Petrone’s Political Primary Web
By Nicholas Wieland
If only Frank Petrone and Mark Cuthbertson were as creative in solving the challenges of Huntington as they are in manipulating the primary process we’d all be better off. I would have loved to be a fly on the wall to hear the discussions that inspired so many individuals to get involved in Petrone’s tangled web.
I’d have to say, the part that bothers me the most is the arrogance of the paper trail that was left behind.
Here is a little recap of what we have reported so far. Stay with me here, it is quite a tangled web.
Frank Petone who wants to run for re-election in November was given the Democrat line by the Huntington Democratic Committee. The chair of the committee is Mary Collins. Ms. Collins collected signatures for Petrone to secure the line she gave him. She also collected signatures for Harold Acker to be on the Independence line. Who would essentially be running against the candidate she chose.
Gene Cook was given the Republican, Conservative and Independence lines by the Executive committees from those parties.
Cook is also being challenged on the Republican line by Robert Lifson. He is being challenged on the Independence line by Harold Acker. We have already analyzed the connection Petrone has to Lifson’s signatures. You can read about it here.
Acker, as we mentioned in another story, currently works for Supervisor Petrone and has constantly, over the years, donated to Petrone’s campaign. His signatures are also tied to Petrone.
It is not common for individuals to collect signatures for more than one candidate running for the same position, or to collect signatures for one candidate and donate to another. I’m sure if you finely examine petitions you may find a small handful of the aforementioned situation. When you find dozens of individuals involved, most of whom have something to lose financially by a change in administration, it is hard to not consider there is something less than ethical going on.
Ironically, the attorney for the town of Huntington ethics committee is involved, so it seems futile to bring this convoluted issue before that board.
Mark Cuthbertson described these shenanigans as an individual’s first amendment right. I wonder if those soldier’s who have died in the name of service realized that is what they were sacrificing themselves for.
Now it’s time to analyze Acker’s petitions. Of course Harold Acker himself collected petitions for his own candicacy. That is not an issue. However, Acker has contributed to his potential Democrat challenger on numerous occasions totaling $1900. Providing campaign contributions to your potential opponent is certainly not a common practice.
Lynn Bauers works for County Legislator Louis D’Amaro. She collected signatures to get both Frank Petrone and his potential opponent Harold Acker on the ballot.
Stuart Besen is a former Democrat Town Councilman. He collected signatures for Frank Petrone and Harold Acker. He is also a personal friend of Petrone’s.
Richard Casey and Thomas Cavanaugh collected signatures for both Petrone and Acker.
Mary Collins is the Huntington Democratic Chairwoman. She presided over the nomination of Frank Petrone at the Democratic nominating convention. Additionally she collected signatures forPetrone. She also collected signatures for Acker on the Independence line.
Patricia Flynn, a Democratic committee-person collected signatures for Petrone, Acker and Robert Lifson. Flynn works in the Huntington Town Attorney’s office.
Robert Flynn collected signatures for both Petrone and Acker.
Brian Galgano and Deborah Harris both work out of the office of Legislator Steve Stern. They collected signatures for Acker.
Robert Jiminez works for Democrat Councilman Mark Cuthbertson and has donated campaign funds to Frank Petrone. He also collected signatures for Acker.
James Matthews collected signatures for both Petrone and Acker. Matthews also donated campaign funds to Petrone. Matthews currently serves as the attorney to the Huntington Ethics Committee.
Jeffrey Naness collected signatures for Acker and also donated to Frank Petrone’s campaign.
Thelma Neira is a Huntington Town Attorney who collected signatures for Acker. She also contributed to Petrone’s campaign.
Roger Ramme is the Huntington Town Assessor. Mr. Ramme collected signatures for Acker and also donated to the campaign of Frank Petrone.
Jairo Sanin is a Democratic Committee-person who works for the Suffolk County Board of Elections. His wife is the Director of Constituent Affairs for County Executive Bellone. He collected signatures for both Petrone and Acker.
Karen Schackner works out of the office of Lou D’Amaro. She collected signatures for both Acker and Petrone.
Larwence Silverman is a Democratic Committee-person who also collected signatures for both Petrone and Acker.
Richard Thompson collected signatures for Acker and also contributed to the campaign of Frank Petrone.
Jacob Turner who works for the Town of Huntington collected signatures for both Lifson and Acker.
The reason the aforementioned persons were legally able to collect signatures for individuals from different political parties is because they are Notary’s. However the aforementioned information certainly suggests a coordinated effort by the Democratic Party to put forth “spoiler” candidates to affect the outcome of this year’s election process.