A Viable Two-Party System Needed For New York To Work
According to a just released poll by the Siena College Research Institute, Governor Hochul’s overall job performance rating is negative 36-57%, which is down from 43-53% just last month. As it is already expected to be a tough election year nationally for Democrats, this gives Republicans even more hope here in deep blue New York.
Indeed, the President’s political party almost always loses seats in Congress in mid-term elections. In modern mid-terms the party whose President sits in the White House have lost an average of thirty seats in the House of Representatives and U.S. Senate. The extent of these losses is dependent on the Presidents’ popularity and the state of the economy. Today, Biden’s ratings are in the toilet and the state of the economy is miserable with soaring inflation hitting Americans where it hurts most- in their wallets and purses.
However, in addition to these factors there are ever increasing crime rates, with many placing the blame on Democrat policies. We expect that this anti-Democrat mood will trickle down to state and local elections as well. According to the Siena poll, crime and economic issues were most important to voters in New York. Therefore, all these factors could usher in a rare red wave in Albany, where the entire state legislature and Governor are up for election.
Hochul and Democrats clearly see their vulnerability. They consistently opposed any changes to the bail reform laws- until polls clearly showed their unpopularity among a wide swath of the electorate. Then, amazingly, Hochul and Democrats made some minor changes to the law in the recently enacted state budget. They made whatever little modifications they could to seem responsive to the wider electorate without alienating their far-left base.
One Democratic state senator even admitted to the New York Post this week, “We took the easy way out, and we took it around the edges, but it’s not enough.” The same publication also noted how suspects arrested by the NYPD’s new Neighborhood Safety Teams for gun possession are still cut loose within hours due to bail reform.
To take advantage of this opportunity in New York, Republican leaders must deal with their number one obstacle- the overwhelming Democrat party registration advantage.
According to the most recent figures of the New York State Board of Elections, Democrats outnumber Republicans in the state 5,929,375 to 2,645,799. Significantly, the number of independent or “blank” voters also exceeds Republicans with 2,713,757. These are voters who choose not to enroll in any political party.
In New York City these numbers are even more lopsided. In Brooklyn alone there are 1,017,359 Democrats to only 123,231 GOPers. Additionally, there are 256,251 independent or “blank” voters. Speaking of Brooklyn, normally tranquil Bay Ridge has even seen an uptick in crime causing local leaders to ask the Guardian Angels to patrol the area.
In short, these party registration numbers allow one-party rule of our state and city and permit a small number of Democratic voters to determine outcomes that effect all of us. Remember, an extremely small number of Democrats in a primary gave us Bill de Blasio for 8 years.
Republicans need to do two things to take full advantage of their chance to win this year and save New York. They must make more inroads into their party registration disadvantage, including appealing to moderate Democrats. Also, there must be a strong, specific appeal to all those independent voters who outnumber Republicans.
We need to get rid of one-party rule in our city and state. Here is hoping there will be a winning formula to do so.
Curtis Sliwa is the Founder of the Guardian Angels & was the 2021 GOP candidate for NYC Mayor. Bob Capano has served in senior positions to NYC Republican and Democrat elected officials and was an adjunct professor of political science at John Jay College for over 15 years.
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