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Vote for Cornell

We will leave it to our readers to hazard a guess as to who Andy and myself are voting for in this election. Needless to say, we have known to hold some paradoxical views, being quoted approvingly in The Cornell Review while also making fun of Ann Coulter '84.

That said, there probably are some Cornellians you should consider voting for today...

On the Presidential ballot, way down on the bottom, you will find the Green Party candidates of Cynthia Mckinney and Rosa Clemente. McKinney was a former Frank H.T. Rhodes Class of '56 University Professor at Cornell. And Clemente earned her MPS at Cornell in 2002. Her Wikipedia article lists her as a community organizer and Hip-Hop activist, so it looks like Barack has another community organizer to keep him company on the ballot this year.

A cursory search didn't indicate any major party Cornellian candidates for U.S. Senate (nor are they any current sitting Senators from Cornell), but if I missed any candidates, please do let me know.

In the House of Representatives is where things get interesting. Cornell currently has four alums serving as current Congressman -- Ron Andrews JD '82 (D, NJ-1), Bob Filner '63 (D, CA-51), Mark Kirk '81 (R, IL-10), and Gabriell Giffords MRP '96 (D, AZ-8). So roughly 1 percent of all U.S. Congressman are Cornellians, which isn't too shabby. But as our Achilles heal, we've never had a President or Governor of New York State.

Giffords, Andrews, and Filner appear all to be sitting in relatively safe seats this year, although Filner does appear to have a reputation for being a little bit "pushy". Giffords was thought to have a competitive race against the current President of the Arizona Senate, but the latest polls out put her at a comfortable lead.

That leaves Kirk, who made the unfortunate slight of saying, "If we see Obama there's a shoot-on-sight order." over the summer. Needless to say, the race has gotten competitive for this Republican in a state that is looking to usher in its first U.S. President since the days of Grant and Lincoln, and his competitor Dan Seals has made the race competitive this year, thanks, of course, to a general anti-Republican sentiment sweeping the nation this election season.

Now, there may be more, but the only other Congressional candidate I could find with Cornellian roots is Chris Myers MPA '96 who is running as a Republican against incumbent Democrat John Adler in New Jersey's third congressional district. I would categorize it as a lean Dem. (And coincidentally, Adler is a Harvard alum.)

Update: Reader CE writes in with more races that we failed to note the first time around. In the race for the Governorship of Vermont, Democrat Gaye Symington MBA '83, is facing an uphill battle again incumbent Jim Douglas to the right and 'Independent Progressive' (where else but in Vermont?) Anthony Pollina to the left. While Symington is a long shot, we would be amiss not to point out that Cornellian Philipi Hoff JD '51 was governor of Vermont in the 60s, and curiously, attended Williams before heading to graduate school at Cornell, just like Symington.

And there's apparently another congressional race that we missed which has a good chance of ushering in a Cornellian to the U.S. House of Representatives. Kurt Schrader '73 has the Democratic endorsement for the 5th Congressional district in Oregon. At this point, he looks like the favorite, with Pollster giving him a 20 point spread. Oregon likes it Democrats, apparently.

So maybe Cornell will only have three still have four representatives in Congress come January, even if Kirk loses, Schrader will help to balance things up for the Carnelian and White.

Matthew Nagowski | Posted on November 04, 2008 (#)

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