Groan: Tea Party Impostor Creating Havoc in NY-26

Posted: Apr 29, 2011 3:42 PM
Last time we checked in on the special election in New York's 26th Congressional District, we were chiding the local media for some sloppy fact-checking.  With special election day less than a month away, Republicans now face a potential snag in their efforts to retain the seat: A fake tea party candidate.  How fake?  This fake:

- In 2008, Jack Davis endorsed Barack Obama for President.

- In 2006, Jack Davis took $5,000 from Barack Obama's PAC.

- In 2006, Jack Davis took $7,000 from Charlie Rangel and his PAC. 

"Tea Party" fraud Jack Davis has previously run for office three a Democrat. He told the Buffalo News that he "couldn't be happier" to have played a small role in helping Democrats win back the House in 2006.  Davis is also an pro-choice zealot, having opposed bans on partial-birth abortion, and favoring taxpayer funding of abortions.  He appeared on a local radio show in July of 2006 (back when he was still officially a Democrat) and underscored this point:

Question: "So it’s been established that you are pro-choice. What about federal funding for abortion. Would you permit federal dollars to be use for Medicaid abortions?"

Answer: "I don't have a problem with that."

Senior Republican officials tell me they're still "fairly confident" about how this race will turn out, but a new poll might make them a little antsy:

A special election in New York's 26th Congressional District is a much closer contest than once thought, with Republican Jane Corwin leading Democrat Kathy Hochul by only five points in a new poll released early Friday.

Corwin, a state assemblywoman, takes 36 percent support in the Siena College poll, while Hochul, the Erie County Clerk, draws 31 percent. Wealthy businessman Jack Davis, a former Democrat running as a Tea Party candidate, earns the backing of 23 percent of likely voters, and his support appears to come at the expense of both major-party candidates; 20 percent of Democrats and 24 percent of Republicans support Davis.

Although Davis appears to be cannibalizing votes from both parties, his "tea party" bid is damaging Corwin more than her Democratic opponent.  If Western New York voters like Davis' left-wing positions and support for Barack Obama, they should vote for him.  They should not, however, be fooled by his cynical adoption of the Tea Party line to win conservative votes he would never otherwise earn.