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During the preparations for Nik Wallenda's highwire walk over the Niagara Gorge, State Sen. George Maziarz (R-Newfane) and Falls Mayor Paul Dyster (D) did not appear together to discuss the walk. The two are seldom in the same room.
In Buffalo, there have been some suddenly public disagreements between two prominent Democrats, with Mayor Byron Brown and Congressman Brian Higgins opposed to each other on waterfront development and demolitions around the Peace Bridge.
Is it a case of "these things happen," or can disputes like this keep things from getting done around here? Does politics ever trump progress? Are there any "blood-feuds" anymore, or is it just a matter of passionate people arguing for those they represent?
Buffalo's Early News and WBEN.com take a look Tuesday morning.
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Prof. Kevin Hardwick, Erie Co. Legislator:
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Fomer Erie Dem. Chair Steve Pigeon:
"Nobody has a monopoly on the true facts and a true solution, and inevitably you are going to have different analysis playing out in a very personal way, "
- Bruce Fisher, Visiting Professor, Buffalo State College
On Maziarz & Dyster : "I like the idea of putting the two of them in a room and just working things out, but I think they'd kill each other first "
-- Rick Pfeiffer, a reporter at the Niagara Gazette.
Years after he worked at the top of Erie County government, Prof. Bruce Fisher at Buffalo State College can easily think of times when disputes erupt.
Sometimes they suddenly spring forward. Like recent disagreements between Brown and Higgins, and sometimes they become more protracted political battles, like between Dyster and Maziarz.
"The first thing you have to recognize is that differences of substance are sometimes going to play out politically,' says Fisher, a former Deputy County Executive under controversial county executive Joel Giambra.
"Nobody has a monopoly on the true facts and a true solution, and inevitably you are going to have different analysis playing out in a very personal way, "he says.
Fisher is among several who downplay the recent disagreements between Brown and Higgins- each taking opposing stances on the need to demolish houses near the Peace Bridge (Higgins for) , and city ownership of some waterfront land ( Brown, for).
"You know what ? Sometimes things boil over and then things get mended," says Fisher
Adds Len Lenihan, the Erie County Democratic Party Chair. " A lot of things in politics go on, sometimes things get over stated, over generalized, what have you"
The Maziarz/Dyster disagreements run deeper.
"I like the idea of putting the two of them in a room and just working things out, but I think they'd kill each other first , " says Rick Pfeiffer, a reporter at the Niagara Gazette.
Even Maziarz acknowledges a rift.
"The Mayor and I don't get along," he said recently on WBEN's Hardline program, adding that he feels Dyster is "highly partisan."
And like the years when Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown and then Assemblyman Sam Hoyt, both Democrats, would not be seen together, Republican Maziarz and Democrat Dyster don't join each other either
Langworthy says any Dyster/Maziarz disagreement that may have flared lately is specifically because of Dyster being jealous over Maziarz's lead role on securing Nik Wallenda's falls walk , while he characterizes any Higgins/Brown dispute as a turf battle between two "political machines"
"They come from different political operations," Langworthy says .