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Feb 13, 2012 6:55 PMPublication: The East Hampton Press

Race For Congressional Seat Warms Up

Feb 14, 2012 4:52 PM

Although Election Day is still nine months away, sparks are already flying between Republicans Randy Altschuler and George Demos, who are vying for Democratic U.S. Representative Tim Bishop’s seat this November.

Mr. Altschuler, a businessman from St. James who lost by a razor thin margin to Mr. Bishop two years ago, announced last week that he was named a “contender” by the National Republican Congressional Committee’s Young Guns program, which aims to boost the campaigns of promising candidates running for Congress. The distinction was given to only 11 Republicans nationwide, said Chris Russell, Mr. Altschuler’s campaign consultant.

Jobs and the economy will be at the forefront of this year’s national election—two issues Mr. Bishop has failed on, said Mr. Russell.

“He’s a creature of Washington,” Mr. Russell said. “He’s presided over the nation’s debt exploding while unemployment exploded nationwide.”

Mr. Altschuler has racked up endorsements from the Suffolk County Conservative Party, the Suffolk County Republican Committee and House of Representatives Majority Leader Eric Cantor. He raised more funds than Mr. Bishop in last year’s final fiscal quarter $214,000 to $197,000—a fact he touted in a recent press release.

“After announcing that I was seeking a rematch in May, we’ve raised nearly $700,000,” he stated. “It’s almost unheard of for a challenger to out-raise a longtime incumbent congressman in a given quarter.”

If Mr. Altschuler couldn’t win in a year where large numbers of Republicans were elected nationwide, then he doesn’t deserve to run against Mr. Bishop again, said Mr. Demos, who plans to challenge Mr. Altschuler in a primary this year for the chance to compete for the seat.

Mr. Demos, of Ronkonkoma, denounced the Suffolk County Republican Committee’s endorsement, criticizing Mr. Altschuler’s record of outsourcing jobs through Office Tiger, a company he created in 2000 and sold in 2006. Mr. Demos said the outsourcing issue cost Mr. Altschuler the race two years ago.

“We cannot afford to have the debate with Tim Bishop in the fall, once again, to be centered on outsourcing,” Mr. Demos said. “I’m the only conservative in this race.”

In response to outsourcing claims, Mr. Altschuler has 
stated Office Tiger created 500 jobs in the United States. In a statement this week, Mr. Russell blasted Mr. Demos’s campaign, stating it is going “nowhere fast.”

“Mr. Demos has been flat out rejected by Suffolk County Republican and Conservative Party leaders, as well as by conservative grassroots activists throughout the district,” Mr. Russell said in a statement. “The result has been an anemic fundraising operation, and a campaign message that parrots Tim Bishop’s personal attacks against Randy, while failing to articulate any coherent message about how he would fix the economy, create jobs or restore opportunity and prosperity to struggling Long Island taxpayers and small businesses.”

In a move that Mr. Russell framed as a jab at Mr. Altschuler, Mr. Bishop recently took legislative aim at outsourcing. He and other elected officials are spearheading the Outsourcing Accountabilty Act, which would require publicly traded companies to disclose the numbers of people employed in the U.S. and internationally. In a recent statement, Mr. Bishop claimed that from 2000 to 2009, multinational corporations cut 2.9 million U.S. jobs while adding 2.4 million jobs overseas.

“All jobs are not created equal, and Americans deserve to know whether the jobs a company is creating are in America or overseas,” said Mr. Bishop. “The first step in incentivizing the creation of jobs in America is having an honest assessment of our companies’ employment practices and empowering the American people to reward good corporate citizens who hire American workers, if they choose to do so.”

The legislation is not a political move, said Oliver Longwell, a spokesman for Mr. Bishop. He said it’s an initiative the congressman has been working on since before Mr. Altschuler stepped into the picture.

“It’s an effort to stop the unfortunate disappearance of American jobs, or to try to keep the government from subsidizing companies that participate in sending jobs overseas,” Mr. Longwell said.

As for Mr. Altschuler outraising Mr. Bishop in last year’s final fiscal quarter, Mr. Longwell said the difference is “negligible,” also claiming that the majority of Mr. Bishop’s campaign money comes 
from within his district, while a majority of Mr. Altschuler’s campaign donors hail from New York City. He also pointed out that Mr. Altschuler, a millionaire, has a self-funding advantage,

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Here we go again... let's try focusing on the abysmal performance of the incumbent Tim Bishop rather than the political talking points accusing the challenger of outsourcing. For the record, outsourcing has been shown to increase net jobs and GDP and let's not confuse outsourcing with offshoring.
By Mr. Snerdley (397), Southampton on Feb 16, 12 6:53 PM
1 member liked this comment
Your post brings nothing of substance to the debate; it is sweepingly vague and platitude filled - I would like to know more of what you speak. You have charged "abysmal performance" by Bishop; please tell us specifically what you are talking about.

