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Jul 22, 2009 12:12 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Deal gives Kabot GOP nod for reelection

Jul 22, 2009 12:12 PM

Despite a vicious war of words between Southampton Town Supervisor Linda Kabot and Southampton Town Republican Party Chairman Marcus Stinchi that left the incumbent supervisor ostracized by party leaders, the two struck a deal on Monday, saying it was for the good of the party.

Ms. Kabot scored a coup, capturing the Republican Party nomination for reelection without having to wage a promised primary battle. She also added the Conservative Party nomination after the GOP nominee for supervisor, Southampton Town Conservative Party Chairman Jim Malone dropped his bid for supervisor.

It was a move intended to unite the parties and strengthen the GOP’s chances of holding on to a Town Board majority this fall, Ms. Kabot said.

Instead of running for supervisor, Mr. Malone will run with Republican incumbent Chris Nuzzi for the two Town Board seats up for grabs in November. Previous Republican nominee William Wright dropped his bid for the Town Board seat, making room on the ballot for Mr. Malone.

Mr. Wright said he found out about the changes to the slate late Monday afternoon—the last day for candidates to accept or decline a nomination. “I was asked to step down for the good of the party. And I did,” he said Tuesday.

Now, Ms. Kabot will be the Republican candidate in November facing Democratic challenger Anna Throne-Holst, and Mr. Malone and Mr. Nuzzi will face incumbent Town Councilwoman Sally Pope and challenger Bridget Fleming, the Democratic nominees.

Ms. Kabot said Mr. Stinchi contacted her at around 3 p.m. on Monday to inform her that, despite the Republican Committee’s resounding rejection of her at its convention in May—the vote was more than two-to-one in Mr. Malone’s favor—the nomination for supervisor was now hers.

Suffolk County Conservative Party Chairman Ed Walsh said Tuesday that Ms. Kabot would also be the Conservative Party candidate in November.

Ms. Kabot said Mr. Stinchi, who had been critical of Ms. Kabot’s leadership in the run-up to the party’s convention, agreed to give her the nomination on the condition that she drop challenges she and several others were waging for Republican committee seats held by Mr. Stinchi, Mr. Stinchi’s mother, Pat Stinchi, and former Town Supervisor Patrick Heaney. Were she successful in that effort at the party’s reorganization meeting in September, those party members would have lost their committee status.

Ms. Kabot said she agreed to back off on those challenges in return for the party’s nod.

“I’m very happy that the political leaders have come realize that we have a greater chance of success by joining forces and coming together,” she said in a statement issued Tuesday.

Mr. Malone did not return repeated calls seeking comment on the latest developments, which came on Monday, the last day for candidates to accept or reject nominations. Mr. Stinchi stated in a e-mail that he had no comments other than what had been expressed in the party’s press release.

The move toward unity comes after a bitter war of words between Ms. Kabot and GOP leaders, in particular Mr. Stinchi—exchanges that spoke to a dysfunctional party.

Before the party’s convention in May, Mr. Stinchi refused to endorse the sitting supervisor and said her nomination was not a foregone conclusion. In turn, Ms. Kabot alleged that GOP leaders had pressured her to stop going public with the town’s financial troubles, threatening to withhold the nomination unless she complied.

Ms. Kabot went so far as to charge Mr. Stinchi with preferring a “reign of terror” style of running the committee and a “dictatorial style” of governance for the town. Ms. Kabot claimed then that revealing the town’s fiscal woes only hurt the GOP and validated her reasons for challenging Mr. Heaney in 2007

In response, Mr. Stinchi said those accusations were not only “inaccurate but insulting” and later argued that Ms. Kabot’s rhetoric likely cost her the committee’s vote.

Ms. Kabot credits Mr. Stinchi’s change of heart to Mr. Walsh, who Ms. Kabot said saw beyond the GOP infighting to the general election. “He saw past the egos and personalities and realized that the best chances of being successful in November was to present the strongest, most unified ticket,” she said.

While the Republican Party will now be entering the election season as a united front, Ms. Kabot said she’d still like to see a change in the party’s leadership—including Mr. Stinchi.

