The dirty Seawright campaign for reelection reached new lows, this summer, turning to tactics she condemned when attacking opponents in May. Now, as autumn approaches, she’s worse.
By David Stone
UPDATE September 17th: Seawright Campaign That Couldn’t Get Dirtier… Does
The Upper East Side of Manhattan and Roosevelt Island saw a different, far less attractive Rebecca Seawright, this year.
First, when she failed to qualify for the Democrat and Working Families Party lines for November voting, she attacked her opponent, Lou Puliafito. She accused the Republican of “Soviet-style” tactics and of disenfranchising voters.
Puliafito had nothing to do with her flawed nominating petitions, and technical challenges are far from unusual. But in her immediate fury, she cut loose.
In a series of assaults, coordinated with Albany leadership, Seawright duplicated tactics for which she condemned her opponent.
But it didn’t stop there…
In July, disgusted that Seawright’s ineptitude lead to an empty Democratic Party line, a second Democrat, Patrick Bobilin, a progressive, entered the race.
Bobilin suffered the same assaults Puliafito did, but against her own party opponent, Seawright did worse.
As seen in videos, Team Rebecca member Peter Patch menaced Bobilin while collecting signatures, and that included pulling down his face mask to yell at him.
Dirty as they were, empowered out of Albany as they were, Seawright’s hypocritical assaults all failed.
You might think that’s enough, but it wasn’t.
Attacking opponent on the job…
“It’s petty and vindictive,” Puliafito told The Roosevelt Island Daily/News, after discovering, this week, that the Rise and Unite Party candidate set up shop on the ground floor of the building where he works.
As anyone walking the streets on the Upper East Side knows, the area has plenty of empty storefronts. So, why invade her opponents place of work?
To vindictive and petty, we add “dirty,” but there is no truth in the rumor that Seawright now wants space in Puliafito’s home for quick naps and campaign meetings.
Adding diversion to the mix…
Bereft of achievements worth bragging about, after six years in office, Seawright creates diversions. She tried painting Bobilin as a violent radical and a nonresident, but her latest assault against Puliafito is positively Trumpian.
The president, for example, tells audiences that his opponent, Joe Biden, supports defunding police departments, but he doesn’t. Seawright frantically accuses Puliafito of supporting Trump, although the Liberal Republican insists on keeping his focus local..
Here again, voters wonder why she veers off into topics not on the ballot or related to the responsibilities of a New York State Assembly Member.
End of Update
“We must assure freedom of choice for the voters of the Upper East Side, Yorkville, and Roosevelt Island.”
Incumbent 76th state assembly member Rebecca Seawright said that while accusing her Republican opponent of Soviet Union-style tactics.
Lou Puliafito‘s great sin…?
Raising objections to her filings for reelection.
Notwithstanding that her political next door neighbor Dan Quart did exactly the same thing, vying to run unopposed…
And the Seawright campaign now goes the same route, trying to push progressive Patrick Bobilin off the ballot. The fishing expedition seeks technical errors in his petitions, not winning policy arguments.
Oh, and just for the record, the Republican was right. Her election petitions had multiple major errors, and the Board of Elections tossed her.
Rebecca Seawright’s Dirty Campaign in Perspective
When Seawright ran against a field of male opponents to replace Micah Kellner in 2014, she had a smart, easy going appeal . It was much like Hillary Clinton before oppo attacks targeted redefining her.
I covered that first race and voted for her. A less polarizing representative who knew how to work with others was just what we needed.
But that patina is gone.
Over three terms, she evolved from a progressive eager to make a difference, especially for women, into a Cuomo camp follower.
Her record of accomplishment is undistinguished, and that helps explain a campaign rooted in tactics, not policies.
“She’s filed a general objection with the Board of Elections,” Bobilin confirmed.
“It signals to me that our campaign has momentum with a 100% volunteer effort of about 50 petitioners collecting nearly 4,000 signatures in just 3 weeks,” he added.
“…wouldn’t put anything past her.”
Seawright, aided by a formidable party machine and a campaign in motion for months, gathered only 5,100.
Bobilin also sees her attack as “hypocritical,” given her prior statements condemning the same tactics, but a major party operative said worse:
“I wouldn’t put anything past her,” he said.
Earlier in September, Seawright’s duel attacks on Bobilin, plus another on Liberal/Republican Lou Puliafito, were rejected in a New York State Supreme Court ruling. But she’s appealing, she says, through her surrogate, Peter Patch.
If her latest dirty campaign attack fails, Seawright faces challenges from both Puliafito and Bobilin in November, but if it succeeds, she’ll have successfully sat on both sides of the fence.
At the expense of constituents’ trust.