BY DYLAN SKRILOFF
It is all but official that Republican Chris Day, a 2014 Congressional candidate and the son and former campaign manager of Rockland County Ed Day, will be running for Orangetown supervisor in 2017. Chris Day told the Rockland County Times he was likely to run early August 2016, the same day Supervisor Andy Stewart announced he would not seek a fourth term in 2017.
With Stewart bowing out , the question remains, who will contest the up and coming Republican Day? Will he run unopposed? Will big vote-getter Councilman Jerry Bottari go for the position after only two years on the Orangetown Council? Or will perhaps a name from the past reemerge.
Chatter has traveled across the Rockland County politico-sphere that one Thom Kleiner, a 7-term Orangetown supervisor (1996-2010), who lost to County Executive C. Scott Vanderhoef in the 2009 county executive campaign and left elected office for the past several years, may take up the banner of the Democratic Party once more and challenge the would-be Republican stalwart Day.
Kleiner, who is currently the Hudson Valley representative to the commissioner of the New York State Department of Labor, said he’s heard the rumor that he’s running. He would not offer a conclusive yes or no answer to the matter because as an employee of the state’s Department of Labor, he cannot engage in any political activity.
“Since Andy Stewart announced he was not running, many people have encouraged me to take a look at the race. While that is gratifying, I am unable to comment further given my position with the state (Department of Labor).”
Since Kleiner would have to quit his job to run for office, he would be facing up to one year with no or low income should he run. And if he were to lose, which he must know would be a possibility given the popularity of the Day brand in Orangetown, Kleiner would be out both a job and an office.
While anything can and will happen, the Rockland County Times speculates the financial disincentive against a Kleiner run for supervisor would be considerable. And that disincentive grows when one considers that Kleiner’s opponent would be a favorite or at worst even odds to win the race.
The question remains an open one that will be dealt with come early 2017. And while we’re discussing 2017, the same question applies to what Democrat might challenge Chris Day’s father County Executive Ed Day in that year’s county executive contest.