January 17, 2010

THE NEXT COAKLEY:

Some say Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is now vulnerable after failing to connect with voters, colleagues (Michael Mcauliff In Washington and David Saltonstall, 1/17/10, NY DAILY NEWS)

Largely because of Gillibrand's weakness, former Tennessee congressman Harold Ford - until last week a virtual unknown in New York - was able to parachute into the race and establish himself as a plausible, if longshot, possible challenger in a matter of days.

True, Gillibrand still beats Ford by a hefty 19 points, according to a Marist Poll released Friday. But for Gillibrand, the poll's more troubling number was her flimsy 24% approval rating among voters - and the 25% who had no opinion of her at all.

Many say that Gillibrand has simply failed to capture the hearts and minds of New Yorkers the way her outsized forbears - Bobby Kennedy, Pat Moynihan and Hillary Clinton - did.

"This state has a strong tradition of electing fabulous people, and I think we deserve a senator in that mold," said Maureen White, a one-time chief fundraiser for the Democratic National Committee and a Ford fan. "I don't see any incipient signs of that in Kirsten."


Posted by Orrin Judd at January 17, 2010 7:54 AM
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