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The Saratogian Newsroom blog, complete with thoughts and commentary from our newsroom staff and regular posts on happenings around town.

Wednesday, November 4

Not too much adjustment needed

I have to admit, I'm not sure what to write for my first post-election post, so I'll just write what's on the top of my mind at this moment.

First of all, I'd like to thank the 3,000 readers who used last night's live blog to follow the city elections. The flexibility and easy access this blog provides us in the newsroom is, I think, a real benefit to readers, and last night's readership numbers prove that you are taking advantage of it.

The readership numbers mean that about a tenth of the city's population chose this blog over TV news to follow the election (or as a supplement). I'd further parse that by noting that about 7,000 voters participated in yesterday's election, roughly a fifth of the city's population, and nearly half of voters in the city turned to us for Election Day coverage.

This, I believe is the power of the local media. No other media outlet covered the four contested city races in as much detail as we did -- most focused on the Mayor's race, which is silly considering our form of government -- and readers clearly recognize that, so thank you.

I will admit that I spent some time last night in a mild state of dismay, fretting about how I was going to learn all the new faces on the city council, but then realized that I was acting foolishly, as Richard Wirth is the only new face, and because he has regularly attended council meetings for the past two years, I know his face very well.

In addition, his likely choice of deputy, Frank Dudla, was one of the first people I met upon taking this job in 2007. In short, I think Wirth's transition into office, from a press perspective, will be smooth, as I think we already have a good rapport. I am looking forward to building on our relationship. Plus, we're both from "downstate."

I will also say, though, that Commissioner Kim was another of the first people I met back in 2007, after he won election to his second term. Because I first covered the City Council during the lame duck phase of the 2006-2007 term, I have a longer-standing relationship with Kim than I do with some of his colleagues on the current council.

You can have your opinion on the commissioner, but I will say this: his passion at the council table was good for selling newspapers. I also feel that I have a good rapport with him, and I wish him the best as returns his primary focus to his law practice.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrew J Bernstein

During Wirth's interview with your editorial board he said his first priority would be protecting against terrorist attacks. He also said he was planning to make Caroline Street businesses pay for private security guards. It should be pretty interesting to see how he does with those two ideas.

November 5, 2009 at 5:35 AM 
Blogger Andrew J. Bernstein said...

anon 5:35 a.m.:
I believe Mr. Wirth is talking about preparedness in relation to terrorism.

On the Caroline Street issue, however, I agree that it will be interesting to see how that idea goes over with business owners, and with the police.

November 5, 2009 at 1:31 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrew J Bernstein:

For the record:

Saratogian Question: "What's the top concern? What's the number one?"

Richard Wirth Answer: "Terrorism."

November 5, 2009 at 10:32 PM 
Blogger Andrew J. Bernstein said...

No, the question I asked was "What is the top concern for public safety facing the city?"

November 5, 2009 at 11:27 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrew J Bernstein:

Why don't you let readers just look at and listen to the video of the Saratogian editorial board's interview with Wirth?

Let them decide whether they're going to believe their eyes and ears or believe you.

Wirth said terrorism is his number one concern. Plain and simple.

November 6, 2009 at 7:44 AM 

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