NY13 Blog; Retaking NY-13 from Rep. Vito Fossella

Following the corruption, ineffectiveness and hypocrisy of Rep. Vito Fossella.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Vito Fossella's Giuliani Problem

I was preparing a post on Rudy's demise and histortic departure from his presidential race when I came across a similar post on the Albany Project that went a step further and clarified the implications of Rudy dropping out on the state. Via the NY Daily News, h/t to the Albany Project;

The effects of Rudy Giuliani's departure from the presidential race are rippling into the upcoming battle for control of the state Senate.

Republican state lawmakers banked on the former mayor's White House bid to stimulate the party base when New Yorkers head to the polls and stave off Democratic rule at the Capitol.


Baruch College political science Prof. Doug Muzzio agreed Republican domination of the Senate is jeopardized by the double whammy of Giuliani's quitting the race and Clinton's potential ascension as the Democratic presidential nominee.

While the article is focusing on the control of the state senate the result is just as bad for Rep. Fossella. He endorsed Rudy Giuliani, in spite of the International Association of Fire Fighters opposition to his candidacy, with some hopes that New York City's favorite Republican son would be atop the ticket driving Republicans to the polls. Now not only will Rudy not be on the ballot but now Sen. Clinton may top the Democratic side doing the opposite of his desires, driving Democrats who may only be interested in the Presidential race to go to the polls and vote, potentially voting for the Democratic Congressional candidate as well.

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Democracy for America

Busy week for me so posts are light.

Previously we asked you to go vote for Steve Harrison on Democracy for America's (DFA) Grassroot All Star Contest. Tonight I have two follow up suggestions;

1) If you haven't already join DFA's email list. This is a great organization that helps candidates run for office, organizes grassroot activists and is an all around favorite organization of mine (that counts right?)

Join DFA's email list

2) Join Democracy for NYC. DFNYC is the local chapter of DFA. They have previously held a meet and greet with Steve. The group does endorse local candidates (by asking their email list to vote) and has a large following of local activists who regularly canvass and phone bank passionately for candidates they believe in. Join their email list and stay up to date with their activities and check out a link up if there is one near you.

Join DFNYC's email list

note: Domenic Recchia does not appear to have applied or been nominated for the Grassroots All Star Contest and it is not clear if DFNYC will hold an event with him once he officially starts running.

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Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Fossella's 4Q FEC filing

4Q 2007
Net Q: $304,453
Net: $700,967
CoH: $250,501
Debt: $28,000

• $79,250 of Rep. Vito Fossella's CoH is restricted to the General Election.
• Fossella paid off $55,000 worth of debt
• Fossella spent $104,237, the highest expenditure rate of a non election year 4Q

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Monday, January 28, 2008

1733 Days Later

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Saturday, January 26, 2008

Vito Fossella's Giuliani Problem

The NYTimes has a devastating piece on the realities of Rudy deciding to place the emergency command center at the World Trade Center despite experts recommendation against it;

The New York Police Department produced a detailed analysis in 1998 opposing plans by the city to locate its emergency command center at the World Trade Center, but the Giuliani administration overrode those objections. The command center later collapsed from damage in the Sept. 11 terrorist attack.

“Seven World Trade Center is a poor choice for the site of a crucial command center for the top leadership of the City of New York,” a panel of police experts, which was aided by the Secret Service, concluded in a confidential Police Department memorandum.

The memorandum, which has not been previously disclosed, cited a number of “significant points of vulnerability.” Those included: the building’s public access, the center’s location on the 23rd floor, a 1,200-gallon diesel fuel supply for its generator, a large garage and delivery bays, the building’s history as a terrorist target, and its placement above and adjacent to a Consolidated Edison substation that provided much of the power for Lower Manhattan.

This is the man Rep. Vito Fossella has endorsed and wants to be President of the United States. So when you hear Fossella spouting security concerns and the need to continue his war in Iraq because we are safer ask yourself (or him for that matter) why he is putting politics above those concerns? Does he support recommendations of experts or does he support Giuliani for the political gain he receives.

