NY GOVERNOR CANDIDATES DEBATE; UPSTATE GOP LEADERS CALLING FOR ANOTHER ROUND

By DANIEL SONNINSHINE

On Tuesday evening, October 24, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and his challenger, Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro squared off in a televised debate. While it was the only debate scheduled between the two-term Democrat governor and his Republican challenger, several Republican party leaders are calling for at least one more debate. In particular, GOP leaders from upstate are calling for a debate on issues that are of interest to those voters in areas such as the Finger Lakes region and Ontario County.

Tuesday’s debate featured both candidates on the attack, with many instances of interrupting one another and/or talking over each other. Cuomo’s main tactic seemed to be to tie Molinaro to President Trump, at one point calling him a “Mini-Me of Donald Trump.” Catering to his far-left base, Cuomo remarked, “The extreme conservative wing that Mr. Molinaro and Mr. Trump represent exclude everything. They’re anti-women. They’re anti-LGBTQ,” Another over-the-top statement that Cuomo made, which was clearly designed to appeal to Brooklyn and Manhattan liberals: “This extreme conservative divisive cancer that you have brought to this state with Washington — you put children in cages in Washington and you shackle women to gurneys in New York.”

Molinaro’s strategy was to link Cuomo to corruption, referring to the recent case of Cuomo’s aide, Joseph Percoco, who was convicted of conspiracy and soliciting bribes. He put Cuomo on the spot by saying, “Governor, you have led the most corrupted state government in America. At what point, after eight years of being in office, do you take responsibility?” Molinaro also blamed Cuomo for the current state of New York’s economy, particularly upstate. He noted that the U.S. has “the most competitive economy in the world, and New York State lags behind.”

Following this debate, upstate Republican leaders expressed dissatisfaction, not only with Cuomo’s apparent reluctance to participate in a debate at all (this debate was only recently scheduled), but also with his lack of focus on issues of interest to those outside of cities. Ontario County Republican and Finger Lakes Regional Chairwoman Trisha Turner stated, “We deserve to hear from Cuomo and Molinaro in a meaningful debate about their solutions to solve the many issues facing upstate New Yorkers. Failure to do so sends a loud and clear message to millions of upstate taxpayers that we don’t matter.” And Monroe County Republican and First Vice State Chairman Bill Reilich noted, “Often times it appears Governor Cuomo forgets we exist in upstate New York.”

With just over a week until Election Day, it seems unlikely that another debate will be scheduled and televised. But hopefully one will occur. And like the GOP leaders, let’s hope for a debate that has less time spent on anti-Trump rhetoric and more time on meaningful dialogue and discussion of how the candidates can improve the economy and life in general in the Empire State.

Daniel Sonninshine is an Empire State News staff writer, who is in search of greatness. A 20-something smart fellow, he is now lifting weights in an effort to obtain more power. If that doesn’t work, he will ask to write more editorials for Empire State News and less fact articles.

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100,000 TEXANS CAN’T BE WRONG, RED WAVE RISING

By Rick Manning

More than 100,000 Texans RSVP’d for tickets for the Donald Trump-Ted Cruz rally in Houston, with thousands waiting in line for a day to get inside the venue. While the arena held about 18,000, a similar number tailgated outside, viewing the rally on big screens much like big sporting event viewing parties held outside of stadiums to accommodate fans without tickets.

Senator Cruz’ opponent, Representative Robert O’Rourke, was praying for a typical low mid-term turnout to help him upset conservative icon Cruz.  His hopes rested on the hope that the dual factors of Cruz’ outside the establishment fights on Obamacare and other issues along with the bitter Trump-Cruz presidential primary fight would create enough divisions that GOP turnout would be low, allowing him to sneak into the Senate seat.

The President and Senator Cruz on stage together puts an end to this dream, as it signals the uniting of the limited government Republican Party that Cruz champions and the populist agenda espoused by Trump.

What’s more, for the first time since Ronald Reagan, a GOP President is able to campaign for and help Republican members of Congress in off-year elections.  While George W. Bush and his father were both able to raise significant money behind closed doors for their supporters in Congress, Trump brings a mass appeal unseen since the 80s.

While some might want to dismiss the 100,000 plus in Houston as being a Texas phenomenon, Trump has been playing to sellout crowds across the country in Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Montana, North Dakota, West Virginia, Ohio and Missouri personally creating the groundswell for a Republican wave that may wipe out Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi’s hopes of a Democrat congressional majority.

Off year elections are supposed to be bad-times for the White House incumbent’s political party, but Donald Trump is a rule breaker, and the Senate election map provides Senate Republicans a pathway to potentially reach the 60 Senator filibuster-proof threshold.

While two weeks is a lifetime in election time, the President is proving to be the symbol the silent majority in America needed of standing up for our nation against the mob that seeks to destroy it.  While others have called President Trump a divider, the great irony is that his standing against the violent Antifa-types has unified not only Republicans but many others who were turned off by both the hippie-left and the effete GOP establishment.

100,000 Texans are the beginning of a new, emboldened conservative, populist wave built on basic security and economic issues and a determination to protect the interests of all Americans over the establishment left and the mobs that front for them.

If this Trump wave continues, when historians review the election results in 2018, it is likely that they will be examining how the Democrats turned almost certain victory into a stunning defeat simply by overplaying their hands and highlighting their intolerance toward opposing points of view.  If any major Democrat had vocally opposed the mobs surrounding the Supreme Court confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh, they might have found sympathy, but rather than showing courage against their own base, national Democrats and those running for election in middle America embraced crazy.

