicanism! The rock ribs might be showing some cracks and, East of the canal, certain signs of mushi­ness, but the "Pilgrim" still wears the GOP colors.

For how much longer, is the real question here... the Town Republican organization is in serious disarray, having allowed its own throat to be slit from within last Spring by the deter­mination of three-term incumbent Supervisor Patrick "Skip" Heaney and deposed Southamp­ton Town Planning Board member Jim Zizzi to punish first term Councilwoman Nancy Graboski for openly opposing Mr. Zizzi's re-appointment. As sports­caster Warner Wolf used to say, "You could have turned your TV sets off right there!"

(Several Town Republican apparat "in­siders" continue to insist that it is absurd to think that Messrs. Heaney and Zizzi were responsible for the unceremonious discard of Mrs. Graboski, that "there were 80 others at the convention," and "she didn't get the nod by the GOP because she didn't accomplish anything at all in four years on the Board." This ignores that the one thing she did do was publicly speak for integrity over politics and, of course, this is pre­cisely why the skids were greased for her.)

It must also be observed that if "accomp­lishing something in four years on the Board" was a criterion for Committee approval for a second term, there would have been a lot of single term Council mem­bers since Southampton became a First Class Township in 1971.)

Without gainsaying the GOP Committee's selection of former Assistant District Attorney Dan Russo as one of their Town Board candi­dates, bringing Conservative Jim Drew out of his involuntary retirement to fill the Graboski slot, was strike the second. Although Mr. Drew is well-known and respected, he was batting only .500 in Town Board races on the GOP line, and had in his most recent run, been beaten by a Democrat!

The other not insignificant aspect of the oust­ing of incumbent Graboski, was that she was the only one of the Town Board candidates from East of the Canal, which territory has been subject to a Democratic incursion from across the far Eastern border, and in the cur­rent analysis, GOP leader Marcus Christopher Stinchi should consider himself fortunate that his Democratic counterpart, Mike Anthony had only one successful candidate this November.

(Although the blood-spatter was already on the Republican clubhouse walls at the time that Mr. Stinchi was re-elected to his post two months ago, several of the Old Guard have suggested that he remained Chair­man solely due to the fact that no one else wanted the job. That's now changed, as a former Chairman is making noises that he would like to return to that position to right the foundering ship.)

So Mrs. Graboski parlayed her lip-quivering indignation at being abused by her party into a convincing Primary win, and the opportunistic Mrs. Kabot moved up her advancement time-table by two years, grabbing onto the Graboski petticoats and leaving the incumbent Super­visor with an uphill and ultimately insurmount­able climb from his solitary position on Row D.

How bad was it between the Kabot/Graboski Primary victories and Election Day proper?!?

While the Town Republican organization, after the initial shock of September 18th wore off, made a number of conciliatory noises about getting behind the Kabot cam­paign, it was clear that there was a certain ambivalence to the effort as they certainly didn't pull out all the stops for her.

By the last leg of the race, with State Republican office-holders Fred Thiele and (surprisingly) Ken LaValle openly supporting Mr. Heaney's Conservative Party candidacy, "Mrs. Southampton Town Republican" herself, Party Secretary Ann LaWall sporting a Conser­vative Party sign on her front lawn, and Mr. Stinchi directing Committeemen and Zone Leaders to stay away from Mrs. Kabot's functions, there are major problems here.

Now, with all the Town-wide races decided, and all the Row B candidates save one having succeeded, Mr. Stinchi has announced that there will be a GOP "Victory Party" at Starr Boggs in Westhampton Beach.

It is unclear if Mrs. Kabot will be invited, and if she is, whether she will attend.

  1. As of 11:08 am this day, Ms. Nowak has asserted: "I'm not interested in being appointed to the Town Board. (Nor am I interested in being the Town Attorney...."


1. vel said...

I know that Chef Boggs features game on the menu, but I had not noticed crow as a prix fixe item. For a good show featuring trench warfare, go to the Nov 13 Southampton Town Board meeting now on TV Ch 22. Re: PILOTS and CPF money; I do not remember voting to bail out school districts as part of the vote for the CPF. If the CPF buys taxed land there is justification for PILOT payments to the taxing districts who suffer a loss of revenue, and there is a case for that revenue to be made up from CPF funds. Loss of tax revenue caused by purchases or takings from other sources is not and should not be part of any CPF PILOT payments.

2. Matlynn Carville said...

Kudos for calling the race in September, Speir! NOW can we put that scary lawn gnome in the back of the garage?

3. Matlynn Carville said...

IF the Republicans don't reverently step behind Madames Kabot, Throne-Holst and Graboski, the misogynists are going to find themselves out of business. It's time for government with integrity. Congratulations and Well Done, ladies.

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