The 2022 New York State gubernatorial campaign

 

POLL RESULTS

 

 

When the poll results were in, we had a tie. Lee Zeldin and Rob Astorino had tied. We waited until the primary and then we gave our full and unconditional endorsement to the winner, Lee Zeldin. We wish to thank the members of the Libertarian Club of New York for their support, their continued involvement and their timely responses to this important poll. 

 

REGIME CHANGE IN ALBANY

Why is this important?

This is likely to be an extraordinary election. The November 2021 ouster of the Democrats in Virginia and the close-call scare in New Jersey came as quite a shock to many. If you have been reading these newsletters, you already know that we believe that a similar result is possible in New York in the November 2022 election. New York State was not always majority Democrat and there is no reason to think that the status quo must be permanent. An opposition party candidate can win this election.

This year, in an extraordinary and highly charged political environment, we have two options open to us:

  • We can support the most libertarian-leaning of the candidates who have a realistic and possibly one-time-only chance of defeating the Democrat candidate.
  • We can support a third-party-only candidate who has no plausible chance of winning the election and will probably not get more than one or two percent of the vote, especially since third party candidates tend to do poorly in close elections.

While NYS gubernatorial elections have not typically been close, this year is likely to be different. The New Jersey gubernatorial race was so close that they needed extra time to tally the votes. If that happens here, the margin of victory could be smaller than the libertarian voting bloc. If our libertarian voting bloc is not directed toward a viable opposition candidate, the Democrats will retain power.

A third-party-only candidate has not won major office in NYS since James L. Buckley was elected U.S. Senator, under very different circumstances from those prevailing today. However, the libertarian voting bloc can probably determine which of the major party frontrunners will win the election.

The question of whether to support an electable, compromise candidate or a “pure libertarian” candidate is a question that never goes away and can never be definitively settled. However, in an environment like the current one, it is brought into sharp focus and places large, non-mainstream voting blocs in a position of extraordinary importance. We can’t put a third-party-only candidate in the governor’s mansion, but we may be able to pick the winner from among the frontrunners. The choice is ours.

 

OUR ASSESSMENT OF THE SITUATION

The next New York State gubernatorial election is coming up on Tuesday, November 8, 2022. When we first wrote this, Cuomo had not yet resigned and he was still the frontrunner, scandals and all. Kathy Hochul does not have the political weight that is based upon the “alliances” that come from having an insider’s inventory of the skeletons in the closet of Albany. Kathy Hochul is no Cuomo. This extraordinary situation presents us with a rare opportunity to change the political landscape of New York State, possibly for the long term.

No matter how it turns out, it will not be the only factor in the election. The shrill stridency of the far left will be on the ballot. A large and growing segment of the electorate is tiring of their antics. There is also the tendency of the opposition party to gain ground in the midterm elections after a change in control of the White House. A more centrist insurgent candidate, possibly a more libertarian one, at that, will stand a good chance, since libertarianism is the antithesis of what the far left is pushing.

The left’s overreaction to the coronavirus will be on the ballot. A dissatisfaction with the incumbent government’s ability to increase its own power by declaring an emergency will push the electorate in a more libertarian direction.

In recent elections, the margin of victory has been very thin. A political demographic that can move the election a percentage point or two currently has more influence than ever before. An endorsement from a club like ours will carry weight that is out of proportion to the club’s size.

In the interim, we should try to bulk up. Please get your friends, neighbors and relatives to join the LCNY. While we do not have to disclose the size of our membership, we must file financial disclosure statements with the Board of Elections. Those reports are publicly available, so the political classes know what we have.

 

 

 

 

 

“We had a tie.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“In recent elections, the margin of victory has been very thin. A political demographic that can move the election a percentage point or two currently has more influence than ever before.”

 

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