First Amendment Club Meets to Discuss Hydrofracking
by Artvoice Staff (@Artvoice) - posted 3:56 pm, July 30, 2012
Hydrofracking was the only entrée on the menu on Elmwood Avenue Friday night as the First Amendment Club called together a General Assembly for only the third time in its history. According to Club Vice President Abi Echevarria “we have always played a major role in choosing Western New York’s representatives in Albany and this year we are more capable than ever. We will have a direct impact on deciding who goes to Albany and who doesn’t.”
The reason for Echevarria’s optimism is redistricting. Earlier this year when the Republicans voted to increase the size of government, they gerrymandered the state senate after signing a pledge not to. The Democrats followed suit by gerrymandering the state assembly. The two political parties always put politics first and people last and then tell you they do the opposite. You would have to have less common sense than the politicians themselves to believe them.
While the state assembly has been dead set against polluting the air and water around us with cancer causing chemicals, the state senate is up for grabs. In the 63rd district there are two contenders, state senator Tim Kennedy and Erie County Legislative Chairwoman Betty Jean Grant.
When asked about fracking Tuesday night, Kennedy defaulted to an explanation that any clear understanding of the issue awaited completion of a DEC study, seemingly not aware that the DEC is the most corrupt agency in the state. Grant on the other hand is completely against poisoning the air and water around us, she held a meeting Thursday night to inform her constituents of the dangers. Many people now know DEC stands for the Department of Environmental Corruption.
In the 60th district everything is very different, there are eight contenders, five political parties and three primaries. Democrats Al Coppola, Chuck Swanick and Mike Amodeo. Republicans Kevin Stocker and Mark Grisanti. Independence Marie Clark, Brian Siklinski and Mark Grisanti. The only two names that will definitely be on the ballot in November are Chuck Swanick (Conservative) and Gregory Davis (Working Families). The others will have to battle it out in September. And this is what is so great!
When the NYS Senate broke its word and gerrymandered the 60th district it put the three largest chapters of the First Amendment Club all in one district, something that’s never been done before. Zach Braunscheidel’s group in Hamburg and Mike Dantonio’s group in the Tonawandas are now in the same district with North Buffalo and Black Rock/Riverside thus ensuring that hydrofracking will be the number one issue of this year’s election cycle.