Far left triumphant in New York primary
The socialist insurgency against establishment Democrats in New York emerged triumphant as no fewer than six far-left candidates defeated establishment Democrats in races for the state Senate.
Years of anger at a group of Democratic state senators who had collaborated with Republicans boiled over on Thursday, as primary voters ousted nearly all of them in favor of challengers who had called them traitors and sham progressives.
The losses were not only a resounding upset for the members of the Independent Democratic Conference, who outspent their challengers several times over, but also a sign that the progressive fervor sweeping national politics had hobbled New York's once-mighty Democratic machine, at least on a local level.
The most high-profile casualty was Senator Jeffrey D. Klein of the Bronx, the former head of the I.D.C. In that role, he was for years one of Albany's most powerful players, sharing leadership of the chamber with his counterparts in the Republican conference and participating in the state's secretive budget negotiations.
But on Thursday, he was defeated by Alessandra Biaggi, a lawyer and former aide to Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, after a campaign in which Ms. Biaggi cornered Mr. Klein into spending more than $2 million, an astonishing sum for a state legislative race. (Cynthia Nixon, in her unsuccessful bid against Mr. Cuomo, spent less.)
Two things: First, the victories of socialists rid the Democrats of the last vestige of bipartisanship in the state Senate. This will make Albany an even more unruly place than it already is. Secondly, and most important, the march of socialism in the Democratic Party appears to be unstoppable and will make 2020 an Armageddon of sorts between right and left.
Which vision will the 50% of eligible voters who bother to go to the polls choose? The party of free stuff? Or the party of personal responsibility and the protection of liberty?
No matter who wins, the individual in the Oval Office will have to govern pretty much by decree, given the rancor between the two parties. That race will start soon after the 2018 midterms are over with perhaps an emboldened and empowered far left who will almost certainly try to nominate the most radical presidential candidate in U.S. political history.
The rest of the New York primaries were no surprise. Governor Andrew Cuomo crushed actress and activist Cynthia Nixon to win the Democratic primary for governor. But Nixon accomplished something that no Republican has been able to do: end Cuomo's dreams of the presidency. Her criticisms damaged Cuomo severely, and several corruption scandals in Albany tarnished his clean image.
Cuomo will also never be forgiven for making the idiotic statement that "America was never that great." Even Democrats will be able to run against that statement in the presidential primaries.