You talk of outsourcing "talking points" but fail to address the charges that the challenger made a thriving business of contracting with American companies to perform functions overseas that American workers had been performing. Generalities ...more
By VOS (1241), WHB on Feb 16, 12 7:23 PM
1 member liked this comment
Let's also not forget the '04 tax holiday, which is the root reason for the mentioned legislation. Repatriate profits, cut almost 100,000 jobs in America, then expand your foriegn workforce. 92 cents of every repatriated dollar went not to job creation, but to executive compensation. This can be backed up by multiple studies, including a Congressional Subcommittee investigation.

Offshoring, or outsourcing, it's one less job in our home market.
Feb 16, 12 7:41 PM appended by Mr. Z
"but to executive compensation, and flipping the money BACK into offshore tax havens."
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Feb 16, 12 7:41 PM
"Offshoring, or outsourcing, it's one less job in our home market."

Nice try, but extremely short sighted, inaccurate, and not to two completely different things so please don't minimize the distinct differences as Tim Bishop and his boss are guilty of offshoring jobs which removes all aspects of the production process vs. inefficient elements. Outsourcing is clearly unfortunate for those whose jobs are being outsourced. However, with the resulting bump in short-term unemployment, its ...more
Feb 16, 12 9:12 PM appended by Mr. Snerdley
Tim's abysmal performance: Stimulus funds received for district 1 which cost the tax payers $1.4 million per job. Excellent work Tim!
By Mr. Snerdley (397), Southampton on Feb 16, 12 9:12 PM
1 member liked this comment
The big picture is that no matter what they save, they'd rather not spend the money on an American worker, when they can get the same labor far cheaper in a foreign market.

If you think that the "money saved" expands anything more than executive compensation, and stock buybacks, and profits stashed in offshore tax havens, I've got a nice bridge in Brooklyn you need to see...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Feb 16, 12 9:17 PM
Nothing like wage erosion and job losses in tandem as well.
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Feb 16, 12 9:45 PM
Oh there are many things like wage erosion and job losses in tandem. But what an odd reminiscence
By TianarRob (10), Southampton on Feb 17, 12 2:07 PM
You might think it was derived from "23 things they don't tell you about 'capitalism' " ...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Feb 17, 12 11:21 PM
L'il Tim has been a rubber stamp for the most profligerate spending President in the history of the USA. Combining that with his voting in lockstep with Princess Pelosi while she was speaker rnders him unfit to hold office as a representitive of our district. Has he ever held a real job in the private sector? Does he have any knowledge of fiscal responsibility, has he ever run a business, has ever created ONE job?
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Feb 17, 12 1:33 PM
1 member liked this comment
key word is WAS.
By razza5350 (1911), East Hampton on Feb 17, 12 2:02 PM
Tim bishop worked as a provost for a non profit college that is no longer in existence due to financial ruin. Let's not stretch it Phil. I also loved the guys comment below calling Obama a conservative. Got a good chuckle on that one.
By razza5350 (1911), East Hampton on Feb 18, 12 7:35 AM
Tim Bishop never held a private sector job.
By TianarRob (10), Southampton on Feb 17, 12 2:07 PM
1 member liked this comment
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By Lets go mets (377), Southampton on Feb 17, 12 4:39 PM
I'm tired of all this hyperbole. Number one, outsourcing is not a crime against humanity. It's a fact of life. It's also not Randy's greatest liability. People see him as an ambitious, Romney-esque guy who came here to buy a congressional seat and is willing to say anything and pander to anyone to get elected. That's all there is to it.

Also, Tim Bishop is not an "abysmal failure" and Obama is not the worst president in history. That's insane. Obama is a conservative - yes, CONSERVATIVE ...more
By Byakuya (1), Westhampton Beach, NY on Feb 17, 12 6:08 PM
By SHNative (554), Southampton on Feb 17, 12 7:40 PM
Bishop all the way
By DJ9222 (85), southampton on Feb 17, 12 10:30 PM
ANOTHER press release from the Altschuler camp? Come on, Randy, show that your really want to meet us folks. The "Up With Randy!" 4th of July free barbecue and music festival at Grabeski Airport would be a perfect opportunity to press the flesh and disabuse us of the negative opinions posted above. What could it cost, three months of your income from outsourcing profits?
By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Feb 18, 12 2:08 PM
he's outsourcing is nothing compared to Obama using tax payer stimulus money to outsource jobs
By razza5350 (1911), East Hampton on Feb 19, 12 2:03 PM
I do not know how to cut and paste on this site but if you google Schumer outsourcing stimulus you will see tons of articles. The Economyincrisis.org article was particulary good. Their was also a huge special on ABC about it as wellif you are going to blast Randy you should be blasting your messiah as well but we know that will never happen
By razza5350 (1911), East Hampton on Feb 20, 12 7:33 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By razza5350 (1911), East Hampton on Feb 20, 12 9:28 AM
Apparently, government contracts going to the lowest bidder is no longer capitalism, it's outsourcing.

