The announcement on January 12 that Senate Senator Suzi Oppenheimer will not be running for a 15th term set off a chain reaction of speculation.
The announcement on January 12 that Senate Senator Suzi Oppenheimer will not be running for a 15th term set off a chain reaction of speculation.Who’s going to run for State Senator in the 37th District, which includes Rye, on the Conservative, Democratic, and Republican lines this November?
Certainly, the Republican candidate in the last election will give it another try. “Yes, I have not made a formal announcement,” says Bob Cohen, “ but I’m definitely running for the State Senate.”
Cohen lost narrowly – by 700 votes – to Oppenheimer in a fierce campaign in 2010. With control of the New York State Senate up for grabs in the Oppenheimer/Cohen race, hundreds of thousands of dollars, much from outside the District, was spent on advertising – some of it quite ugly.
Why would Cohen, a small businessman from Scarsdale, want to go such an ordeal again? “I believe people want real citizen legislators who will change the status quo. Last year’s close election was evidence of the desire for real change in Albany,” said Cohen in a recent interview.
What changes? “Of course, the first issue is taxes. But, beneath the tax issue is the cost of mandates from Albany which add more and more burdens on municipalities, school districts, and the County,” Cohen argues. He believes passing the tax cap was easy, but reducing mandates that affect pensions, health care, and so on is the really hard part.
“Career politicians, who move from elected position to elected position, will not fight the special interests in order make the hard decisions,” states Cohen. “Rather, they just push things off – like pension reform – from one year to the next. We’re backing ourselves into a major crisis across the state.”
If it seems early for Bob Cohen to be jumping into the race, it’s already begun. After the interview, who by the way is no relation to the R.A. Cohen property owner in Rye, this reporter went home for dinner and relax — only to hear a “Robocall” attacking Cohen’s probable Democratic opponent. On your mark, set . . .