November 20, 2007

A bright spot in the Town Justice race

As I conclude reporting on November's election, I'd like to bring attention to something in the Town Justice race that I think demonstrates the importance of competitive elections.

It seems safe to say that before this year, Town Justice Chris Clauson was not a fan of Drug Court, and Dryden Republicans had highlighted their opposition to the Court in 2005 in both the District Attorney's race and the County Legislature races.

This year was different, and I think credit goes both to the Republicans - my understanding is that new Chair Jim Crawford and Dryden Village Trustee Randy Sterling had a lot to do with that side of the conversation - and to the Democrats, Jason Leifer especially, for pressing it as an issue in a competitive race.

I never thought I'd hear Clauson saying things like:

"Personally I wish [drug court] wasn't voluntary. I wish that the state would make it mandatory sentencing," Clauson said "It doesn't work as much as I want it to work because it's voluntary."

I worry about the value of election-year conversions, but I hope that this one will stick. Given support for that position from both sides of the aisle, I have real hopes.

Posted by simon at November 20, 2007 6:54 AM in
Note on photos