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DFA adds Steve Harrison to Grassroot All Star Contest

Democracy for America, a wonderful grassroots political organization has added Steve Harrison to their Grassroot All Stars contest. This isn't just an endorsement from DFA either, this is training and exposure to their massive email list for the winner of the conest;

The DFA Grassroots All-Star isn't your typical endorsement.

The winner earns the financial support of our 675,000 nationwide membership, hundreds of volunteer hours by local members on the ground, and the media buzz generated by our national spotlight. Perhaps the biggest prize of all, the DFA Training Academy will train DFA members and campaign staff in the winner's district making sure everyone learns the skills to win.

You can vote for Steve here. Consider also rounding out your ballot by choosing the other two NY Congressional candidates Jon Powers and Dan Maffei.

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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Vito Fossella on sky rocketing oil prices

via VetoFossella.com;

Pointing to the ongoing oil price crisis, Congressman Vito Fossella (R-NY13) today sounded an alarm that the ... Administration's lack of an energy policy could produce similar problems this summer with increased electricity rates and power outages.

"Unless production increases significantly, there could be a problem this summer," Fossella said. "If you thought we had difficulties with home heating oil and gas prices this winter, just wait. A surge in electricity rates and power outages may be just around the corner because the Administration lacks a clear and comprehensive energy policy. Today we are sending a wake-up call to the Energy Department and others that Americans could be hit with escalating electricity rates this summer. Its failure to act following OPEC's production cutbacks last year and its subsequent decision to ignore our warnings of price surges for home heating oil and gas have mired us in this current predicament." [Rep. Vito Fossella]

These words from Rep. Vito Fossella were issued in a press release, March 23, 2000 criticizing President Clinton for his "lack of an energy policy" as oil was approaching $30 a barrel. Today oil flirts with $100 a barrel and Rep. Vito Fossella has not one negative comment to say about this administration or their energy policy or lack thereof. Certainly Vito Fossella is no hypocrite and he would not play partisan games, right? Maybe you should revisit Fossella's thoughts on the war;

"The President has a responsibility to articulate America's long-term strategy before placing even one soldier in harm's way. He has asked the Congress and the American people to follow his lead, but he has shrouded in darkness where that road will take us. Leading military and foreign policy experts have questioned why the Administration won't define the mission and what plans are in place for us to withdraw."

"The President must have a frank discussion with the American people as to what our military's mission is, when victory will be achieved and how it will be achieved."

Rep. Vito Fossella, April 30, 1999. His criticisms today of this war and this President's strategy can not be found as he refuses to address the topic to the point that the Iraq War is not even mentioned on his campaign website.

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And then there were five

Rep. James Walsh, R-NY-25 has announced he will forgo seeking a hard re-election battle and retire at the end of his term. This now brings the total number of Republican Congressional members from New York state to five; Rep. King, McHugh, Reynolds, Kuhl, and Fossella. Out of 29 Congressional seats 23 are controlled by Democrats (Walsh's has no incumbent), all but two practically safe from any challenge. Walsh's district is even more Democratic leaning than Fossella's at a PVI D+3 meaning this is a likely pick up for Dan Maffei the 2006 challenger, giving Democrats 24 of 29 seats easily. In 2006 Democrats picked up three seats with Rep. Hall, Gilibrand and Arcuri. Republicans could not mount a serious candidate against either Spitzer or Clinton statewide. It is a good trend that does not bode well for Fossella. New York State is trending blue and proving to be a difficult place to be a Republican. New Yorkers just are not buying their policies and realizing substantively they have little in common with them.

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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Fund Raising Widget

Over on the right side below those numerous questionable donations Vito Fossella continues to take, I have added a new widget from maplight.org that will track the contribution totals for Rep. Fossella, Stephen Harrison and eventually Domenic Recchia assuming he has filed to run. Certainly I will bring you up to date totals once the quarterly reports are made public, but should you later need a quick source to see how much money each candidate has raised it is there for you.

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Vito Fossella's recent legislative votes

S-MINER Act, HR 2768
Passed (214-199, 17 Not Voting)

The House passed the S-MINER Act in an attempt to improve mine safety standards.

Rep. Fossella DIDN'T VOTE

National Defense Authorization Act, FY2008, HR 4986
Passed (369-46, 15 Not Voting)

On Wednesday the House approved a modified version of the defense authorization bill, which addressed concerns that caused the President to unexpectedly veto the original bill last month.

