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Thursday December 2 2010 news updates

Dec 02, 2010 12:01 am
GOP says Martins is a lock, Dems want recount
Rick Karlin in Capitol Confidential reports, "Senate Republicans are all but declaring Jack Martins the victor in the 7th SD [Senate District], noting that he’s got a 438-vote lead over incumbent Craig Johnson and there are only 135 absentee ballots that had objections which still need to be counted." Yesterday the Associated Press reported that Democrat Antoine Thompson conceded defeat to Republican Mark J. Grisanti in the 60th state Senate District in Buffalo, placing the New York State Senate in a 30-30 tie with two races undecided. Democrats, though, are not giving up on Craig Johnson, as they were in a Nassau County court Wednesday in what could potentially lead to a hand recount. "They note that the mandatory audit of 3 percent of the voting machines has yielded a 40 percent error rate according to the local Board of Elections," Karlin reports. "They are seeking a hand re-count, noting that this could set a precedent for elections under the new ballot scanning devices. It’s what Johnson’s spokesman Rich Azzopardi termed 'uncharted territory.'" In the other race, Westchester Democrat Suzi Oppenheimer is up about 300 votes over Republican Bob Cohen at this time. A tied assembly would probably favor the Democrats, although Republicans plan a court challenge to the Lt. Gov.'s tie-breaking vote. Our area Assembly representatives are Republican (Marc Molinaro, Pete Lopez, and Steve McLaughlin), so there could be more local pork if the GOP takes over.

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="175" caption="Martin Van Buren, from Wikipedia."][/caption]National Guard honors President Martin Van Buren Friday in Kinderhook
Brigadier General Anthony P. German, Chief of Staff for the New York Air National Guard, will lay a wreath at former U.S. President Martin Van Buren's grave in Kinderhook to mark his 228th birthday Friday. Dec. 3. This is an annual event honoring the eighth President, Martin Van Buren, a Columbia County native who died on July 24, 1862 in Kinderhook. The ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, Dec. 3 at Kinderhook Cemetery, County Route 21, Kinderhook.

Local movie news

"Higher Ground," a film partially shot in Ulster County towns Kingston, Ellenville, Stone Ridge, and at Rondout Valley High School in Kyserike, and directed and starring Ulster resident Vera Farmiga, will compete at the Sundance Film Festival, Jan. 20-30 in Park City, Utah, according to The Daily Freeman.... [caption id="" align="alignleft" width="185" caption="Mark Ruffalo in GQ."][/caption]The Washington Post gossip column yesterday squelched the rumor circulating the internet that actor Mark Ruffalo, who also has a residence in the Catskills, is on some sort of government watch list because of his outspoken views against natural gas hydraulic fracturing. In an interview in GQ Ruffalo said he was on a terrorist "watch list" for the state of Pennsylvania and implied it had something to do with his promotional work for the political documentary "Gasland," about natural gas hydraulic fracturing. From the Post: "Marie Finn, a spokeswoman for the state's Office of Homeland Security said they have no idea what he's talking about; they don't have a "list," and Ruffalo's never been mentioned in any of their information bulletins. "We are not sure how this originated," she said. We asked the actor's publicist to help us all straighten this out; sadly, she said, he's not available for comment." Perhaps it was a slight idea to sell additional copies of GQ?

Dec. 2 birthdays include K. Veeramani, Penelope Spheeris, and Amin Saikal.
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