Grimm Staff Pick Highlights Rift With Eaton, Deference to Conservative Chieftain Kassar
We all know that Chairman Eaton was heard talking up his special “relationship” with Congressman Grimm last month, which was revealed to be mere puffery and nothing more.
In a follow-up to that story I covered last month, a trusted Brooklyn Republican source has disclosed some interesting facts and observations about Mr. Eaton’s continued irrelevance in the scheme of GOP politics, particularly involving Rep. Grimm.
What we are beginning to see is the influence of the Brooklyn Conservatives (and by extension Sen. Marty Golden) and the increasingly diminishing role of the GOP Chairman in affecting the decisions of local Republican elected officials.
As evidence, my source points to the definitive evidence of the lack of influence Eaton has had on staff appointments for elected officials, which was first discussed on this blog in my prior piece.
The primary example of this? The choice of Liam McCabe as Brooklyn Director of Community Affairs for Grimm. McCabe is a long-time friend of Conservative Party Chieftain Jerry Kassar. (Aside–while at one time Mr. Kassar was highly critical of our blog and of various reformers, he has toned down his rhetoric of late from what we can tell, opting instead to avoid confrontation as the eddy of civil war turns in the Brooklyn GOP).
My source informs me that the choice of Mr. McCabe was not met with elation by Mr. Eaton.
“Eaton went through the roof when he found out about it after the fact,” my source informs me. “Eaton does not have any of ‘his’ Brooklyn Republican loyalists anywhere on Grimm’s staff.”
A salient point, indeed.
Nor have we seen any genuine evidence of Mr. Eaton’s impact on Nicole Malliotakis beyond an appearance at her swearing in.
Actually, it seems to be Sen. Golden keeping his hand on the reigns as the GOP’s Bay Ridge Duke drifts through the wind, his infamous paranoia over his chairmanship proving that he is his own worst enemy. Wisely, Sen. Golden has elected not to rock the boat within the party as he enjoys another term in a Senate that is now back in the hands of GOP control.
And why not?
It would be foolish and unnecessary for Sen. Golden to get involved in a civil war that’s of Craig Eaton’s making and no one else’s. If he is wise, he will wait it out and seek to make a deal with whichever side moves to the top…
Back to Mr. Kassar. While we have not had frequent occasion to discuss the relationship of Mr. Kassar and Mr. Eaton, our source says it’s rocky at best.
“It is no secret that Eaton is envious of Kassar and his influence in Brooklyn politics… Eaton is an observer and when he does act, he fails.”
Examples of Eaton’s ineffectiveness given by this source and others include the endorsement of Michael Allegretti, the Young Republican debacle, and the recent Executive Director controversy.
None of these decisions has earned him anything more than bad press and a lack of respect amongst party insiders.
So, are the sharks circling the GOP Duke in Bay Ridge?
We’ll have to keep our eyes out to see how events unfold in the coming months.
But one thing is certain: there is blood in the water.
(We invite comment via email by Mr. Kassar, Sen. Golden, Mr. Eaton, Mr. McCabe, or anyone else to continue this discussion–also, please comment below this post, as well)
On a personal/side note, it is good to see Rep. Grimm so active and throwing himself entirely into the task of representing the 13th Congressional district. He is an excellent face for the district and for what is going on nationwide in GOP politics. While the year is still young, we hope to have much more to cover on our blog as Congressman Grimm continues to make his way through the thicket of Washington politics.