Rep. Fossella DIDN'T VOTE

HOPE VI Improvement and Reauthorization Act, HR 3524
Passed (271-130, 29 Not Voting)

The House passed this bill to reauthorize the HOPE VI grant program that revitalizes severely distressed public housing.

Rep. Fossella DIDN'T VOTE

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1727 Days Later

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Thursday, January 17, 2008

Will Recchia out raise Fossella?

The story coming into this week was whether or not Rep. Fossella would be able to overcome his downward spiral he calls fund raising. The story may now be if Domenic Recchia will out raise him in 4Q. In 3Q Fossella reported $98,735 and from Tom's article yesterday we hear Recchia claiming $220,000 for his 4Q take. You probably would have to go back to Fossella's 1997 election to find anyone who out raised him or came close in any quarter. [I will double check this tomorrow]

Should this happen I imagine this seat will quickly be thrust into some national focus. According the the guys at Swing State Project only 12 Democratic candidates out raised their incumbent Republican opponent in 3Q.

Fossella cannot be sleeping well.

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Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Harrison and Recchia's fund raising numbers

Stephen Harrison and Domenic Recchia spoke to the Staten Island Democratic Association last night. Tom gives us all the details. The interesting take away is that they both hinted at their fund raising;

Harrison, who said he'd raised $110,000 for the race, contended he was the best candidate because he'd gotten 43 percent of the vote against Fossella (R-Staten Island/Brooklyn).

Recchia also argued he was better able to raise money for the race, adding he has raised $220,000 so far.

If these turn out to be accurate this would simply be amazing. Recchia potentially could surpass Fossella's fund raising from the same time period, a remarkable feat. Both Harrison and Recchia would also more than likely position themselves ahead of Fossella in the important category of 'cash on hand'. The best part of it though would simply be the reaction from Fossella's campaign and remarkable spin they would attempt to put on this, something like 'Vito is not worried about his opponents, he is busy in Washington protecting the families of Staten Island from tax increases, voting against health insurance for children, and pandering to President Bush.'

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Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Steve Harrison: Success!

This in from Steve's campaign today, and note the anticipation build up with soon to be announced endorsements;

We did it!

We've had a tremendous first quarter!

Our fundraising success will allow us to bring our message to the voters of this district. Most importantly, every dollar we've raised is a vote of confidence in the ideals we share. More than ever, I'm proud to be your candidate.

With your help, and in light of the strong endorsement from Frank Barbaro (and others to be announced soon!), we're well on our way to a November victory. Together, we're going to bring a real Democrat back to Washington!

Again, thank you so much for all your help.

Warmest regards,


Steve Harrison for Congress

note: As always if you have emails or announcements from any other campaigns feel free to pass them along and I will try to post them.


Monday, January 14, 2008

January 17th Fund Raiser for Steve Harrison

via Daily Gotham;

DFNYC's Merle McEldowney invites you to an event in support of Stephen Harrison, Candidate for US Congress.

January 17, 2008 – 6 to 9 PM
2166 Broadway 16F
(between 76 & 77 streets)

On Thursday, January 17th, from 6:00 pm - 9:00 Merle is having a party in my home to support and honor Steve Harrison, candidate for the US Congress in the 13th District. From her invitation:

I feel strongly about this race. Steve is a person who reflects all that I want to see in a representative. His values are consistently well thought out, and come from a fundamentally humane base. I think you will like him as much as I do.

As the Congressional representative for the 13th District, Steve will work to bring integrity and reform to Washington and get the representation that district deserves. In last year's race Steve nearly defeated Fossella in the district's closest election in decades. The New York Times, major unions, and our top Democratic leaders endorsed Steve.

Despite the relatively conservative leanings of his district, Steve ha has a clear shot of winning -- if we all stand together, Currently the district is represented by the last remaining Republican in the New York congressional delegation, Vito Fossella.

The suggested donation is $100. But you will be welcome for whatever you feel comfortable giving. Every contribution is a vote of confidence in Steve's Candidacy. That said, after hearing Steve speak you may feel moved by the spirit and Warren Buffet -- and we won't stop you from giving more.