In doing so, they nationalized the election for the rest of America and created their own face.  A face of hatred their allies in the media were not smart enough to conceal.  Ultimately, if a red wave occurs, the Democrats will have to come to grips with the fact that when their true face was revealed, America rejected it.

And for Donald Trump, he will have a Congress which credits him with their majority giving him the legislative clout that he has lacked during his first two-years in office.

November 6, 2018 will determine the face of America. And at least 100,000 Texans are standing up and saying yes to Making America Great Again. The question is whether the rest of America will join them?

Correction: 100,000 Texans requested tickets for the event, while about 35,000 attended inside and out. The piece has been modified to reflect the reported attendance.

Rick Manning is the President of Americans for Limited Government.  You can read more of his articles at www.dailytorch.com. 

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WITH DAN PRONTI AS MAYOR, NORTH ARLINGTON HAS THE OPPORTUNITY TO HAVE A TRUE LEADER AND TO PROSPER AGAIN

By CANDY STALLWORTH

Nestled between the Passaic River and the roads that lead to world’s largest metropolis, North Arlington, New Jersey has much more appeal than realized – it may be on its way to a rebirth from the past. NA, as it is known to many in the area, is the southern-most town of one of the country’s wealthiest counties (Bergen), and it’s about 20 minutes from Manhattan, and even closer to the thriving Hoboken and revamped downtown of Jersey City.

Once a cool hangout on its main drag of Ridge Road, the little Jersey town has seen some improvements in recent years. The establishment of a local business association has added a positive bump to the previously failing center of town. Local businesses on that semi-famed Ridge Road had not been thriving over the past decade, but appear to be making a comeback. Queen of Peace, North Arlington’s darling coed Catholic high school, was unfortunately forced into closure, but surprise plans may see a reversal. Residential neighbors are starting to know each other, as they did in the past.

Property taxes in North Arlington, like in most Bergen County towns, are somewhat high, but the town is not yet Ridgewood or Wyckoff. NA has much more potential these days.

And that’s because it has been given a spark.

A spark in leadership.

Rarely can a leader, at the local level, make much of a change in his/her hometown.

But North Arlington, in 2018, has that rare opportunity.

They have it in a current councilman, who is running for mayor.

This little south Bergen town has it in a man named Dan Pronti.

A retired Montclair police sergeant, who grew up in Jersey City, Pronti has the unique combination of commonsense, natural intellect, dedication, motivation, and toughness – with a charismatic and cool demeanor. The guy is likeable.

He is not someone who can get pushed around. He’s nobody’s man, but his own. He’s not a party boss’s sycophant. And he doesn’t have a “political” agenda.

But he does have an agenda.

And that agenda is one to revitalize the economy and standard of living for the residents of the town where he has now lived for numerous years. It’s an agenda to develop, implement – and see to fruition – policies that better the lives of the people in this town. It’s an agenda that he has been carrying out as a town councilman for several years, and which he can fully execute upon being elected as mayor on the first Tuesday next month.

Pronti began his contributions to North Arlington by volunteering to coach, joining local groups and organizing local block parties, in an effort to make the neighborhoods friendlier and safer.  As a councilman, Pronti organized and restarted the North Arlington Business Association.  He initiated many revitalization programs to beautify open spaces, park land and fields.  He also took on the responsibility of starting a program to replant the trees lost during two major hurricanes. Pronti continues to coach NA’s youths and still holds an annual block party.

Ridge Rd is beginning to look alive, with outdoor seating at cafes and restaurants.

Three years ago, Pronti, who is also a licensed Real Estate Agent, noticed an unbalance in the way the local properties were being taxed, between residential and commercial properties.  He set out to fix the problem – and he did.  North Arlington municipal taxes have gone down two years in a row and are projected to be reduced again in 2019.

Pronti has shown, time after time, that he won’t capitulate to disgraced, old time local party bosses. This refreshing quality is what has drawn the electorate to his favor. He has also shown, time after time, that he has innovative, fearless ideas for the economic growth of North Arlington, with real initiatives for property tax reductions. This has further drawn the electorate toward him.

As a former supervising police officer, he understands how to effectively fight crime, and how to oversee a police department, which is part of the mayor’s role in being the head of the executive branch of the local government. Pronti has worked well with North Arlington’s police department, including one of Bergen County’s bright stars in law enforcement, North Arlington Deputy Police Chief Frank Guanci.

As a true leader, Pronti doesn’t understand the word “jealousy”, a word that serves as a political anathema. He is happy for others’ accomplishments and, as that true leader, he looks to work with others in his community – utilizing others’ strengths, along with his own, to succeed in developing North Arlington back into a prospering community.

He sees the wisdom in the words of local stalwarts like Jimmy Bocchino, a town favorite who has dedicated his entire adult life to bettering the lives of people around him. Pronti recognizes the selfless efforts of admirable men like Bocchino, and employs their knowledgeable experiences in formulating policies to better his hometown. He also looks to the younger generations in the community for their input. As that true leader, he makes it a team effort—because he has the confidence of a real man, who isn’t affronted by people with good ideas. Through his gifts of intelligence and commonsense, however, he discerns – and then dismisses – the will of the old guard town Mad Hatter and evil stepmother.

Pronti, in sum, is the strong, smart, and caring type of leader that every town so desperately desires.

North Arlington, on November 6, has the rare chance to elect a true leader. North Arlington, on November 6, has the rare chance to change its course and again become a prosperous town. North Arlington has these rare opportunities through making Dan Pronti its next mayor.