“Some of the leaders in the committee are out of touch with the rank-and-file voters,” Ms. Kabot said. “They now see that I’m a force to be reckoned with.”

Mr. Walsh said Tuesday that the shift back to Ms. Kabot reflected the desire of both the Republican and Conservative parties to avoid a bloody primary battle that would only strengthen the Democrats’ hand in November. Ms. Kabot had filed the necessary petitions last week to force a primary for the GOP nomination.

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Oh great!!! So they've opted to go with more of "The Same Old - Same Old." The only thing that's missing form this antiquated ticket is the Heaney name. But never fear, you may be sure that he is very active in the background. How does this sound - Kabot; Malone; Nuzzi; Heaney? Do they think the voters are really that ignorant and unaware of these connections? Pure politics - nothing for the people!
By barberosa (39), Watermill on Jul 21, 09 10:53 AM
5 members liked this comment
Some coup! The pressure is on Ms Kabot now - She has bucked the Republican Party in the past election and that's been part of her appeal; the danger here is that she now associates herself too closely with 'good ole boys' and we get business as usual. Hopefully she'll continue on a partisan path and fix the mess the GOP created.
By North of Highway (280), Westhampton Beach on Jul 21, 09 11:00 AM
1 member liked this comment
Things get easier for the Democrats everyday.
By EastEnd68 (888), Westhampton on Jul 21, 09 12:01 PM
Well, it seems that the local GOP has top members in corrupt decision making....
By UNITED states CITIZEN (207), SOUTHAMPTON on Jul 21, 09 1:04 PM
i am sad to see that the local boy has bowed out of the running. it would have been nice to have someone on our side on the board.
By dee (14), southampton on Jul 21, 09 2:17 PM
1 member liked this comment
Supervisor Seat for Sale?
It didn’t take long for Southampton Town officials and party leaders to catch on to the politics of Illinois. This scheme sounds eerily familiar to the one I pulled this past winter. I just hope this one doesn't end in an indictment too.

Good Luck Southampton Town,
Fmr. Gov. Rod Blagojevich

By oceanview (15), hampton bays on Jul 21, 09 3:12 PM
2 members liked this comment
GOOD FOR YOU LINDA! See you in November!
By Sam (252), Westhampton Beach on Jul 21, 09 5:56 PM
1 member liked this comment
Remember that Heaney was supported by the Conservative Party when he lost to Linda. At this stage you don't know when and if his name will show up in the town's audit and financial mess. One thing is for sure, if Linda, Malone and Nuzzi win he'll have friends on the board that might just be able to keep his hands from showing too much dirt.
By Bob Whyte (48), Hampton Bays on Jul 21, 09 6:11 PM
1 member liked this comment
Mr. Malone was right in May when he questioned Kabot's abilities and called for a "new direction". That new direction will come from the Democrats this year.
By dagdavid (646), southampton on Jul 21, 09 6:51 PM
Once the audit goes to the DA, Heaney and Kagel (Brookhaven again) will be sweating! Very entertaining.
By kelbas (30), Southampton on Jul 21, 09 10:16 PM
2 members liked this comment
very entertaining indeed.....
By BIGjimbo12 (201), East Quogue on Jul 22, 09 2:11 AM
1 member liked this comment
At least the Titanic had a band...
By Lloyd Braun (3), Southampton on Jul 22, 09 12:15 PM
It seems to me that Mr. Stinchi had a reality check, and realized that nothing good was going to come from another contentious Primary battle like the one which left him with egg on his face two years ago, and that the only meaningful chance for the GOP to have any success in November, was to start acting like a real Town Leader and get everyone on the same track.