If you cannot make the party, but would like to support Steve, please visit his web site at steveharrisonforcongress.com or enclose a check on the form provided.

So come to my house on the 17th, share some refreshments, some mulled cider made with Rum from the Dominican Republic.

I look forward to catching up with each of you personally.

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Truth13 on Vito Fossella and Mortgage Crisis


STATEN ISLAND, NY ­­ According to Reuters [1], Republican Rep. Vito Fossella (NY­13) the Congressman representing Staten Island and Brooklyn, is introducing the Homeowners Assistant Act. Rep. Fossella’s bill will allow homeowners with a poor credit history, affected by the subprime crisis to tap into their retirement accounts to bail themselves out of trouble.

Richard Marini of Truth13, a group of concerned citizens residing in the 13th district, said "Vito Fossella obviously does not understand the severity of the issue. His answer to the mortgage foreclosure crisis is to shift the focus away from the irresponsible lending practices of his industry campaign contributors, and raid struggling homeowners’ retirement funds."

According to The Staten Island Advance [2], AARP spokesman Jim Dau warns "homeowners at risk should understand that tapping in early into retirement savings compounds into a bigger loss."

A New York State Senate report on subprime lending stated Staten Island's South Shore had the highest rate of foreclosures [3]. The report which covered the five boroughs as well as Nassau and Westchester counties showed that the 10314 zip code had the greatest number of foreclosure filings. The second largest area was Eltingville and Annadale. A U.S. Senate committee reported [4] that 1,472 homes would be in foreclosure on Staten Island. Over one million homeowners nationwide will be forced into foreclosure over the next 6 years at a cost estimated at $120 billion dollars [5] but industry experts say the cost would be significantly more then that.

“An important aspect of this is that not only will these people lose their homes, but any loss to the lenders will come out of our pockets too. The lenders will not suffer their own bad risk taking. The cost will be passed on in the form of a government bailouts to protect corporate interests, which in turn, will be passed on to the public in the form of taxes” said George Rosquist, a member of Truth13.

On November 15, 2007, Vito Fossella protected his lending industry campaign contributors by voting against a bill (H.R. 3915, 11/25/2007). The bill would have required the disclosure of an estimated interest rate (APR), the maximum it can adjust, the total estimated monthly payment and what percentage it is of a borrower's monthly income. This bill would have reformed consumer mortgage
practices and provided accountability, with licensing and registration requirements for residential mortgage originators and minimum standards for consumer mortgage loans.

Steve Schwall of Truth13, said “If Fossella really wants to help the problem, why not lobby for an investigation into the business practices of the mortgage businesses and brokers who made so much money on these loans, fully knowing that most of them would default? Fines for fraud violations could be applied to a fund for the victims. I don't expect to see that from Vito, since he receives much of his campaign money from banks and financial industry services and probably would not want to hurt his friends.”

According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Federal Election Committee records show that since 1989, Rep. Fossella has received more than $1.7 million dollars in contributions from the Real Estate, Finance and Insurance sector [6]. On December 13th, 2007 Ameriquest, a member of the National Associated of Home Builders which has contributed over $17,000 to Rep. Fossella [7] since 1990, mailed checks to 25,000 of eligible homeowners in New York State [8] alone as part of a settlement agreement [9] that resolved an investigation by the Attorney Generals and banking/finance regulators implicating Ameriquest and other affiliated companies that had engaged in various unlawful mortgage lending practices from January 1, 1999 through December 31, 2005. Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo said “Ameriquest both exploited borrowers and contributed to today's staggering crisis in the mortgage industry” [10].

About Truth13: Founded in 2007, Truth 13 is a group residents of New York's 13th Congressional district in Staten Island and Brooklyn who are concerned about how their Congressman is failing to represent his constituents. Their mission is to educate voters of the District to Fossella’s voting record and his dependence on campaign financing from the banking and other industries.