Candy Stallworth, an Empire State News staff writer, whipped her way through a doctoral education at the finest of American higher ed institutions, noting how unoriginal, inept, and annoying many of the schools’ professors were in their robotic attempts to maintain a politically correct narrative. BTW: she hates words like “narrative”, “optics”, and “gaffe.” Other than that, her turn-offs include non-masculine men, women who hate men, men who hate men, phonies, disloyal people, and overflowing garbage cans. She likes New England clam chowder better than Manhattan clam chowder, but prefers Manhattan to New England.

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WHILE KNOW-IT-ALLS LECTURE ON TARIFFS AGAINST CHINA, TRUMP DIALS UP NEW TRADE DEALS WITH UK, EUROPE AND JAPAN

By Robert Romano

While President Donald Trump continues to bring the pressure to China, so far with 10 percent tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods shipped to the U.S., rising to 25 percent in Jan. 2019, which comes atop another 25 percent tariff on $50 billion of goods from China, he is dialing up new trade deals with traditional U.S. allies.

Trade agreements with South Korea, Mexico and Canada are already going to Congress, accounting for a combined $1.4 trillion in trade with the U.S.

And now, Trump has notified Congress of his intent to negotiate deals with the UK, Europe and Japan, with whom the U.S. carried on a combined $1.7 trillion in trade.

These were supposed to be mutually exclusive things, according to all the experts. Trump could either put up more trade barriers or lower them, but he could not do both. Instead, Trump is proving that the U.S. can walk and chew gum at the same time as it pursues the Trump trade agenda.

If nations act fairly and reciprocally with the U.S. to lower trade barriers, they can get a good deal. If not, like China, then they face tariffs.

“Under President Trump’s leadership, we will continue to expand U.S. trade and investment by negotiating trade agreements with Japan, the EU and the United Kingdom,” said U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer in a statement.

“Today’s announcement is an important milestone in that process. We are committed to concluding these negotiations with timely and substantive results for American workers, farmers, ranchers, and businesses,” Lighthizer added.

It’s the ultimate carrot and stick. By acting tough, and levying across the board tariffs, Trump gave the U.S. room to negotiate and incentive for other countries wishing to export to the U.S. to close a deal.

As for China, for now they get to feel the pain. China has retaliated with tariffs on $60 billion of goods including agricultural products soybeans and pork. On currency, China has devalued the yuan almost 10 percent since February.

Trump has warned that if China retaliates, another $267 billion of tariffs could be in the offing.

Speaking on CBS’ 60 Minutes on Oct. 15, Trump said he “might” do more tariffs on China but held out hope they might want to do a deal, too.

“I have a great chemistry also with President Xi of China. I don’t know that that’s necessarily going to continue. I told President Xi we cannot continue to have China take $500 billion a year out of the United States in the form of trade and others things.”

Trump added, “I want them to negotiate a fair deal with us. I want them to open their markets like our– our markets are open.”

As for the prospect of retaliation, Trump dared China to intervene, stating bluntly, “They can retaliate, but they can’t — they don’t have enough ammunition to retaliate. We do $100 billion [in trade] with them. They do $531 billion with us.”

In other words, China could rapidly run out of bullets to fight a trade war with the U.S.

On Oct. 9 the President said, “Now look, China wants to make a deal, and I say they’re not ready yet. I just say they’re not ready yet. And we’ve canceled a couple of meetings because I say they’re not ready to make a deal. We can’t have a one-way street. It’s got to be a two-way street. It’s been a one-way street for 25 years. We gotta make it a two-way street. We’ve got to benefit also.”

So, no deal yet. In the meantime, Congress will have a multitude of trade agreements with South Korea, Mexico, Canada, the UK, Europe and Japan to consider later this year and in 2019 that promise to lower trade barriers for U.S. exporters and get a better deal for American workers.

China will just have sit back and watch. If it wants a good deal, too, then it’s time to talk about currency, intellectual property, dumping and other trade barriers that it has put up. No more free lunches.

Robert Romano is the Vice President of Public Policy at Americans for Limited Government.  You can read more of his articles at www.dailytorch.com. 

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WEAKLING RACIST ANTIFA ZEROS START FIGHT, BUT LOSE TO TOUGHER PROUD BOYS & PROUD BOYS GET ARRESTED – THAT’S NOT JUSTICE

By TEMPLE LI

So the PC police are overtaking the real police in New York City. That’s obvious, given that the NYPD has just arrested and charged a New City man, Geoffrey Young, for his role in a street fight on 82nd Street in Manhattan, last week. The arrest – for riot and attempted assault – was unlawful, pursuant to the following undisputed facts and the law applied to them.

Gavin McInnes, the founder of the Proud Boys, a hip group who are incensed with bigoted treatment and politically correct nonsense, spoke at the Metropolitan Republican Club in Manhattan last Friday evening. ANTIFA members and some other strange persons congregated outside the club, as an effort to antagonize McInnes and Proud Boy members. It should be noted that these far left weirdos’ right to assemble, heckle, yell – and curse – is protected speech under the First Amendment.

That said, a gaggle of about four or five ANTIFA goofballs – donned in black outfits and wearing masks to cover their gutless faces – approached a group of about four or five Proud Boys. The physically weak and sickeningly skinny ANTIFA-zeros yelled nasty things at the Proud Boys. The physically strong and manly-looking Proud Boys yelled nasty things back.

Then, something changed.

Someone took it to the next level.

Someone got violent.

Someone threw a bottle.

No, it was not one of the Proud Boys – the group wrongfully being attacked by the socialist, mainstream, racially-divisive media.

