Scozzafava Quits GOP Leadership Position; Still In Republican Party

<p>Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava</p>
Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava

Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava faced the music Monday for her decision to endorse a Democrat in the race for Congress after Republicans all but abandoned her candidacy.

Scozzafava was removed as Leader Pro Tempore of the Assembly’s Republican conference. Minority leader Brian Kolb said in a statement that Scozzafava stepped down voluntarily.

“Today, I had a thorough and frank discussion with Assemblywoman Scozzafava. As a result, Dede has tendered, and I accepted, her resignation as our Conference’s Leader Pro Tempore. Over the coming weeks, I will be assessing who will serve as our Conference’s next Leader Pro Tempore to lead our Assembly floor debates.”

Scozzafava received more than $16,000 a year for the position.  She represents the northern tier of towns in Oswego County as an Assemblywoman.

Scozzafava was running third in the three-way race for Congress when she decided, on the eve of the election, to quit the race. National conservatives had slammed her for her support of abortion rights, gay marriage and the President’s stimulus package, though she was an orthodox Republican on nearly all other matters.

Conservatives made a national cause out of Conservative Party candidate Doug Hoffman, funnelling millions of dollars to his campaign.

After Scozzafava quit, the attacks continued. The next day, she endorsed Democrat Bill Owens, who won the race by a few thousand votes. He’s the first Democrat to represent most of the district since the end of the Civil War.

Scozzafava hasn’t said whether she’ll remain a Republican or accept offers to join the Democrats or Independence Party, or whether she’ll just retire.

Meantime, she is now a verb.

The Urban Dictionary, an informal dictionary of slang terms, has added her to its list. “Scozzafavaed” is to be purged of moderation. You can even buy the term on a mug, suitable for sending to the next candidate to get the treatment.