Indicted Congressman Chris Collins—disdain for whom is now officially a nonpartisan, ecumenical pursuit in local politics—in running to retain his seat after all, despite declaring that he would not do so in August.
Indicted Congressman Chris Collins—disdain for whom is now officially a nonpartisan, ecumenical pursuit in local politics—in running to retain his seat after all, despite declaring that he would not do so in August.

Ups and Downs, September 19

by / Sep. 19, 2018 1pm EST


Vontae Davis: Bills fans have finally been given the hero they’ve been seeking all these years, the guy with enough chutzpah to take a deep whiff of a home opener at New Era Field and do what we all want to do and just walk away. Two completely terrible and forgettable games into the season and all Bills fans have to show for it is two gorgeous late summer Sundays wasted. Vontae “Bartleby” Davis, you are our shaman; you have shown us the way. May we all be so strong. Former Bills lineman and great Twitter follow Chris Hairston shared this on Davis: “He doesn’t owe one player, coach, or fan anything for how he decided to do this. Best wishes to him going forward.” All this smoke being blown at Davis about him disrespecting the team is hilarious, especially given that in the same game in which he retired, reserve running back Taiwan Jones lost his helmet during a play and was drilled headfirst into the Wenro village site underneath New Era Field. Jones, roughly the same age as Davis, is making $880,000 this year, which of course doesn’t include any kind of health coverage after retirement. For reasons amusing and very real, Vontae Davis has forever etched himself into the vocabulary of Western New York, and that’s just awesome.

Chris Collins decided this week, on advice from his lawyers, that he will be staying in the race for the 27th Congressional District seat, earning an ever rare up from us. It had been reported that Collins would simply slide into a supposedly elected government position in his hometown, opening the ballot to whatever sweepstakes winner GOP party bosses vetted and anointed: Carl Paladino? Ray Walter? Stefan Mychajliw? But things are looking up for the citizens of Clarence: They will not have to endure the service of a man under federal indictment. Unless, of course, the citizens of the 27th District opt to send Collins back to Congress. Whatever ploy the local GOP leadership used to get Collins off the ballot was sure to draw a lawsuit from Democrats, and Collins’s lawyers worried that such legal action might jeopardize Collins’s release on bail in his federal case. We find it hilarious that in the end, Collins served himself, spurning local party brass, who were neither informed of nor pleased by his decision to run. What’s that saying about karma? Something like you lay down with dogs, then you make your bed and shit with fleas? Let the voters of the 27th decide: Chris “I am not a crook” Collins, or the moderate corporate lawyer from Grand Island, Nate McMurray, who, according to the same folks who lay down with Collins, is a “radical leftist” or a “left-wing extremist.” Buckle up.


Us, The Public: We went a very Billsy 0-4 in our candidate endorsements for Democratic primaries last week. You should know by now we’re a lot like Sean McDermott’s group, looking for moral victories and things we can build on. We went back and looked at the tape, scoured our emails and texts, because it starts with us first. That 0-4, that’s on us. We need to put our candidate in positions to succeed and when that doesn’t happen, we need to re-evaluate our entire process, dot every I, cross every T. We don’t accept failure in our group, and we don’t accept failure among ourselves individually. We’ve been having some very frank conversations internally, good conversations, and we’re moving forward.

Going to Vontae on this second down, right here, right now.

For third down, however, we go to attorney Thomas Burton: The lawyer, who frequently represents Buffalo police officers who are involved in incidents of violence, is suing Carmelo Parlato, a Buffalo real estate agent, for comments Parlato made on an article in the Buffalo News more than a year ago. Parlato hypothesized in a comments thread that the officers who killed Jose Hernandez-Rossy in Black Rock on May 7, 2017 had stopped the victim to shake him down for drugs. In March of this year, Burton filed a defamation suit against Parlato on behalf of the two officers, Justin Tedesco and Michael Acquino, prompting many questions: Are commenters on Buffalo News threads liable for the opinions they express? And, if your intention is to tamp down a theory that casts a bad light on your client, is airing that theory and testing its veracity in open court good lawyering? Read the whole story.

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