Tons of trashed politicians looking for re-use in Buffalo and WNY

Last week, Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown announced that Buffalo set a new monthly record in March for recycling more than 1,000 tons of material.  Now, Buffalo looks to take recycling to the next level: recycling “previously used” politicians.

Former  State Senator Antoine Thompson is rumored (so says WGRZ) to be considering a return to the political ring by trying to win a state Senate seat again, this time in the new 63rd district.  Problem is, he might face current State Senator Tim Kennedy in the primary.  Who will voters leave out on the curb?

How could Thompson beat out the popular Kennedy in a September primary?  Well, apathy would have a lot to do with it, in that low turnout could help out in Thompson’s favor.  However, low turnout didn’t help him in 2010:

“A lot of people in Buffalo never believed I could lose, so a lot of people just didn’t get out and vote, and that’s unfortunate.” 

Thompson, who got clotheslined by Republican challenger Mark Grisanti in 2010 in the 60th District (an overwhelmingly Democratic district, making it sting just a little bit more) would probably benefit due to the short term memory of voters.  But, here’s a reminder:

Instead of working in Albany during a budget crisis, he was in Jamaica on a “trade mission” (but he worked hard while he was there!) 

His promise of delivering $20,000 in funding to the Italian Festival allowed the organizers to hold a VIP party that had Thompson’ name on the invitation.  Public policy groups cried foul over that.  And on top of that, constituent groups also cried foul when he would show up with a big novelty check for their local programs (like little league), but then the real check never came.

Tax payer funded bulk mailings (1,162,866 pieces of mail) plus a 102 page softcover book about his legislative accomplishments (or at least ones he took credit for) seen as an attempt to bolster his 2010 campaign (p.s. it didn’t work).

And Thompson’s questionable role in the Aqueduct gaming deal: did he use the contract to fatten his campaign coffers? 

And,  in what may have been a case of sour grapes, Thompson’s staff may have shredded documents that would have been useful to his successor (unfinished projects and constituent contacts in the 60th district)

I think it’s great that Buffalo and WNY support recycling, but in some cases, seeing the same faces come back up time after time, election after election (win or lose), makes me think sometimes we’re putting these candidates in the wrong bin…