Rather, the one who got violent and hurled a bottle was a scrawny, communist-yearning ANTIFA-zero. The masked assailant, with all the athletic ability of a squirrel, whipped a bottle at the Proud Boys.

In legal self-defense, the Proud Boys responded, not with weapons (like the cowardly ANTIFA-zero), but with fists. Both sides then threw punches and kicks at each other. The fight lasted for less than 90 seconds. The result:

The ANTIFA-zeros got their asses roundly kicked. And they lost their masks, along with whatever manhood they had, in the brawl.

The ANTIFA-zeros lost the fight.

But, inapposite to what the hypocrite mainstream media and ultra-liberal mental midget pundits falsely tell their audiences, being losers in a fight does not make such losers victims. And being winners in a fight does not make the winners guilty of a crime.

Under one of the most basic tenets of criminal law in the United States – the doctrine of self-defense – the Proud Boys are, of course, not guilty of any crime. Conversely, the one weak, coward ANTIFA-zero who threw the bottle is guilty of an assault. The balance of those who engaged in the fight have not committed any criminal offenses. Any lawyer or law enforcement officer who says otherwise is either legally ignorant or is just lying (either for political reasons or politically correct reasons).

When men were men, no one would get arrested. Not even the ANTIFA-zero who threw the bottle (the weapon just hit the pavement). But in the age of the mob, the age of the masked and gutless, the age of the PC-gone-insane, and the age of guilty until proven innocent, the losers of the fight (especially if they are a non-gender group of weakling zeros) become victims. And the winners, even though they didn’t start fight and were assaulted with a weapon, well, many in the media and other far-left circles claim they committed a crime. That’s legal lunacy.

And some in law enforcement who are caving to these crazed PC pressures, well, they are not following the mandates of the law. They are perpetuating an injustice by arresting the Proud Boys. Because the Proud Boys acted lawfully, as they acted in self-defense. No one should be punished – in America – for defending themselves. And no one – in America – should be punished because they won a physical altercation that they did not start (and one where they just used their bodies when their assailants started with a weapon).

Temple Li is the news editor for Empire State News, where she frequently authors her own editorials (just because she feels like it). She graduated at the top of her class at a mediocre college, infuriating her professors with her conservative wit and sultry charm. Empire State News allows Ms. Li to make a living, and to have a platform to tell people what she thinks. What could be better than that?

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PRINCIPAL DUMPED AFTER MAKING STUDENT REMOVE “TRUMP 45” JERSEY AT PATRIOTIC FOOTBALL GAME

By CANDY STALLWORTH

Cheers to Harnett County School District in North Carolina for dumping the bonehead principal that made a student remove his “Trump 45” football jersey at a patriotic high school football game.

Matthew Collins, 18, exercised his First Amendment right to free speech and wore a red, white, and blue jersey to his high school football game on October 5. Students had been told to dress patriotically for the game. Collins’s jersey featured stars and stripes on the front, along with the letters “USA” and an image of the Statute of Liberty’s torch. The back of the jersey featured the name “Trump” and the number “45.”

Close to halftime, Cindy Gordon, then-principal at the high school, singled Collins out of the crowd and asked him to remove the jersey. She stated that the shirt was “too political” and that some parents complained about it. Collins complied with her request, although Collins’s father later reported that his son felt “humiliated” and “embarrassed” by the principal’s actions.

“There is nothing political about this shirt,” Mike Collins, Matthew’s father, noted. He also pointed out that he himself is a registered Democrat. The jersey was a show of respect for the sitting president, not an attempt to make a political statement.

Naturally, this incident received plenty of media attention and criticism. The school district, likely embarrassed by Principal Gordon’s lame attempt to appease some complaining liberals (or perhaps she was personally offended by this visual reminder to her that Donald Trump is the President of the United States), released this statement: “…we want to emphasize that Harnett County Schools supports and affirms students’ rights to express themselves — including wearing clothing expressing political messages or supporting political candidates or officeholders — in ways that are not expected to disrupt school or school events.”

A week later, the Harnett County School District reported that Cindy Gordon had been replaced. It is unclear whether Cindy Gordon is totally out of a job, or has just been relocated to another position in the district. In any case, thank goodness she is not serving as the leader of the high school. Anyone who squashes a student’s right to free speech should not be acting in a leadership role. Whether she was caving in to offended liberal parents at the football game, or she asked Collins to remove his Trump jersey because she just did not want to see this display of support for the president, she is not deserving of the respect of those in her school community.

It’s scary to think how often students in schools, who wish to express conservative viewpoints, face unfair repercussions. ESN has reported on several recent cases, where students’ freedom of speech was shut down because it was pro-Trump and/or conservative. In such cases, liberals get offended, melt down, and take unnecessary and unjust actions against young people simply because they are exercising free speech that does not fit into their anti-Trump, anti-Christian, anti-patriotic ideology. While it’s not likely that liberals will end their whiny, nonsensical antics anytime soon, let’s hope that those power-abusing libs in charge, like Cindy Gordon, find themselves out of power when they attempt to trample on young people’s free speech.

Candy Stallworth, an Empire State News staff writer, whipped her way through a doctoral education at the finest of American higher ed institutions, noting how unoriginal, inept, and annoying many of the schools’ professors were in their robotic attempts to maintain a politically correct narrative. BTW: she hates words like “narrative”, “optics”, and “gaffe.” Other than that, her turn-offs include non-masculine men, women who hate men, men who hate men, phonies, disloyal people, and overflowing garbage cans. She likes New England clam chowder better than Manhattan clam chowder, but prefers Manhattan to New England.

