Mouth That Roars

Bill Liblick has made a name for himself of National TV Talk Shows where he spouted his outspoken views from the front row. Now he offers you his opinion every week in the "MOUTH THAT ROARS" Column in the Sullivan County Post.

- Subsribe at
November 6th, 2009

Another election is now behind us

The people of Sullivan County have spoken. Chief Assistant District Attorney Jim Farrell will become our new chief prosecutor, while Michael Schiff will remain our sheriff.

Voters also had a great deal to say in Town elections.

The biggest winner was clearly the Sullivan County voter, because they are able to elevate themselves from all the campaign rhetoric. Our electorate proves time and time again they will not allow party affiliation to be their determining factor in electing candidates.

Accolades must go out to the Sullivan County Democrat for their fair and balanced election reporting, and providing editorial space for all candidates.

A big thank you is also due to Thunder Country for airing what turned into a widely successful political debate series. The high volume of Internet downloads were widely unexpected, proving that the Sullivan County voter wants to be informed.

District Attorney elect Jim Farrell easily trounced his opponent Glenn Kroll. Farrell who was strongly endorsed by Lungen and Sullivan County’s law enforcement community ran a campaign based on qualifications and experience.

Discussing the elections results with me, Farrell said, “I would like to sincerely thank the voters of Sullivan County for their support. It was overwhelming and I greatly appreciate it.  I will work very hard making certain justice is served while never forgetting the victims of crime.”

District Attorney Steve Lungen added, “The margin of victory demonstrates clearly that voters elected a person with experience and integrity.  It also reflects a complete repudiation of Kroll’s campaign tactics to falsely malign and deceive the public of the good work this District Attorney’s Office has been doing for the past 28 years.”

Kroll had many unfortunate gaps during the campaign. He came under scrutiny for soliciting inmates at the county jail, offering a $10,000 reward, handing out bottles of alcohol, and for using scare tactics and misleading statistics to make it appear as if the District Attorney’s Office was responsible for crime in Sullivan County.

At times it appeared as if Kroll’s campaign advisors convinced him he was running against Lungen, making it seem as if there were some underlying scores being settled.

Many loyal Democrats distanced themselves from Kroll, including Callicoon Supervisor Linda Babitz, who called him a “loose cannon” and expressed concerns that his actions could hurt the Democratic ticket.

It looks like Babitz was right as she and Mamakating Supervisor Bob Fiore appear to have lost thanks to the Farrell/Schiff wave. Kroll was instead expected to help Fiore because it was his hometown.

In the race for Sheriff, legislator Frank Armstrong ran a grassroots campaign meeting people door to door. It is still unclear what he would have done differently if he were elected sheriff. He rarely appeared at public forums and often chose to shun the press. He was the only candidate that did not appear during the Thunder debates.

Schiff ran on his record of reinstating the DARE program, and bringing back the K-9 Unit.

The Sheriff’s Patrol is now also mandated in the County Charter, and Deputies and Correction Officers received much deserved pay increases.
Bethel incumbent Town Supervisor Dan Strum will once again be serving the residents of that municipality, while Fallsburg attorney Steve Vegliante was elected to replace retiring Supervisor Steve Levine. Tom Bose will now move up from the council in Callicoon to become their new Supervisor, while Harold Baird will now run Mamakating.

In heated the Council races, popular Town of Thompson Deputy Supervisor Bill Rieber appears to have lost his seat, while disgruntled Democrats in the Town of Bethel were not able to unseat Denise Frangipane. In Liberty, a last minute write in campaign to reelect outgoing Councilman Maurice Gerry was also unsuccessful.

Democratic Chairman Steve Wilkinson reflecting on the election results told me, “I certainly congratulate all the winners of Tuesday’s election. I want to thank the town committees for working so hard for their local candidates.  I think we showed that a strong partnership with the County Committee resulted in winning or holding onto town seats but we must reevaluate our strategy for county-wide elections.”

There can be no bitter or angered feelings concerning the outcome of the election results. Those who lost must be respected and appreciated for their desire to serve the public. Those who won will now have to live up to the expectations of those who elected them, and work hard to diligently and honorably represent all of Sullivan County.

Congratulations to all the winners, and please make us proud.

Comments are closed.