Sunday, December 2, 2001

Not, We the People, WE THE MACHINE

"While not 100% accurate - the party machine occasionally does lose - Feldman reveals the contempt in which pols hold the principle of an independent judiciary. Not surprisingly, ex-politicians, county bosses and district leaders clutter the bench. The old saw that there are only three ways to leave elective office - indictment, death or a judgeship - isn't far off the mark.

After a comprehensive review, the Daily News has concluded that of the city's roughly 180 elected Supreme Court justices and surrogates, at least 89, virtually half, are ill-chosen or unfit. The judiciary may disagree, but this finding is based on a large body of fact.

Who are the judge makers? They're people like Jeffrey Feldman, executive director of the Brooklyn Democratic organization and husband of an elected judge. Feldman once boasted, "We haven't lost a judicial seat in over 100 years." He didn't mean "we, the people." He meant "we, the clubhouse." That says it all." - Daily News, Editorial, December 2, 2001

Wednesday, August 1, 2001

Judge Sweeney and Nadelson Insects

"One reason that Roper's candidacy for district attorney has raised the special ire of the county Democratic party is that she circulated her petitions along with two insurgent candidates for Brooklyn Civil Court - Peter Sweeney and Eileen Nadelson - who would challenge the party's picks for the court.

If you have an insect flying around the room, and it has bitten you twice, said Jeff Feldman, counsel for the Brooklyn Democratic Party, 'then you do something about it.'" - Daily News, august 1, 2001
(Both Peter Sweeney and Eileen Nadelson beat feldman's county backed candidates and were elected to the Brooklyn Civil Court.)

Friday, May 4, 2001

Blocking Candidates From the Ballot

"The Democratic State Committee is to decide whether to resurrect the language of a state law that a federal appeals court struck down as unconstitutional last year, and make it a rule of the party.

The law required that in each legislative district, anyone collecting signatures to get a candidate on a primary ballot must be a resident of that district. The provision made it hard for anyone who was not backed by the party establishment to circulate petitions, strengthening the control of party leaders.

Democrats can't chide Republicans for trying to block Senator McCain from the ballot, and then turn around and try to erect ballot roadblocks to candidates in their own parties," said Gene Russianoff, a lawyer with the New York Public Interest Research Group, which has asked the party not to adopt the rule.

Mr. Feldman said the rule was not meant to block candidates, and added that letting anyone collect signatures would allow those outside a district to work against a lawmaker." - New York Times, May 4, 2001