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WITH NO CORROBORATION IN KAVANAUGH CASE, JUSTICE WARRANTS END OF CRAZE & HE-SAID, SHE-SAID CASES

By KENNETH DEL VECCHIO

This is a frightening time; a time of a true craze. It’s a time when the bedrocks of American justice – “innocent until proven guilty” and “proof beyond a reasonable doubt” – are in jeopardy. It’s a time when America could devolve into becoming a nation with a criminal justice system equivalent to those of dictatorial, fascist governments. It’s a time when people are calling for others’ heads based solely upon the accusations of one person, with no evidence corroborating the claims. And that’s awful frightening.

Think about your son, daughter, husband, mother, father (whoever it is that you love the most). If that person suddenly got arrested (or even had his/her career ruined) because another person claimed he/she pointed a gun in his face – should your loved one’s life be destroyed? In a case where there is absolutely no corroborating evidence? Just because one person claimed that your loved one pointed a gun in his face? If your answer is yes, that is indeed quite scary…

And if your answer is “yes”, at this moment, it likely fruits from the brewing craze that has boiled over into the Kavanaugh/Ford case. You might, however, want to revisit the adage “be careful what you wish for” – on two bases: (1) it’s doubtful that you actually are that evil where you would really think your loved one should be prosecuted for a crime based solely upon one person’s word; and (2) Christine Blasey Ford could be first-in-line to be prosecuted based upon the accusation of a singular individual. Just one example of many contradictions in her sworn testimony:

Ford’s ex-boyfriend, at the risk of being charged with perjury, stated that she lied under oath when she testified in front of the U.S. Senate. Specifically, he said that she had previously prepped a friend for a lie detector test. Ford told the senate, very particularly, that she never prepped anyone for a polygraph test. Ford should not be charged with a crime under this circumstance, however, because this is just another he-said, she-said case.

Certain politicians and pundits are arguing that Kavanaugh misrepresented himself regarding his drinking habits in high school/college. Although he specifically testified under oath that, at times, he drank “excessively” and vomited from drinking via a weak stomach, some claim that his testimony is disputed by a few college classmates. On CNN earlier this week, Jeffrey Toobin refuted the strength of such arguments, as these adverse classmates have merely used different words (i.e. synonyms) to describe Kavanaugh’s then-drinking. When Toobin, a notoriously heavy-handed liberal legal analyst, shoots down a far left law-related claim, it speaks volumes. In other words, the alleged contradictions in Kavanaugh’s testimony about his early-days’ alcohol consumption do not exist; semantics exist. Here, it’s not even a he-said, she-said case. It’s an embarrassing act of desperation to ruin this man, so a partisan group can prevent Kavanaugh from reaching the Supreme Court. 

Bret Kavanaugh will not be turned away by the U.S. Senate because his descriptive words of his drinking habits are not the identical words chosen by every, single person who has spoken up about his liquor intake; most people from his past have used Kavanaugh’s exact choice of vocabulary, a handful have elected to use synonymous verbiage.

Kavanaugh will not be denied the seat because he came across indignant, upset, and angry at the hearings; most consider this a normal reaction to being falsely accused of a serious crime and would think it strange if he were cold and unemotional. 

Kavanaugh will not be barred from the Supreme Court because a nut case said that he spiked punch with qualudes at a string of “gang rape” parties. Aside from the fact that the woman reversed her sworn statement in an NBC interview and provided “witnesses” who were either dead or denied her claims, the story is a fantastic, unbelievable mess. 

Kavanaugh will not be blocked from ascending to the highest court of the land because of the Ramirez dropped-pants account. The supposed victim called a cache of Yale classmates, asking if they recalled the incident – because she could not remember if Kavanaugh was the perpetrator. Enough said for this yet-another completely uncorroborated accusation. 

And Kavanaugh will not be sent packing by the U.S. Senate because he may have thrown an ice cube at someone in bar. In layman’s speak, that’s pretty funny – and who cares. 

That leaves the Ford story. 

The judge will remain a judge in face of it. And he will, almost definitely, become an even higher-level judge in face of it. And that’s because the Ford story appears to be just that—a story. The woman cannot remember key details of where it happened and when it happened. She suffers from having a “retrieved” memory, which is inherently unreliable. And all four of the people who were supposedly at the party have either responded with a denial of the event or that they do not remember it occurring. Again, this is semantics as there is one common denominator among them: they do not corroborate Ford’s story. 

The phrase “almost definitely” was utilized in the first sentence of the above paragraph. And that’s because although the FBI report has been submitted, the senate has not yet voted. IF…IF…IF the FBI had reported actual, credible corroboration for Ford’s story, then members of the U.S. Senate would have a basis to vote “no” on confirmation of Kavanaugh’s appointment. “Corroboration” means what all normal, rational, justice-seeking persons think it means: eye witness testimony, video, audio, forensic evidence, and confessions. IF…IF…IF the FBI report, a report from law enforcement in the jurisdiction where the alleged offense occurred, and/or a report from the U.S. Senate investigators provided for actual corroborating, credible evidence, then Ford’s story may not be just a story. Then, it may be true. However, the IF has not occurred. 

Quite to the contrary, it appears that not only is there no credible corroborating evidence, but there is no credible evidence, at all, to support a claim of sexual assault carried out by Brett Kavanaugh. The official U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee response to the FBI report is that there is not even a hint of corroborating evidence to support a claim of sexual assault. 

IF…IF…IF there is credible, corroborating evidence that Ford lied under oath – to support her ex-boyfriend’s assertion that she prepped a friend for a lie detector test – then Ford should be charged with a crime. At this point, it appears that no such credible, corroborating evidence exists. 