Too funny...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Feb 20, 12 7:27 PM
I am not sure why the link I posted was flagged but I will try and and re post. If you google Schumer Chian outsourcing you will pull up a weatlth of information that pertains to the topic we are discussing. If you want to type in one particular article you can try economyincrisis.org/content/outsourcing-ameicas-stimulus-jobs
By razza5350 (1911), East Hampton on Feb 21, 12 9:57 AM
Nobody has outsourced more jobs overseas and provided more funds to stimulate foreign economies that President Barack Obama. Be educated and find out for yourself. From providing massive defense contracts to Brazil instead of our domestic firms like Boeing to providing $800 Million for the Arab spring countries. When you give funds of that magnitude to foreign competitors, in an attempt to bring wipe out or position in global leadership, it dwarfs anything a private citizen might do with a private ...more
By SharonY (3), East Hampton on Feb 20, 12 7:59 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By TianarRob (10), Southampton on Feb 20, 12 11:08 AM
So, capitalism rewarding the lowest bidder no longer suits you?
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Feb 20, 12 7:23 PM
A former congressman says it's hypocritical of President Barack Obama to call on U.S. companies to "insource" jobs while he is choosing to outsource a lucrative government aircraft contract to a foreign company.

The Kansas City Star recently reported that Kansas-based Hawker Beechcraft Corp. filed a lawsuit, forcing the Air Force to halt work on a $354-million contract with a Brazilian company to build a light attack aircraft. The Pentagon awarded the contract to Nevada-based ...more
By TianarRob (10), Southampton on Feb 20, 12 11:11 AM
Do any of you have the realization that an "idea based" economy is the desired structure of "free market" believers, such as Alan Greenspan?

The "neo-liberals" are wholly responsible for not only the creation of these practices, but are responsible for moving the economy in said direction. They believe that it is a "natural progression", of a post industrial economy. And, they also have no qualms about driving the price of service industry labor through the roof ($100+/hr.), and thereby ...more
Feb 20, 12 2:11 PM appended by Mr. Z
Crap, forgot MBS...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Feb 20, 12 2:11 PM
Z glad to hear you can run the country better than anyone else has previously. Hypotheical...You are now in charge of the US economy. What is your solution for economic Utopia
By razza5350 (1911), East Hampton on Feb 21, 12 9:59 AM
Dow hits 13K. The next bubble is on the way.

More to follow when I can sit down later...
Feb 21, 12 11:54 AM appended by Mr. Z
FYI, "Liar's Poker" is NOT a how-to manual...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Feb 21, 12 11:54 AM
Bear with it, and you might like the end:

The flaw in your arguement is that there can be no "economic Utopia". That defies any understanding of basic human psychology, like the assumption that the market can regulate itself without any oversight, or regulation. Pure anarchy is not possible, because most people who attain power are hardly altruistic, rarely civllly moral, virtuous and scrupulous. If the economic engine known as Wall St. was in any way altruistic any longer, we wouldn't ...more
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Feb 21, 12 7:57 PM
1. Im sorry I asked the question
2. I agree with you in regards to derivates
3. Trust me I know your position on the Glass Steagall act.and there are people such has John MCcain who agree with your position. There are also people who disagree. I do feel reinstating the act would be very difficult at best.
4. I disagree on your concept of a well managed welfare state. its impossible
5. In theory I agree with using gold as the standard but am unsure if at this point it would ...more
By razza5350 (1911), East Hampton on Feb 22, 12 7:05 AM
Don't be sorry you asked.

At least you know we are on the same page about some things.

There is no one perfect solution, in an imperfect Union...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Feb 22, 12 8:12 PM
George Demos would be the better candidate for the Republicans. Unlike Randy, he isn't a carpetbagger, an outsourcer, or a proven loser. Also unlike Randy, he hasn't recently issued statements on birth control that put him in direct opposition to (my guess) 80% of the people in the First District. In that sense, George's negatives are great.
By Turkey Bridge (1979), Quiogue on Feb 26, 12 4:41 AM