1. http://www.reuters.com/article/fundsFundsNews/idUSN1042665720071210
2. http://www.silive.com/news/advance/index.ssf?/base/news/119729166355850xml&coll=1&thispage=1
3. http://www.silive.com/news/advance/index.ssf?/base/news/1188726334318800.xml&coll=1&thispage=1
4. http://www.nydailynews.com/news/2007/10/26/2007­10­26_schumer_warns_of_15000_home_foreclosures.html
5. http://money.cnn.com/2007/04/13/real_estate/subprimebailout_cost.moneymag/index.htm
6. http://www.opensecrets.org/politicians/allsector.asp?CID=N00000983
7. http://www.opensecrets.org/orgs/recips.asp?ID=D000000086&Type=P&Cycle=A&Sort=A&State=NY
8. http://www.oag.state.ny.us/press/2007/jul/jul12b_07.html
9. http://www.ameriquestmultistatesettlement.com
10. http://www.oag.state.ny.us/press/2007/dec/dec24a_07.html


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Sunday, January 13, 2008

1718 Days Later

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Saturday, January 12, 2008

More Rudy

Poor Vito. If only Giuliani could wrap up the Republican nomination Fossella would probably gain several percentage points in his re-election attempt. But he just keeps getting bad news;

...the [Conservative] party is likely to give an early nod to Fred Thompson if he manages to "break through" in South Carolina.

and more bad news;

CNN has learned that top staff members of Rudy Giuliani's presidential campaign were asked to work without pay for the month of January, and perhaps longer, so that campaign resources could be focused on the Florida Republican presidential primary.

Two sources in the campaign, speaking on condition of anonymity, insisted the campaign was not in dire financial straits. A third campaign source, however, said "things are starting to get tight" and that "it was more telling than asking" the senior staff to forgo paychecks beginning the first of the year.

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Thursday, January 10, 2008

Voters Desire Change

Stephen Harrison in a short piece nicely ties the "change" theme running through the Presidential campaigns to the larger and hopefully local issue of voter discontent;

...the overall message was clear: American voters are restless and want change.


Attorney and civic leader Steve Harrison, a Democratic candidate to unseat Republican Congressman Vito Fossella, is watching the presidential race closely. "The results show that this is a tight race. The pundits and pollsters are being proven wrong. Something happened in the 24 hours between Obama's predicted win in New Hampshire and Clinton's victory. And that's because an enlivened electorate is looking for change. It will be a wild and wooly season."


Vito Fossella is out of Money

I have covered Rep. Vito Fossella's financial hardships thus far in his campaign in several posts;

Fossella in Financial Trouble and Denial
Fossella in Financial Trouble and Denial, part II
Fossella in Financial Trouble and Denial, part III

Now is the summation of those diaries leading up to his 4Q FEC filings which looks like it will be out Monday or Tuesday. Vito Fossella was broke at the end of 3Q 2007. Broke.

The Congressman's filings show $50,286 Cash on Hand but further analysis of these numbers show that $50,050 are restricted to General Election spending meaning he is unable to touch that money until after the Primary Election in September 2008. Fossella is simultaneously raising money for his Primary Election and his General Election. The General Election money though can't be touched no matter what financial hardships might fall on him.

At the end of September, the last month we have financial records for, Rep. Vito Fossella had a total of $236. There are no zeros missing from that. Two hundred and thirty-six dollars. Considering he has to pay utilities, rent and salaries to name several large expenditures he would need to put all his initial fund raising of 4Q immediately to bills. Not the way you want to run a re-election campaign.

Here is Vito Fossella's $50,050 restricted to his General Election;
Gina Addeo, $2,300 (4/30/07)

Geradri Campitiello, $2,300 (07/31/07)

John Celiberti, Jr., $2,300 (04/30/07)

Charles DeMarco, $2,100 (03/19/07)

Mario DiBiase, $1,000 (03/19/07)

Dennis Hansen, $2,300 (06/21/07)

Robert Golden, $1,650 (03/19/07)

Andrew Leider, $2,300 (02/23/07)

Raymond Masucci, $2,300 (06/30/07)

Michael Miglino, $2,300 (06/14/07)

Clare Miley, $2,300 (04/30/07)

Maureen Moore, $2,100 (03/19/07)

Alice Noce, $200 (02/13/07)

Lisa Noce, $200 (02/13/07)

Anthony Santo, $2,300 (03/20/07)

Susan Scimore, $2,300 (06/14/07)