No one should be charged with a crime based upon a he-said, she-said case – a case where it is simply one person’s word versus another’s, with no corroborating evidence. 

No one should be dragged through harrowing, public hearings and/or lose a job and/or be denied a promotion based upon a he-said, she-said case – a case where it is simply one person’s word versus another’s, with no corroborating evidence.

It is justified and warranted for a non-public investigation of an unsupported allegation of a crime to occur – to determine if there is any corroborating evidence. Unfortunately, in the Kavanaugh case, politicians and media personnel obliterated the justice of such a normal legal endeavor. Now, the world knows, all too well, of a bunch of he-said, she-said accusations – and that Kavanaugh threw ice in college. Given that the FBI report has been delivered – with its non-corroborating results – Kavanaugh should immediately be confirmed by the senate, and Ford should go home. But if any credible, corroborating evidence is accrued, then those that may have committed crimes, including false accusers, should be charge accordingly (so long as a prosecutor believes he/she can prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt).

The ultimate takeaway from the Kavanaugh-Ford hearing debacle: a law should be enacted, both at the state and federal levels, making it illegal to ever prosecute a person based solely upon the testimony of one person. Without corroborating evidence to buttress the singular claim issued in a he-said, she-said case, the government should be prohibited from prosecuting these “one person’s word versus another’s” cases. Then, and only then, shall “innocent until proven guilty” and “proof beyond a reasonable doubt” obtain their true constitutional meanings. And then, and only then, can America be freed from this frightening craze. 

TRUMP’S “NICKEL PLAN” TO CUT SPENDING LAUDED BY FISCAL CONSERVATIVES

By DANIEL SONNINSHINE

President Trump is continuing to make good on his campaign promises. He has vowed to cut spending, and his “nickel plan” is a viable initiative to do just that.

The “nickel plan” is a proposed initiative that will require each Cabinet department to cut 5% from their budget by fiscal year 2020. This will force the departments to eliminate at least some fat and wasteful spending, which exists throughout government. Currently, the budget deficit is over $800 million. In the past, the “penny plan” (where Cabinet departments cut 1% from their budget) has been proposed, but the nickel plan calls for greater cuts and thus will be even more effective.

The military will not be affected by these cuts, as funding for defense was approved by Congress in September.

Trump points out that this is an easy and practical solution that will make a positive impact on the economy. “We’re going to cut spending, absolutely. It’s not as tough as you think. And frankly there’s a lot of fat in there,” he stated in a recent interview on FOXBusiness. He also suggested that perhaps he would ask for another nickel plan next year.

Economists are looking optimistically at the impact these spending cuts would make. Moody’s Managing Director John Lonski proclaimed, “The markets would love this, my goodness. Treasury bond yields would drop. Equity prices would soar if we had these type of spending cuts.”

And this is one of the many reasons why it was the right decision to elect an astute, succesful businessman, not a career politician, for president. With solutions such as this one, and refusal to accept anything less from the bureaucrats around him, President Trump continues to #MakeAmericaGreatAgain.

Daniel Sonninshine is an Empire State News staff writer, who is in search of greatness. A 20-something smart fellow, he is now lifting weights in an effort to obtain more power. If that doesn’t work, he will ask to write more editorials for Empire State News and less fact articles.

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BERGEN COUNTY REPUBLICAN ORGANIZATION NEW CHAIRMAN JACK ZISA HEADING GOP INTO NEW ERA, WITH IMPRESSIVE YOUNG REPUBLICANS MATTHEW GILSON, GIANCARLO GHIONE & JOHN CROSS AND STALWART LEADER GERALD CARDINALE

By DANIEL SONNINSHINE

The Bergen County Republican Organization (“BCRO”) has struggled in recent times to regain seats at the county level. Although it has had respected leaders in Paul DiGaetano and Robert Yudin over the last several years, in-fighting among Bergen County GOP leadership, coupled with substantial fundraising difficulties, have hampered progress. It has been quite some time since Bergen County has seen a Republican elected as county executive, sheriff, or county freeholder. With the election of Jack Zisa as the new BCRO chairman, many are now hopeful.

Zisa, a long time player in Bergen County politics, including formerly serving as the mayor of Hackensack – the county’s largest city which is normally a Democrat stronghold – took the reins of the BCRO in June. Already, excitement is beginning to grow throughout the county. Many Republicans who are members of local GOP clubs, as well as those who serve on the county committees for their respective towns, have become motivated by Zisa’s rise to the county chairmanship post. Some outwardly optimistic, others cautiously optimistic, look to him for unification within the party – and it seems that such may be occurring.

The turnout of county committee members to vote for the GOP candidate for the county sheriff special election was promising. A more-than-usual amount of the county committee electorate attended the Hasbrouck Heights gathering, which resulted in well-liked Hasbrouck Heights Mayor John “Jack” DeLorenzo winning the nomination over a few other candidates, including popular Midland Park Mayor Harry Shortway. The turnout – and enthusiasm – is notable, given that this election is a very likely a loss for the GOP. Although former sheriff Michael Saudino, a Republican-turned-Democrat, abruptly left the post amid purported race-related comments, the Democrat candidate is still heavily favored to win in November.

Likewise, the Republican candidates for county executive and the freeholder board – Norman Schmelz, Hector Olmo, and Eric Kulmala – have a significant uphill battle in this year’s election. Simply, the Democrats have substantially greater name recognition and, more so, a much bigger bank of money. The latter issue, funding, however, has, for the first time in recent years, been promising since Zisa took over the chairmanship role. Apparently, the BCRO is raising some money. And while this year’s candidates may suffer at the hands of the Bergen County Democratic regime’s war chest, next year the field of money may get closer to evening out. And if Zisa is able to wrangle candidates who provide excitement for the electorate, the combination could result in a win.

