Here we go again. It’s that time of the year – Election Day. Every year, Yeshiva World News receives emails from Frum Jewish candidates who have little chance of winning but ask for coverage by YWN. This year, because I have reluctantly accepted the role of YWN’s senior political commentator, I have agreed to not only write a re-cap of who is Frum and running for office in New York City, but also of their odds of success.
Candidate: Yosef Hayon
Running against: Assemblyman Steve Cymbrowitz
Odds of winning: 1 in 10.
Mr. Hayon is a young conservative republican who is married with children and wrote YWN to correct a story that described him as being active in politics his whole life insisting instead that he is a newbie. That is exactly why he is not likely to win today. The best thing that Hayon has going for him is that he is running against a candidate that is out of touch with the community. However, Hayon has raised little money, has very little name recognition and hasn’t even basic experience like serving on a community board. What’s more, there is no evidence that Hayon has any get out the vote operation today.
Bottom line: Nice guy. But nice guys finish last.
Success for candidate: Hayon Breaking 40%. If he does that, he’ll have two
years to raise money and run a real campaign against Cymbrowitz in 2012.
Candidate: Menachem Raitport
Running Against: Assemblyman Karim Camara
Odds of winning: 1 in 100
Mr. Raitport is a well-known local butcher who is a stalwart of his crown heights community and is running against an Assemblyman who is even popular in the Lubavitch community that Raitport is from. The problem: his Tea Party brand of politics simply hasn’t caught on in the district that he seeks to represent.
Bottom line: Raitport should plan on opening his store, Crown Kosher, on Wednesday.
Success for Candidate: Getting most Lubavitchers to vote for him. That would undermine the power of the Crown Heights PAC and make Raitport a player in his own right.
Candidate: Avraham Rosenberg
Running Against: Senator Carl Kruger
Odds of winning: 1 in 100,000
Mr. Rosenberg is a 19 year old Touro College student who is a Republican but is running on the Conservative party line. Why isn’t he running on the Republican line? Because apparently he couldn’t figure out how to get on the line and the Republicans refused to give it to him. Oh, did I mention that as of ten days ago (the most important final stretch in any election) Senator Calr Kruger had $2,075,512.80 in his campaign coffers and Mr. Rosenberg had $0?
Bottom line: Rosenberg is running this campaign as a class project. Final Grade: “F.”
Success for Candidate: Graduating College.
Finally, there are three other Frum candidates on the ballot who will actually win. The first is Assemblyman Dov Hikind. Despite some discontent with the Assemblyman, no legitimate candidate has challenged him. However, after several of high-profile candidates that he has endorsed recently have lost, Hikind must win at least 80% of the vote in order to prove that he still has a respectable following in his district.
The second Frum candidate is Assemblyman David Weprin. His real race was in the Democratic primary against perennial candidate Bob Friedrich where Weprin won a decisive victory. He faces only token opposition tomorrow from a no-name Republican and will win big today.
The final Frum candidate on the ballot is Councilman David Greenfield. Greenfield, who won a landslide victory just eight months ago in a special election, must run again today because of an oddity in the City’s election law. In a sign of just how popular Mr. Greenfield is, no one even tried running against him.
Jewish Politics is a new opinion column by veteran political strategist Daniel Miller. The views and opinions reflected herein are solely of Mr. Miller and are not necessarily those of Yeshiva World News.