Mufeed Siad, $2,300 (06/29/07)

Michael Sulivan, $2,300 (04/30/07)

Anthony Tranchina, $2,300 (03/03/07)

George Wade, $2,300 (03/19/07)

Stuart Waldman, $2,300 (03/30/07)

Harold Weinberg, $700 (03/30/07)

Edward Welsh, $700 (06/04/07)

Jamshad Wyne, $2,300 (06/30/07)

Joseph Zahriyeh, $2,300 (06/29/07)

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Monday, January 07, 2008

More Rudy

via Liz Benjamin;

Panicked by Rudy Giuliani's tanking presidential campaign, New York Republicans are contemplating abandoning him in favor of a man who ditched them months ago.

"Rudy's downward spiral has caused enough concern that there have been conversations about whether people will continue to support him or cut their losses now and jump on the Bloomberg bandwagon," said one GOP insider who has been privy to the talks.

Rudy finished 6th out of 7 in Iowa.
Rudy finished tied for last in Wyoming.
Rudy is likely to finish 4th or 5th out of 6 in Hew Hampshire.

That large drop off of Rudy's trend line is not just the chances of him winning the nomination free falling, it is also the downward trend of Rep. Fossella having a Republican nominee on top of the ticket with strong NY ties who would have driven Republican voters to the polls this fall.

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LTE: Subsidize the wealthy

A recent LTE;

I read "Senate defers paid-for tax cut," and once again I am taken back by how ignorant Republicans are. The alternative minimum tax, a tax meant for wealthy people who paid nothing, is now hitting the middle class. Instead of righting that inequity and paying for it by taxing wealthy corporations that moved offshore for the sole purpose of evading taxes, Republicans have sided with the corporate thieves. Your elected Republicans are saying that you and your families are worthless trash and you continue to grovel at the feet.


This trash you voted for runs up debt, steals trillions and then wants to cut education, Social Security, children's health benefits, veterans' benefits and any other program that helps the people of this nation. Survival of the fittest, but subsidize the wealthy.


Sunday, January 06, 2008

Veto Fossella's embrace of Rudy Giuliani

This is the man Rep. Fossella wants to be president of our country;

Before Saturday's GOP debate, several members of the 9/11 recovery effort will be stationed outside the forum petitioning the former New York City Mayor to discuss the mishandled health safety issues following the 2001 terrorist attacks.

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1711 Days Later

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Friday, January 04, 2008

Fossella in Financial Trouble and Denial, part III

Today we are focusing on Rep. Fossella's burn rate of the minimal cash he is bringing in. While his fund raising rate is well below where he wants to be, the bigger problem is he is spending most if not all of it. In fact he spent more money than he raised in the last quarter. So far a lot of his expenditures are going to pay down his outrageous debt he incurred in his election against Stephen Harrison, which reinforces us running strong candidates every election (not just after redistricting).

Below is a chart of non election year expenditures by Rep. Fossella's campaign for the past three cycles. It is broken down per quarter per cycle. Notice that so far Q2 and Q3 have had the highest rate of expenditures in any of his non election years. Once we see his Q4 filings we will see if this trend of cash burn continues. If so, yet another sign that Rep. Fossella's campaign is in more trouble than he will admit.

as noted in the previous segment, up until 2001 FEC financial reports were done twice a year so comparisons on a quarterly break down are not available

As I have been saying Rep. Fossella needs to report at least $200,000 in contributions in his Q4 filing (due out in about a week). But when we look at increasing burn rates still four quarters from the election (he spent $150,000 last quarter) raising $200,000 will barely equate to any actual saved cash for his campaign and mean his campaign is in more trouble than he is admitting (or realizes).

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Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Fossella in Financial Trouble and Denial, part II

In last night's post I was a little too hasteful in my thinking that FEC reports would be available later this week. That is not the case. They will be available closer to January 15th. But there is plenty of analysis to keep you occupied;

Yesterday's post quoted Georgea Kaye, Fossella's spokesperson as saying the committee raised between $1.2 and 1.8 million each election cycle. Either Rep. Fossella and his staffers are ignorant of their own past or they are just putting out lies hoping no one calls them on it. Totals for his past election cycles;

2000 - $1.285 million
2002 - $758k
2004 - $1.124 m
2006 - $1.488 m

So two of his campaign cycles amassed between $1.2 and 1.8 million. Although they never topped $1.5 million so that $1.8 million figure is rather strange. Of course two of the other campaigns did not even total $1.2 million. Maybe they round up? A lot.

