Niagara Gazette

Opinion

April 5, 2013

HAMILTON: Steed let Lora Allen down

Niagara Gazette — If anyone expected any more out of Niagara County’s Legislator Owen T. Steed than the performance that he has yielded over the last 15 months, then it should be apparent by now that they expected more than what he can give. He is a nice enough guy, but he just doesn’t have what it takes to properly represent his 4th District constituents.

In fact, he may be doing more harm than good for the people whom he is supposed to be championing. After his weak and near capitulating defense of the Democratic elections commissioner, the best thing that I can say about him at this is juncture in his tenure is that at least he didn’t cry when he seemingly hung her out to dry.

If anyone had tuned into LCTV and watched Steed’s performance on the legislative floor during the most recent legislature meeting, then his words and actions, or lack thereof, in the defense of Lora Allen should have felt a flash of embarrassment flood through their bodies.

Like me, Allen is one of Steed’s own constituents, and I believe that he has let her down and certainly know, even though my expectations of him were initially low, that he even let me down.

For those of you who don’t know, here is what happened.

The Niagara County Democrats recently named Allen as their elections commissioner. In fact, Allen is the first black elections commissioner in the county’s history. However right or wrong that the majority caucus might have been, they passed a resolution condemning Allen for not firing her deputy.

With Quixotic resignation, Steed should have lead the fight in her defense, even if the effort would turn out to be nothing more than tilting at windmills.

Instead of Steed defending one of his own constituents, he abandoned that fight to his Niagara Falls colleagues, Legislators Dennis Virtuoso and Jason Zona. They were more like Miguel de Cervantes’ Don Quixote, galloping in full charge towards Allen’s accusers, while Steed followed far behind them as if he were Sancho Panza on the back of a slow donkey.

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