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Tale of two rallies

Town of Hempstead supervisor Kate Murray kicked off her re-election campaign heading into the holiday weekend. Murray is widely seen as an obstacle to the Lighthouse Project, which would -- among other development moves -- renovate the aging Nassau Coliseum.

While these local kick-off rallies are rarely exciting, this one had a little, ah, we'll call it "energy," according to reports (emphasis mine):

[State GOP head Joseph] Mondello was heckled by a few New York Islander fans among the crowd of about 50, who believe Murray is holding up the Lighthouse project that would renovate Nassau Coliseum.

Outside Levittown Veterans Memorial Park, Mondello said Murray was "absolutely pro-growth, but wants people not to be hurt."

>>Eden Laikin, in Newsday

That's one impression. Here's another:

Behavior today clearly suggests that [Murray] is vulnerable, especially if only 60 people in a town of over 750,000 could bring themselves to show their support publicly.

Joe Conte, a fan and voter from Franklin Square, showed up carrying a sign that said "Build our Future,"  When challenging Murray to comment on the Lighthouse, other Murray supporters either tried to cover his sign or, in one instance, tried to start a physical altercation.

>>Nick Giglia, contributing at IslandersIndependent

Chris Botta also had a run-down of things. His impression of Mondello's response to Lighthouse queries: "It all sounds a little sad."

[Update: I missed this before, but 7th Woman was there with recorder and camera and has the most thorough report of the kick-off that I've seen.]

The Summer of Tavares: There will be fun.

Addendum: Now, "Why query Murray at her re-election kick-off?" one might ask. "Why not let her have her day?" Well, concerned citizens and constituents -- Nick is certainly one -- have had trouble getting beyond form-letter responses from the Town on the issue. And of course, Murray -- an elected representative, mind you -- has famously saw fit to miss meeting after meeting relating to the issue. You might say this is one meeting where Murray's constituents knew she would show up.

One philosophy of government by elected representatives recognizes that, no matter where you fall on a particular issue, you should engage in dialog with constituents: Disagree with them, fine -- but explain yourself and hear your constituents out. Another philosophy involves stalling, avoidance, and resting on the existing power of party politics rather than explicitly stating your position, and reasons.

I know which philosophy I'm partial to. But I'm not a politician.