Next it seems ambitious to say that based off of past fund raising production that this year they again will raise at least $1.2 million. With $383,000 in net contributions Rep. Fossella would need to bring in $204,000 in each quarter just to reach $1.2 million for the entire cycle. This is how he has done thus far this cycle per quarter:

4Q 2006 - $0
1Q 2007 - $133,000
2Q 2007 - $151,000
3Q 2007 - $99,000

To wrap this up unless Rep. Fossella pulls in over $200,000 in contributions in his 4Q FEC filing he is failing to meet his own minimum expectations. This is something he has not been able to do once during this election cycle. This will be a telling sign of how much trouble his campaign might be in.

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LTE: Fossella's NO vote of air traffic legislation

An LTE in the Advance;

Mr. Donner also fails to address two of the major points of my letter, that airlines must provide basic needs for airline passengers during long delays and that the Department of Transportation collect and publish data on airline performance. I guess even a spinmeister like Mr. Donner would find it difficult to explain away Mr. Fossella's opposition to these points.

I suppose that we will have to wait for this year's debates between Vito Fossella and the Democratic candidate Steve Harrison to get Mr. Fossella to defend his votes. Let's hope Mr. Fossella doesn't try to duck the debates again like he tried to do in 2006.

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Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Fossella in Financial Trouble and Denial

Consider these unfortunate situations for Rep. Fossella, at the same point, (August to September) the year before each of his previous elections;

* He has never been in more debt than he is now
* He has never had less cash on hand than he has now
* Only once has he had a worse third quarter of fund raising than he did this year

Yesterday marked the end of the fourth quarter (Oct-Dec) of fund raising for Fossella and is going to be quite telling. Several stories have come out highlighting his abysmal fund raising. Then there is the denial;

This time around, Fossella’s pockets are not yet full. As of Sept. 30, the five-term incumbent had just $50,000 on hand for his presumed re-election campaign, while Harrison had already raised $37,000. Fossella’s lack of funds is due, in part, to the $209,000 in debt he accrued in 2006.

Fossella’s campaign spokeswoman, Georgea Kaye, dismissed any concerns about Fossella’s finances.

“The committee raises between $1.2 and $1.8 million every election cycle and we are on track to reach our goals this cycle as well,” said Kaye.

Fossella's lack of funds is partially due to his debt, caused by a hard race against Harrison in 2006. This accounts for his horrendous cash on hand as he pays off debts. This time during the last campaign he had nearly 11 times the amount of cash on hand. But that is not the whole story. Fossella is failing to raise the same amounts of money he has done in the past. At this point in the last campaign he had amassed nearly twice the amount of total contributions than he has done so far.

3Q 2007
Net Q: 98,735 [second lowest]
Net: 383,160
CoH: 50,286 [lowest ever]
Debt: 73,582 [highest ever]

3Q 2005
Net Q: 360,563
Net: 715,390
CoH: 538,805
Debt: 31,478

3Q 2003
Net Q: 55,900
Net: 173,151
CoH: 154,937
Debt: 1,486

3-4Q 2001 *
Net Q: 101,998
Net: 234,275
CoH: 308,739
Debt: 0

3-4Q 1999 *
Net Q: 237,047
Net: 344,309
CoH: 202,283
Debt: 5,523

* Up to 2001 Rep. Fossella was only required to submit financial reports for six month increments from July-Dec. Since 2001 he has to split that into a 3rd Quarter (July-September) and 4th Quarter (October-December) report.

Later this week we should have the FEC reports for the fourth quarter (October to December 2007) for Rep. Fossella as well as Stephen Harrison and Domenic Recchia. Unless he is able to get closer to $200k in contributions for this quarter he is likely to not be able to finish off his debt and potentially could be behind one if not two of his Democratic challengers. If this happens his campaign is officially in free fall. Bring on those 4Q numbers!

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