New York Goobernatorial 2010

The sevensome at Hofstra University left little wiggle room for angry (he prefers “passionate” now) Republican candidate Carl Paladino and drier than uncooked rice Democrat Andrew Cuomo to let sparks fly between the two, but some of the other candidates on board–like Rent Is Too Damn High’s Jimmy McMillan and former madame Kristin Davis who wants to legalize prostitution– gave viewers (and reporters) plenty of moments to to massage out an interesting story or two.

Most news outlets chose McMillan as their head hancho news lead:

Over at the Atlantic, theyspotlighted on McMillan’s silvery mutton chops and”General Lee” facial hair combo (think an imperialist meets Mr. T) got the spotlight and earned him the support and of the American Mustache Institute.

According to the New York Post, the Flatbush resident’s rent ain’t too damn high. $800 a month and has been frozen that way since 2005.

In his defense I live in Flatbush whoop whoop!–and my rent isn’t too high either (rent controlled and living in a place for all 23 years of your life helps)

And the no fun New York Times took the more in-depth coverage approach, reporting on every single thing that happened at the debate–you know included what we were all supposed to take from the debate to make informed decisions at the polls.

News angles aside, the debate was pure political drama and here are some of the most notable quips from the then lesser-known-candidates:

“If you want to marry a shoe, I’ll marry you.”–McMillan (a nod to marriage equity)

“Asking Andrew Cuomo and Carl Paladino to end corruption is like asking an arsonist to help us put out the fires.”–Charles Barron, a Brooklyn city councilperson and former Black Panther said.

“The key difference between the M.T.A. and my former escort agency is I operated one set of books and I offered on-time and reliable service.”–brothel humor from Kristin Davis former madame (she wants to legalize prostitution)

“Businesses will leave the state faster than Carl Paladino at a gay bar.”–Davis

About an hour in, Cuomo couldn’t suppress smiling and chuckling from time to time. At one point he agreed with McMillan about the rent being too damn high.

Paladino, who stumbled and stammered through most of the debate, accidentally left early during the closing statements to look for a restroom.

I genuinely thought I was watching Saturday Night Live for a second, but then I remembered SNL just isn’t that funny anymore.

Word is, Monday’s debate may have been the only one we get and although I laughed at the cumbersome sevensome I also felt slighted. The crowded stage diluted the debate to inherently funny but shallow one-liners, left major party candidates less time to be scrutinized by the public and held accountable for their records (if they have one). Even McMillan, though I love how unpolished he is from his look and garb to his honest gab–talking about poverty, hunger, shelter and basic necessities all New Yorkers should have–served as a distraction. I mean I can’t do the dougie to a campaign song ( ha I could but there shouldn’t be a campaign song with this much swag). Ridiculous….being governor is supposed to be serious business.

But then there IS Sarah Palin…


Naima "Nai" Ramos-Chapman is the Associate Editor at Campus Progress, a dancer with Taurus Broadhurst Dance in D.C., and an aspiring visual artist (she doodles). Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @Naimaramchap.
  • I wish I grew my beard enough to be Jimmy McMillan for Halloween