This letter was published in Shawangunk Journal – November 1, 2012.
Problems With Schreibman…
Among the many factors influencing the way we vote — for a certain candidate or another — I believe the strongest are our backgrounds and personal experiences.
As I’ve written before, living for 30 years under a Communist dictatorship equipped me with sensors for detecting propaganda, staging, mind manipulation, lies, brainwashing, a “leader’s” desire for control and power, the intent to take away people’s rights. When we detect these symptoms, it doesn’t matter if one is Republican or Democrat, Conservative, Independent or non-enrolled. We need to exit the comfortable zone of party affiliation and enter the realm of right and wrong; and doing something wrong — that affects the lives of many — destroys the TRUST we must have in a candidate or elected official.
Unfortunately, in 2009, four Ulster County party chairs — Len Bernardo (Independence), Mario Catalano (Republican), Ed Gaddy (Conservative), and Julian Schreibman (Democratic) — struck a dirty deal and all endorsed the SAME four candidates for four seats on ALL four party lines. Even today it sounds incredible!
Len Bernardo assured his wife’s election as legislator. What benefits Mr. Schreibman was counting on when agreeing to such deal? Now, Julian Schreibman is running for Congress, challenging Congressman Chris Gibson, and the TRUST issue comes into play. How can we trust Schreibman, who made possible a dictatorial-type of deal in our county, hurting candidates and members of all parties, taking away people’s right to choose? How can we trust him when as chairman he caused embarrassment to his own party because of the deal which has serious consequences even today?
Luckily, our choice in the 19th Congressional District is Chris Gibson, a decorated 24-year Army veteran from Columbia County. For those who didn’t read yet about Gibson: he earned a BA from Sienna College, a PhD from Cornell University and was a professor at West Point. He is donating his military pension back to the U.S. Treasury while serving in Congress. Focusing on local issues is exemplified by his fighting for Upstate priorities, including family farms, broadband and Lyme Disease prevention; also, leading the bipartisan storm relief effort to help our communities rebuild and recover. He is protecting Medicare, Social Security and programs for seniors and veterans and supporting legislation to grow the economy, create jobs and balance the budget.
Meeting and talking to Chris Gibson in person at Rochester’s Jennie Bell Pie Festival made me firmly believe he is the right choice for our district. Being in the audience during the debate in Kingston, I witnessed how — despite being continuously attacked — Gibson did not respond in a similar way but, to the contrary, showed how passionate he is about bi-partisanship.
During the same debate, the issue of trust was painfully obvious: How can we trust somebody so obviously partisan in his attacks towards Congressman Gibson to miraculously change and become non-partisan in Washington?!
Judging only by his 24 years of military service, four Bronze Stars and a Purple Heart, I’m convinced that Gibson genuinely desires to serve. I’m happy to give my vote to a true hero, somebody we can trust.