Stunning Result Acts As Ultimate Referendum On Obama Presidency

Updated at 12:48 a.m., Sept. 14, 2011

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Republicans have scored an upset victory in a New York City House race that became a referendum on President Barack Obama’s economic policies.

Retired media executive and political novice Bob Turner defeated Democratic state Assemblyman David Weprin in a special election Tuesday to succeed Rep. Anthony Weiner, a seven-term Democrat who resigned in June after a sexting scandal.

The heavily Democratic district spanning parts of Queens and Brooklyn had never sent a Republican to the House. But frustration with the continued weak national economy gave Republicans the edge.

WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell: It’s About More Than The 9th Congressional District

Turner has vowed to bring business practicality to Washington and push back on spending and taxes.

With more than 80 percent of precincts reporting, Turner had 54 percent of the vote to Weprin’s 46 percent in unofficial results.

“We’ve been asked by the people of this district to send a message to Washington,” Turner told supporters after the landmark win. “I hope they hear it loud and clear. We’ve been told this is a referendum. Mr. President, we are on the wrong track. We have had it with an irresponsible fiscal policy which endangers the entire economy.”

Weprin did not immediately concede.

The heavily Democratic district, which spans parts of Queens and Brooklyn, had never sent a Republican to the House. But frustration with the continued weak national economy gave Republicans the edge.

Turner has vowed to bring business practicality to Washington and push back on spending and taxes.

The race was supposed to be an easy win for Democrats, who have a 3-1 ratio registration advantage in the district.

Weprin, a 56-year-old Orthodox Jew and member of a prominent Queens political family, seemed a good fit for the largely white, working-class district, which is nearly 40 percent Jewish.

But voter frustration with Obama put Weprin in the unlikely spot of playing defense. A Siena Poll released Friday found just 43 percent of likely voters approved of the president’s job performance, while 54 percent said they disapproved. Among independents, just 29 percent said they approved of Obama’s job performance.

Turner, a 70-year-old Catholic, vowed to push back on Obama’s policies if elected. He received help from prominent Republicans including former Mayor Rudy Giuliani, whose much-praised stewardship of the city after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks was recalled during the 10th anniversary of the attacks last weekend.

Weprin became embroiled in New York-centric disputes over Israel and gay marriage, which cost him some support among Jewish voters.

Orthodox Jews, who tend to be conservative on social issues, expressed anger over Weprin’s vote in the Assembly to legalize gay marriage. In July, New York became one of six states to recognize same-sex nuptials.

Former Mayor Ed Koch, a Democrat, endorsed Turner in July as a way to “send a message” to Obama on his policies toward Israel. And Weprin was challenged on his support of a proposed Islamic center and mosque near the World Trade Center site, in lower Manhattan.

The Democratic Party enlisted two of its biggest guns, former President Bill Clinton and Gov. Andrew Cuomo, to record phone calls for Weprin. And Democrats relied on organized labor and other affiliated groups to bring voters to the polls.

The House seat opened up when Weiner was pushed by party leaders to resign after sending sexually provocative tweets and text messages to women he met online.

The trouble for Weiner, who served seven terms, began when a photo of a man’s crotch surfaced on his Twitter feed. He initially denied the photo was of him but later admitted it was.

Weiner, who’s married, resigned June 16 after two weeks of fighting off pressure to step aside. He apologized for “the embarrassment that I have caused” and said he hoped to continue to fight for the causes dear to his constituents.

In a special election in May, Democrat Kathy Hochul won a heavily Republican upstate district after pledging to protect Medicare, the popular government health care plan for seniors.

The state replaced outdated lever-operated voting machines last year in favor of paper ballots and optical scanners, which take more time to close and process. Polls closed at 9 p.m. Tuesday, and results trickled in slowly, but a Board of Elections spokeswoman said the vote-tallying system was running smoothly and there were no problems to report.

