As an American, I live in a congressional district.
But not so as you’d notice.
I live in the 27thDistrict of New York, represented most recently by a guy who’s on a COVID deferment from federal prison.
He’s been out of office for most of a year. He was under indictment for most of the year before that. And before that, he just sucked. Good grandstander, nicely starched shirts, useless as tits on a boar hog.
He followed not long after another millionaire named Chris who had to quit after posting a picture of his moobs on Twitter, proving that he didn’t know anything more about pushups than he knew about social media.
In there somewhere was a nice Democrat lady who actually came around, and Tom Reynolds, who was the last real congressperson we had. Before him was Bill Paxon, who was going to be president by about now, and sometime back in the day Jack Kemp, a great man, in spite of his time in the CFL.
But lately, it’s been nobody.
And now we get to vote.
In some odd convergence of elections and political deals, my neighbors and I will get to vote in an election and a primary on the same day, and decide who we want to go to Congress now, and who we want on the ballot in November.
To be honest, I am so jaded by the posturing of the Democrats and the venality of the Republicans that I don’t really care which way it turns out. I am one of the most conservative people on the planet, and I believe the Democrats are screwing this country into the ground. But the whole process has been so corrupt for so long, and I have become so accustomed to not having genuine congressional representation , that I despair of anything useful coming out of this.
There’s a part of me that thinks it’s all a joke – on us.
Here are the players.
Nate McMurray is the Democrat. You’d swear he’s AOC’s taller, paler, pissed-off brother. Defeated two years ago, he is still scolding the district for not embracing his progressive omniscience. Campaigning in a district with a very conservative, very Republican majority, his approach is to make it painfully clear that he hates conservatives and Republicans, and that they are idiots.
Chris Jacobs is the Republican. He’s rich.
I’d tell you more about him, but that wouldn’t be relevant.
McMurray and Jacobs face one another in a special election to fill out the remainder of the term of Chris Felon.
That’s one vote. The other vote is a primary.
That’s because of Beth Parlato.
She’s also conservative. Real conservative. Like actually believes in stuff conservative. And when Republican Party bosses gave the nomination to Richie Rich, because of his qualification, she didn’t think that was right, fair or in the best interest of the district or country.
So she filed the paperwork and forced a Republican primary to see who will be the party’s candidate for the seat in the November general election.
That made it Chris Jacobs, rich guy, versus Beth Parlato, actual Republican.
He had millions of dollars, but she had a sprawling district full of working-class Republicans a little tired of having their seat at the congressional table sold to a series of rich guys out of Buffalo.
That didn’t look good for Richie Rich.
Enter Stefan Mychajliw, whose name pronounces a lot easier than it spells.
He’s a young guy on the make out of Erie County. And his entry into the race, as a second conservative candidate, will help elect a very large political donor for decades to come. Jacobs can lose to a conservative, but he can’t lose to two conservatives who split the vote. Which leads me to cynically suspect that “Mychajliw” roughly translates to “stalking horse.”
Repeating for those still awake: Next Tuesday, everyone in my congressional district will choose between Chris Jacobs and Nate McMurray to be a congressman for the rest of the year, and Republicans will additionally vote in a primary to see who the GOP candidate for this seat will be in November, choosing between Chris Jacobs, Beth Parlato and Stefan Mychajliw.
Here’s how I’m voting.
In the primary, I’m voting for Beth Parlato, on the simple basis that I’m a conservative and she’s a conservative. She believes in what I believe.
In the special election, I’m not voting.
I’ll let my neighbors decide.
On the outcome, it doesn’t matter and I don’t care. This seat at this time will not tip control of the House, nor will it make any impact whatsoever on the work or legislation of the government. It boils down to nothing more than bragging rights for two guys and their political parties.
If Richie Rich wins, his years of feckless public service will simply begin six months sooner. If Nate McMurray wins, he’ll get a gold star for his resume and maybe Nancy Pelosi will slide us some pork, trying to win points for her boy. Whoever wins, his party will play it for 30 seconds of prognosticatory publicity for the November election. Whoever wins, it’s six meaningless months for the rest of us.
And at the end of six months, the person in the seat will be the winner of the Republican primary. In November, this district, solidly pro-Trump and anti-Cuomo, is going to elect the Republican candidate, no matter who that is. And that person will then hang fire for two years seeing what desecration of democracy redistricting turns out to be.
All I know is that I’m not voting in the special election, and that I’m voting for Beth Parlato in the primary.
And that, payback being what it is, my kids have zero chance of ever getting a nomination to a service academy.