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to the editor:

"run, harold, run" (editorial, jan. 21)? a really bad mistake! mr. ford has been in manhattan for a whole three years. what does he know about us or our sister boroughs? because he has chosen to live here, i have to ask, "mr. ford, do you know me?" of course not! but jerry nadler does, as does carolyn maloney, charlie rangel, david paterson, chuck schumer and kirsten gillibrand, to name just a few.

no, i'm not an elected official. i am a very dedicated democratic activist who is really, really deep down grassroots. i am active in my democrat club (community free democrats) and i have volunteered in a wide range of campaigns. i have crossed rivers and borders, autoed, bused, trained and planed.

as with all activists, i want to know my candidates and i want them to know me, my community, my borough, city and state. in his three (whole) years in manhattan, has mr. ford made any attempt to learn about new york city politics, let alone downstate and upstate? does mr. ford know that there are democrat clubs throughout the city? if he does, has he attended even one meeting? there are so many questions i would pose to mr. ford, but he doesn't know me and, more important, i don't know enough about him (i'm probably one of a very few who actually knows who mr. ford is).

yes, i am one who appreciates primaries. i've participated in too many to count. among the things i'd like to know about mr. ford is, what have you done in new york that you feel qualifies you to be our junior senator?"

hilda b. classon

west 86th street

to the editor:

i agree with "run, andrew, run; run, harold, run" and have to ask: is sen. charles schumer afraid of his own shadow?

youhave to wonder what schumer and democrats areafraid of if there is a primary. why is the new york state democratic party establishment in a panic over former tennessee sen. harold fordrunningagainst interim sen. kristen gillibrand? there are24 democratic members of congress, 32 state senators and 108 state assembly members, along with dozens of mayors and county executives who could have beenpotential candidates. how patheticthat the only person brave enough to offer an alternativeisa political carpetbagger who has been a resident for only three years? then again,hillary clinton conveniently becamea new york residentin far less time before winning asenate seat.

republicans are in worse shape going into 2010. they arestillunable to find any serious challengers who can raise the millions of dollars necessary to challengeeither gillibrand,schumer, gov. david paterson, comptroller tom dinapoli or attorney general andrew cuomo. it appears the gop has no team to put on the field.

as the late president franklin d. roosevelt would say, "we have nothing to fear, but fear itself." lighten up, schumer,and allow the voters-rather than yourself-to decide who our second senatorshould be.both you andthe winner of any democratic primaryfor either senator,governor or any statewide office will be theodds on favoriteto win the general election against any republicans. democrats have an enrollment edge of more than two million voters and millions of dollars more in campaign funds. republicans aredavidversus the democrats' goliath.

larry penner

great neck, long island

letters have been edited for clarity, style and brevity.

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