A former Speaker of the California State Assembly once said of the relationship between lobbyists and politicians, “If you can’t eat their food, drink their booze, screw their women, take their money and then vote against them you’ve got no business being up here.”
Last Friday it became clear that Senators Mike Ranzenhofer, Chris Jacobs, and Pat Gallivan can’t live up to that standard.
In a 14-to-9 vote, the three men handed the Senate’s Minority Leadership position to Suffolk County’s John Flanagan, who is more closely beholden to New York City area power brokers. Had they voted with the nine other members of the Republican caucus who hail from Upstate or Western New York, Cathy Young, the Republican from Olean, would have taken the helm of the caucus.
The local political scene is livid — and in a flurry of speculation over what the three men might have received or secured in exchange for their vote. What could the price tag have been for such an unconscionable betrayal of one’s constituents, they wonder.
Many party footsoldiers are openly branding the Senators, perhaps apocryphal, “The Three Cucks.” The word cuck is a right-wing colloquialism for submissive ‘beta-males’ whose marriage is mostly for show.
Upstate and Western New York carry what little Republican Party is left in this state — but the region’s elected representatives are largely pushovers, neither particularly bright or strategic thinking. As a result — rather than driving the party — the region becomes an afterthought in the calculations of hapless Long Islanders who have overseen the collapse of the GOP in their own region.
Republican operatives are demanding the departure of Flanagan and State Chairman Ed Cox, both seen as extraordinarily weak leaders who are incapable of retaking the State Senate in 2020 ahead of 2021 reapportionment.