Saturday, September 11, 2010

Joe Fox for NYS Assembly

Dear Friends -

Next Tuesday, September 14th, there is a primary. In many ways, it’s not an exciting Democratic primary, as the Governor’s nomination is uncontested and the Attorney General race has a non-descript field of five. However, for those of us in the 28th Assembly District, this may be the most important Democratic primary in many years. That is because my good friend Joe Fox has taken a courageous action by challenging the incumbent, Andrew Hevesi. I have never been involved in a local political campaign before, but I am strongly supporting Joe Fox in this primary. For the reasons stated below, I am asking you to support Joe as well.

Approximately five years ago, our Assemblyman Michael Cohen abruptly resigned, under mysterious circumstances. Shortly thereafter, it was announced that 31 year old Andrew Hevesi would be nominated for the seat, and would be on the ballot in a “special election”. This was an orchestrated political maneuver, which essentially gave our Assembly seat to an inexperienced paralegal, whose only “qualifications” for the job were being the son of criminally convicted political figure Alan Hevesi.

Andrew Hevesi has never had to actually RUN for his seat. He was re-elected in exactly the same way he initially came to his office, being put on the ballot without challenge. Up until this year, nobody has had the courage or the support or the qualifications to contest the “powers that be” for this seat.Had Andrew Hevesi taken this seat and actually done something useful with it, I would support him, notwithstanding the undemocratic way he obtained the seat. But the fact is, he has done NOTHING with this opportunity, other than continue to be part of the problem in Albany. We have a disgraceful State legislature, which perpetuates every bad aspect of cronyism and corrupt politics. Our Assemblyman has not taken a leadership position on ANY meaningful issue or legislation during his five years in office. He speaks through “spokespeople”, and takes his lead from the “higher ups” on every important issue.

If my interest were strictly “anti-incumbent, I would not be writing. I want to place this primary in a positive light, by telling you about Joe Fox…………..I know Joe personally for over 30 years. He is a successful attorney in private practice, concentrating primarily in real estate, business transactions and bankruptcy law. He knows what it means to start and grow a business, and he knows what it means to help businesses and individuals who have REAL problems. He is down to earth, approachable, and effective in everything he does…………He is a homeowner in Forest Hills, and with his wife Helaine has raised two great children who are in their early twenties. He knows about the issues facing our schools, about the costs of higher education and its impact on families, and about employment issues facing our community………….He has been active in MANY local community issues, and it was never with an eye on politics, it was always because he wanted to use his skills to HELP…………He is not a political neophyte, as he was involved in economic development during the Koch administration. He left the political arena at that time, to pursue private law practice.

To say that he is NOT a professional politician is actually high praise, and at the same time, he is not some kid who is going to take marching orders from others. He will look out for US, first and foremost. He has decided that NOW is the time for him to give back, and to return to the political arena, precisely because he has something worthwhile to offer. HE IS WELL QUALIFIED and HE WANTS TO SERVE.This is the criteria which should be used to evaluate a candidate. Our Assembly seat should not be “given” to someone who is not qualified and doesn’t seem to want to serve.In a local primary race, the turnout is likely to be small. I live and work in this district, and my sense is this election will be very close. EVERY vote will count!!! If you have any questions about this letter, or about Joe Fox’s candidacy, please call me at the number above, or on my cell phone 718-216-5663. Please vote in this important election.


Barry Seidel