A few months ago, Representative Chris Lee (R-N.Y.) got in trouble for trawling Craigslist in search of some extramarital sexytime action for his carefully cultivated "divorced lobbyist" persona. With a quickness, Lee resigned from his seat, and as he served New York's 26th District -- which includes the Northern suburbs of Buffalo -- speculation began immediately that it might be a ripe target for failed gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino. That speculation was quickly put to rest:
Shortly after Rep. Chris Lee (R - NY 26th District) abruptly resigned on Wednesday, several people tweeted "Run, Carl Run."
It turns out, Buffalo developer Carl Paladino is not interested in running for Congress when a special election is called by the governor.
The former Republican Candidate for governor told 2 On Your Side on Wednesday night that he will not run for the spot.
Still, one might wonder why it was that Paladino was passing on the opportunity to come to Washington. At least part of the reason was seemingly revealed by the Buffalo News' James Heaney earlier this week:
Carl Paladino's campaign stiffed about a dozen consultants, vendors and staff members for some $130,000 in salaries, fees and expenses, according to numerous veterans of his failed gubernatorial bid.
They are pressing for payment from a campaign committee, Paladino for the People, that is deep in debt. Public records show the committee has a balance of only $5,305 and debts of $6.1 million, most of them loans from the candidate.
To which Paladino responded, in Paladino-esque fashion:
You received a message on your blog from an unidentified, disaffected campaign malcontent who has no regard for truth or facts and you think you have a scoop. You don't. There are people who didn't get paid for good reason. Everyone who deserved to be paid was paid. They can go to court if they have a complaint. What business is it of yours? It's a civil matter.
Remember if you write something and have actual knowledge that what you write is not true, it obviates the need to prove malice even for a public person. In any event I believe we can prove malice. I caution you to be careful. Don't for a minute think that I won't haul you into court and subpoena every e-mail and document you, spineless and Evans ever wrote about me. I can't wait to depose the three of you. You better not destroy the records. Judges don't like people who do that.
You sit in a big room with many people who don't respect or like you or your fearless editor and publisher and they watch what you do. They are good people with integrity and honor and they want the best for their community. They don't like elitism nor do they like editorializing on the front page. Truth is truth. Give it up Jim. You are a messed up dude.
That's just part of a terrifically unhinged rant, which you can read in its entirety here.
So those are the two major impediments to Paladino's electoral ambitions. First, he's screwed over a lot of the people who worked on his gubernatorial campaign. And second, his major accomplishment as a candidate has been to remind people that he's a huge, huge jerk.