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments (66)
  1. tom420000 says:

    looks like hes about to march right into 6 foot hole next

  2. Glenn says:

    This is more about the incomptiency of the Democratic party putting up a WEAK candidate in a district that had had some of the more vocal and infulential members in congress in recent history (going all the way back to Ferraro) than Turner or the Republicans. Weprin was everything the dems aren’t supposed to be…old money, weak, and not well spoken. I commend turner. What worries me more is that my area (Kissena) will be sacrificed to make numbers for an Asian Packed district. As for turner, enjoy your 6 months before your district is fused and Ackerman kicks your butt. Tough loss but with redistricting, a little hollow…still an embarassment for the Dems, proof that the republican’s true strength is orginization and leadership of which the Dems have ZERO…really disgusted.

    1. Philip Scharfy says:

      Spin spin, spin…

  3. Gino says:

    THIS IS FANTASTIC!!!!!!!!!! YES!!!!!! soon the WHITE HOUSE will have a new resident as well………………..HALLELUIA!!!!!!!

  4. tj bentley says:

    Sending a message never hurts. In this case there are few if any that can say that they are happy with the economy . Will turners victory be a heads up to Obama???
    Probably not as Obama shouldn’t need a message to start doing some creative tax incentives for companies to bring back jobs to america.

    1. Philip Scharfy says:

      So why hasn’t the Dems or Obama repealed these job sucking treaties like NAFTA?

  5. If this is an Israel issue, it’s a moot point nationally. The diaspora isn’t as robust in swing states, Florida aside….If it’s just cantankerous voters, that’s a different story.

  6. Jewfromhell says:

    Congrats to you Bob you are the man. Up yours Comrade Barry!

    1. lisa2010 says:

      i guess america deserve what they going to get.. all the cuts will be affected in2013. slash social security, medicare and medicaid..police departments, firemen, first responders.. you;ll see changes, God forbid.. Washington will be call “Beverly Hills Washington”… they also planning on cutting back education so we’ll be stupid enough to bow to their ways.. i take that back we are already there…MARK MY WORD, A CHANGE IS ON THE HORIZON AND ITS NOT FOR THE BETTER.. WE’LL BE BOWING DOWN TO THE REPUBLICAN DICTATOR…

      1. Darrien says:

        Wrong … those things won’t be slashed … Same old same old democrat fear-mongering, and scare tactics .. Do you people ever have another play in the book? Yeah Turner has to be better than the idiot democrat dictator, we’ve been bowing down to, nationally … And couldn’t POSSIBLY be worse. Fail

      2. Stephan Lewis says:

        Funny how loosely the party that invented fear mongering and hatred throws those words around.

      3. Howie Sprague says:

        Lisa is correct. Folks need to open their eyes and acknowledge what clearly is happening in D.C.. The GOP is electing excessively wealthy CEO’s who’s mission is to continue corporate welfare, tax breaks and tax loopholes for the wealthiest 2% of Americans. Big corporations will continue to outsource jobs to other countries in order to pay pennies on the dollar in employee compensation. CEO compensation is at an all time high while middle class workers are taking pay & benefit cuts. The GOP is destroying the middle class in an effort to continue executive prosperity. We need to be represented by intelligent, members of the middle class who exhibit common sense & honesty.

      4. Philip Scharfy says:

        So the party of FDR now has nothing to offer…but fear itself.

      5. Philip Scharfy says:

        Socialists like Howie want you to forget that it was the Weinercrats and Obama that bailed out the liberal Wall Street fat cats and did NOTHING to curb exexutive compensation. Socialist like Howie want you to forget that DNC Chairman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz is MARRIED to a BANKER. He wants you to forget also that the Klintons offered up Chelsea in marriage to a WAAL STREET HEDGE FUND JACKAL. Socialists like Howie would also like you to overlook the fact that the President’s jiobs “plan” did not NOT call for repealing any of the job sucking treaties like NAFTA. Heck, those could have been repealed during Obama’s first two years when the Demonrats had absolute control. But NOOOOOO. The reality is that Nobama and the bosses of the Weinercrats are one worlder Socialists perfectly willing to sacrifice middle class jobs to destroy capitalism.

  7. Bill says:

    Wow, looks like even New York libs are tired of the failed policies of the Dems.

  8. Perry Mileo says:

    That dame Tea Party! Trying to stop this country from defaulting, the darn nerve!

    1. Barry says:

      no actually it was tea party darling bachman who wanted to default….

      1. Darrien says:

        No she didn’t

  9. