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.

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August 5th, 2011

Political season begins to heat up

So far the 2011 election cycle on the surface appears to be rather dull and uneventful. True we are in the dog days of summer, and most campaigns do not gear up until after Labor Day, still there have been some political shockers taking place.

First off, JJ Pavese who was viewed by many as a rising star within the Sullivan County political scene did not garner enough signatures on his petitions to run as a Democrat in his desire to unseat Republican legislator Alan Sorensen.

Pavese, a registered Conservative until recently, could not obtain signatures by himself. He needed registered Democrats to get the necessary signatures, and then get a wavier to run as a Democrat.

Pavese publically blamed certain members of the Village of Monticello Democratic Committee for not getting him signatures, and indicated to the press he knew he would not have enough signatures and purposely did not get them. Pavese claimed he was testing the waters and wanted to see if village Democrats would deliver as promised.

The bottom line is this. There is no one to blame but Pavese himself. If he wanted to run that badly for legislator and get on the ballot, he would have made certain from day one he got the required number of signatures needed. Blaming others for ones mistakes is a disservice and insult to the Democrats who embraced him.

Cora Edwards, on the other hand, worked endlessly to become the Democratic nominee to unseat 12 year Republican incumbent Jodi Goodman who has recently been accused of unethical conduct.

A registered independent prior to aligning with Democrats, Edwards also needed others to collect her signatures. But, unlike Pavese, she went door to door accompanying Democrats.

Pavese however is not the only shocker. The efforts to unseat Judges Perry Meltzer and Howard Block join the fray.
Perry Meltzer who has been a respected and much praised Town of Thompson Justice for over twenty years, has found himself in a Democratic Primary battle with attorney John Kelly.

Kelly, who is a friend and ally of County Court Judge Frank LaBuda, quietly without any fanfare or publicity, flooded pages with signatures to challenge Meltzer in a September primary.

Amazingly, assisting Kelly in getting his signatures for Town Judge was Rochelle Massey, girlfriend of Village of Monticello Mayor Gordon Jenkins. Massey along with Jenkins recently pled guilty to five counts of trademark counterfeiting.
Some of the very Village of Monticello Democrats Pavese complained about also assisted Kelly. Amongst them was Village Trustee TC Hutchins.

These Democrats are now challenging the official Town of Thompson Democratic petitions and are attempting to knock off the entire endorsed slate. They also want to take control of the Town Committee. This is despite the fact that County Chairman Daryl Kaplan offered an olive branch to Hutchins among others on numerous occasions to work together and unify the party.
Sadly, these people have their own agenda and it does not appear to be in the interests of Sullivan County.

In Bethel, embattled Howard Block is facing an uphill primary battle from former Town Judge Cindy Barber. There is also a Town Council primary between Bernie Cohen, Robert Blais and Vicky Simpson.

Let’s not forget several townships still have not held their caucuses.

Yup, the fun is just beginning.

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