The Bergen Young Republicans have been a glowing light in a dim overall array of GOP players. Matthew Gilson, a 27-year-old lawyer who serves as the chairman of the Bergen County Young Republicans, has recently won a few impressive court battles on behalf of GOP candidates. Giancarlo Ghione, New Jersey’s statewide Young Republican Chairman, has been an important force in GOP growth in his home Bergen County. And new BCRO treasurer John Cross, a charismatic personality, has emerged as an integral leader for the younger Republicans.

The Bergen County GOP party also has a few veteran elected officials who provide guidance, clarity, and strength on the top-end of the state political spectrum. A powerful mainstay in Republican politics who is respected by elected officials across the board, State Senator Gerald Cardinale is the go-to official for wise leadership advice. The patriarch of the county for GOP voters, Cardinale is a proud conservative who has led by example and policy; according to most political observers, he is unbeatable because of his popularity within the Republican base. Joining Cardinale as admired Bergen-elected officials in state offices are Kevin Rooney (state assembly), Holly Schepisi (state assembly), Kristin Corrado (state senate), Christopher DePhillips (state assembly), and Robert Auth (state assembly). This cache of leaders, collectively and individually, have encouraged voters with not only their wins but their accomplishments in the state legislature.

The combination of the new BCRO leadership, young Republican burst, and experienced guidance may lead Bergen County Republicans into a new, overall positive era. So long as the party doesn’t revert to its fractured status.

Daniel Sonninshine is an Empire State News staff writer, who is in search of greatness. A 20-something smart fellow, he is now lifting weights in an effort to obtain more power. If that doesn’t work, he will ask to write more editorials for Empire State News and less fact articles.

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AMERICA’S MOST FAMOUS PROSECUTOR, HERBERT STERN, AUTHORS PROLIFIC BOOK ‘DIARY OF A DA’

A BOOK REVIEW BY KENNETH DEL VECCHIO

Diary of a DA: The True Story of the Prosecutor Who Took On the Mob, Fought Corruption and Won, scribed in the first person, follows the storied prosecutorial career of Herbert Stern. The memoir travels from the inception of his barrister duties at the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office in 1962 through his tenure as the U.S. Attorney for the State of New Jersey, which ended in 1974 when he was appointed to the federal bench. An easy to read personal tome, the book functions perfectly in equal parts of criminal suspense, courtroom drama, and a guide to understanding the trial work components of the criminal justice system.

Stern educates his readers about the lowest level duties of an assistant district attorney, such as trying minor cases while being part of the “Complaint Bureau” and the “Criminal Court Bureau”, and compiling indictments in front of grand juries. The author, in recounting his own tales in these units, doesn’t glamorize the seemingly smallish work of a youthful prosecutor. Instead, he paints the realistic picture of the monotony related to the court hearings associated with these bureaus. Stern unabashedly explains the bumps and bruises he took in learning his craft in these courts. He expresses that while law school only taught him legal theory, his first assignments with the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office taught him the practical side of law (i.e. – how to object, introduce evidence, direct- and cross-examine witnesses, deliver summations, and negotiate plea bargains). Refreshingly, he admits to making mistakes in his on-the-job training.

Although the young prosecutor fought with tenacity in his first endeavors, Stern often recognizes the de minimis nature of many of the offenses that he was prosecuting. He internally questions the necessity – and sometimes even morality – of forwarding certain gambling and so-called obscenity cases. He laments that “All in all, it is a shoddy business, and I would feel better if I refused to be part of the moral police.” However, Stern is ambitious and realizes that this is just part of the job. What he doesn’t realize, in these earliest stages of his vocation, is just how quickly the job will change, and the heights of success that he will accrue. For, in just a little over two years in the business, Stern will be leading the charge in the investigation of the murder of one of America’s most well-known and controversial men: Malcolm X.

Diary of a DA progresses to chronicle, in a strict timeline fashion, the travails of Stern’s rapid movement through the prosecutor ranks. As the import of the cases grows, so does Stern’s agency resume. While still in his 20s, he moves to the Department of Justice. In 1969, at only 32-years old, Stern lands the second-in-command position at the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New Jersey, although he was not barred in the state. And just two years later, he is appointed the U.S. Attorney of New Jersey. In this federal post, Stern serves as the state’s most powerful law enforcement official. The gravity of the cases he prosecutes in these varied roles – coupled with the detailed and colorfully descriptive layman’s prose that Stern employs to communicate the normally complex material – is what makes this book a fast read that is nearly impossible to put down.

Stern spearheaded the successful prosecutions of the real-life mafiosos who inspired the HBO hit series, The Sopranos. He brought down guys with names like Sam “The Plumber” DeCavalcante and Anthony “Tony Boy” Boiardo, whose father, Richie “The Boot” Boiardo, maintained an incinerator at his Livingston, NJ property so he could effectively dispose of mob-hit bodies. He also oversaw the prosecutions of mafia made men Anthony “Little Pussy” Russo and Angelo “Gyp” DeCarlo, the latter of which was Frank Sinatra’s cousin.

