Somehow, with a recession, high unemployment, two wars and much more, Obama has time to worry about the state of New York’s upcoming Governor’s race. Enough time to worry and get involved. He sent word to Governor David Paterson – a Democrat – that he wants him to withdraw from running for reelection. It seems that Paterson is not popular, and Obama wants Democrat Andrew Cuomo to have a clear path to office. The problem: it is unusual for a President to get involved in state matters, plus Paterson is one of only two African American Governors. And Paterson is blind.
Here’s a repeatable recap – to date – there is sure to be more so check back:
March 17, 2008: Eliot Spitzer(D) resigns as Governor of New York because of a prostitution scandal. David Paterson succeeded him that day.
September 20, 2009: Obama sends a request to Governor Paterson that he withdraw from the Governor’s race. The request was proposed by his advisors and approved by the President.
It was a bad week to ask one of two Black governors to change their political course. This was the week former President Jimmy Carter said outrage to Obama was because he was black, and also the week where a black rapper jumped up on stage at a music awards show to grab the microphone from a white artist – only to proclaim that another black artist should have won the award. Obama called the rapper a “jackass”.
September 20, 2009: Paterson says something along the lines of “get lost”.
September 23, 2009: Paterson’s wife, Michelle, says it is wrong for the White House to get involved in a local race. “David’s the first African American governor in the state of New York and he’s being asked to get out of the race. It’s very unusual and seems unfair. I never heard of a President asking a governor not to run.”
September 23, 2009: New York state’s top Democratic leaders sent messages of support for the Governor – saying some are behind him “150 percent.”