To the Editor:
As The Spotlight noted recently, this year’s political scene is certainly the “silly season”. Silliness is one way to describe it, others would say it’s the nasty season, with a few folks going full scale unhinged – launching into nasty, personal, and false attacks. That’s the unfortunate side of politics and why many avoid politics entirely. Bethlehem citizens recently called out our local hate-monger Facebook page in The Spotlight, and I applaud them for warning folks about this fake news site called Bethlehem Resident News, which is adding a noxious element to our town’s political dialogue. Facebook has stepped in and removed several of BRN’s repugnant posts for violations of decency standards.
Rather than listening to malicious messaging that offers nothing of substance – residents of our town should know that there is a tremendous slate of candidates endorsed by the Bethlehem Democratic Party that offer our town vision, pragmatic skills, and the desire to work collaboratively toward positive progress. Look for these candidates on the November ballot:
Dan Coffey for Town Board – Dan is a leader of our Democratic Party, and an attorney with a track record of community service (Zoning Board Chair, local volunteer). Dan is a top-tier, smart, thoughtful leader. Look for Dan on the Working Families Party line.
Giles Wagoner for Highway Superintendent – Giles is Democratic Town Board member, a former military officer with management and construction/paving experience, a local farmer and business owner, former airline pilot, and family man who has a deep history in Bethlehem. Giles is the only candidate on the ballot with the expertise necessary to manage the highway department workforce. He’s the only candidate that has anything close to the right experience for this job. Look for Giles on the Working Families Party line.
Maureen Cunningham for Town Board – Maureen is a smart civic and environmental leader whose day job is protecting the Hudson River and ensuring clean water in our towns. She also has a community track record of advocating for a more pedestrian friendly Bethlehem, and is a dynamic problem solver. (And, full disclosure, Maureen is my sister.)
Andy Kirby for Town Justice – Andy is a top notch judge because he is fair, compassionate, and knowledgeable – and he made an extremely positive impact on our court in his first term.
David VanLuven for Town Supervisor – David is a practical consensus builder who understands policy, politics, working collaboratively, and is laser focused to further Bethlehem’s tremendous assets.
Nanci Moquin for Town Clerk – Nanci is practical, smart and focuses on creating efficiencies in town government to make our operations work smoothly. She’s a keeper.
These are the dream team candidates. I invite everyone to learn about them, listen to their ideas, and see for yourself what smart, thoughtful leaders they are. Don’t listen to the noise of the “silly season”, which is coming from people and candidates that don’t have any ideas of their own about how to advance positive change. Bethlehem is a great community – let’s elect candidates who will continue our progress.
Joanne E. Cunningham
Albany County Legislator, ED 34
Bethlehem Democratic Party