On the government front, Stern shredded the most notorious of corrupted political machines. Not only did he ensure the convictions of the law-breaking mayors of Newark, Atlantic City, and Jersey City, but he broke the backs of their seemingly impenetrable behind-the-scenes bosses. Longtime Hudson County chieftain John V. Kenny was considered the most powerful – and most corrupt – political boss in New Jersey. His group heisted 10% of all monies paid for public contracts in Hudson County and extorted 3% of the salaries of municipal employees throughout the county. Stern ended their abusive operations.

Stern’s book has the intimate feel of a diary, but is written much more in novel form. It is replete with little – and large – gems of honesty and reality in the hopefully hallowed halls of justice.

In describing a New York City criminal court judge, former NYC Mayor Vincent Impellittmeri, in a 1963 diary entry, Stern relays, “…I do note that while he treats private counsel with great consideration, he is very tough on legal aid lawyers and their defendants.” In the same chapter, Stern delivers one of the most poignant and candid admissions of a prosecutor: that he mistakenly prosecuted a man who he thought might not be guilty. This was a haunting, transformative event for Stern as a 26-year-old lawyer.

Here he tells the story not of a major mob boss or top corrupted politico, but a no-name, represented by a legal aid attorney, who allegedly hit a person and stole five dollars. After the arresting police officer told Stern that he believed the complainant was lying and that the defendant was innocent, Stern interviewed the complainant and found that there were multiple holes in his account. Believing that it was his duty to put the complainant on the witness stand and let the court make the call, Stern initiated the trial.

As the purported theft/assault victim testified, Stern repeatedly attempted to bring out all the problems with the complainant’s version of the incident. This is something that the defense attorney would usually do and Judge Impellitteri (the jurist who wasn’t too favorable to legal aid-represented defendants), kept telling Stern, “Do not impeach your own witness.” The judge’s admonition was strange, if not improper, in that his role is supposed to be that of an impartial party – and not one who should be meddling in how the prosecutor is handling his own witness. Stern dismissed Impellitteri’s interference, thinking that this judge understood what he was trying to do, namely bring out the reasonable doubt in the case which would result in an acquittal. Stern was incorrect.

As part of a three-judge panel, Impellitteri convicted the man and sentenced him to the most harsh penalty the court could impose for the offenses: two one year prison terms, to run consecutively. Stern was shocked at the result, and in face of potentially being held in contempt of court, he yelled to the judge, “How could you do that?”

But  Impellitteri didn’t hold the young lawyer in contempt. Instead, the judge emotionlessly said to him, “Mr. Stern, if you did not want us to convict him, why did you prosecute him?”

Understanding this as the most valuable lesson he had learned to date – and it becoming a cornerstone in his personal canons of justice that he carried with him throughout his legendary prosecutorial career – Stern, wrote:

“I did not think my job was to judge credibility. I believed it was for the court to decide who was telling the truth and my function was just to present testimony…But standing before that cold man I see I am wrong, and I will remain wrong as long as people like him sit in judgment. I have learned that the prosecutor must do more than determine if a judge or a jury could legally convict. In that moment I see that the prosecutor must do more than advocate reasonable positions. The power of his office is too vast to permit him to shift responsibility from himself to any tribunal for the outcome of what he alone has the authority to initiate.”

A 537-page book, Diary of a DA constitutes an autobiography of just a 12-year portion of Stern’s career, to wit his term as a prosecutor. At just 37, he was appointed his federal judgeship, which resulted in even more notoriety for the ever-motivated legal stalwart. Presiding over the only case ever tried in an American court in the then-American occupied sector of West Berlin, Germany, Stern gained international acclaim through this 1986 trial and a book he authored about it, Judgment in Berlin. This first writing effort netted Stern a movie deal, as the book was adapted into a screenplay and produced into a feature film of the same title. Academy Award winner Martin Sheen played Stern in the movie, and Academy Award winner Sean Penn co-starred in the flick. Upon retiring from the bench at 50 (an age at which most lawyers do not even first-become federal judges), Stern launched one of New Jersey’s most fabled and respected criminal defense practices. The man required personally seeing justice prevail in all roles of the criminal law system, a quality of his that is easily understood within the confines of his memoir as a prosecutor. Although Stern makes it clear that as a U.S. attorney and assistant district attorney he carried out his duties with the greatest of passion, precision, and success, he is equally mindful, throughout the book, of his goal to see justice sought (and to do that, one must be mindful of the law and the rights on the other side).

Diary of a DA, by Herbert Stern, is a thought-provoking, educational, highly interesting and entertaining literary work. It belongs on the must-read list for anyone who enjoys crime genre books, and for anyone who simply likes a good, inspirational story.

Kenneth Del Vecchio, ESN publisher and editor-in-chief, is the author of some of the nation’s best-selling legal books, including a series of criminal codebooks published by Pearson Education/Prentice Hall and Thomson Reuters-ALM/New Jersey & New York Law Journal Books. He is a former judge, a former prosecutor and a practicing criminal/entertainment attorney for 24 years, wherein he has tried over 400 cases.  Mr. Del Vecchio is also an acclaimed filmmaker who has written, produced and directed over 30 movies that star several Academy Award and Emmy winners and nominees. His films are distributed through industry leaders such as Sony Pictures, NBCUniversal, Cinedigm, and E-1 Entertainment. He has starred in numerous movies, as well. A best-selling political thriller novelist, he penned his first published novel at only 24-years-old. Additionally, Mr. Del Vecchio is the founder and chairman of Hoboken International Film Festival, called by FOX, Time Warner, and other major media “One of the 10 Biggest Film Festivals in the World.”  A regular legal and political  analyst on the major news networks, Mr. Del Vecchio formerly served as the publisher and editorial page editor for a New Jersey daily newspaper. 

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