It's going to be a cat fight from here on in, but the lines are more clearly drawn at this point..
By Frank Wheeler (1826), Northampton on Jul 22, 09 12:23 PM
2 members liked this comment
We all know that every candidate is far from qualified to hold office and make knowledgable decisions!!!! So we don't vote for who we want, we vote against the worst of the worst. In this case Linda Kabot is not the worst. Please do not let Throne-Holst get in. Kabot is the least harmful at this stage.
By kpjc (161), east quogue on Jul 22, 09 2:39 PM
2 members liked this comment
Do you have NO shame Mrs Kabot,you would sell you reputation just for this,,Will Pat Heaney and Ms Kagel be at your side for a MUG SHOT it would make a pritty poster,I will but one or two on my lawn,
By Etians rd (543), Southampton on Jul 22, 09 4:51 PM
kpjc, Anna Throne-Holst is more than qualified and she has proven herself to be an advocate of reform and common sense government. Linda cannot say the same thing. She was rejected by her own party who said it was "time for a new direction" and that Linda has questionable abilities. The republicans have done an absolutely awful job for too long now. It is time to give the dems a chance to fix town hall.
By peoplefirst (787), Southampton on Jul 22, 09 5:05 PM
2 members liked this comment
Keep Kabot
By Sam (252), Westhampton Beach on Jul 22, 09 5:35 PM
1 member liked this comment
2 more years of this fool will equal another 10% tax hike.........minimum.

Dump Taxbot and find anyone else to clean up her mess.
By G (342), Southampton on Jul 22, 09 5:43 PM
peoplefirst, It must be understood that at times like this cost cutting and tightening the belt is primary. Ana Spend-Holst has shown no leadership in this department.
By kpjc (161), east quogue on Jul 22, 09 5:44 PM
1 member liked this comment
Ms Kabot's government is NOT transparent - Stop pointing fingers when you have skeletons in your closet which you are hiding. Ms Kabot should stop pointing fingers and start moving forward and not prevent the people who vote from communicating their concerns. You are running a dictatorship - shame on you.....
By Legal Immigrant (11), Southampton on Jul 22, 09 5:54 PM
As a Republican, I am sick to my stomach at this turn of events. Marcus Stinchi caved in to the pressure that Linda put on him. He basically sold his sole to the devil in order to retain his position as the head of the Republican Committee. Does he need the money that bad? Is his landscaping business hurting that much? His principles should be questioned and he should lose his position. Maybe he feels that giving Linda the chance to fail in November will rid him of her forever. I, for one, ...more
By bobalooey (45), East Quogue on Jul 23, 09 12:55 AM
2 members liked this comment
Linda was not appointed by some dictator. The PEOPLE voted Linda Kabot in. The people voted Skip Heaney out. The people signed Linda's petition. Give the people some credit and have a little respect for their vote, which was the majority vote. If youre angry, be angry at your peers. Stop complaining and get out and cast your vote. If the Dems won you wouldnt be complaining. Thats the way it works- someone has to win and someone has to lose. GET OVER IT
By Sam (252), Westhampton Beach on Jul 23, 09 7:06 AM
1 member liked this comment
Congratulations Linda, what a coup. Don’t underestimate Kabot again, I’m sure there is more to this story.
From all the stories in this paper and Newsday the Republican leader made some big mistakes in leadership this year and the past 2 years and let his personnel feelings interfere with decision making. The old way to doing things are over. It’s too bad they could not forgive her for that primary in 2007. It took the Conservative leader Ed Walsh to make the right decision in going with Kabot. ...more
Sep 24, 09 8:23 AM appended by MrRight
Congratulations Linda, what a coup. Don’t underestimate Kabot again, I’m sure there is more to this story.
By MrRight (22), bridgehampton on Jul 23, 09 8:23 AM
1 member liked this comment
Count On Kabot !
By PrivateerMatt (390), Weesuck Creek , EQ on Jul 23, 09 10:56 AM
The Southampton Town Republican Party got it right the first time. It's time for a change!
By WingMan (8), Southampton on Jul 23, 09 11:18 AM
PrivateerMatt-Count Kabot Out !!!
I keep looking at the picture with this article-that is one angry looking women.
By EastEnd68 (888), Westhampton on Jul 23, 09 12:49 PM
To MrRight in Bridgehampton,

I am not a Republican committeeman from East Quogue nor am I Mr. Wright's campaign manager. I just think that Marcus was a coward and placed his position above his principles. He should have gone to war with the committee's choices and let the chips fall where they may. This Town is tired of politics as usual and now that is what they will hav come November.
By bobalooey (45), East Quogue on Jul 23, 09 6:45 PM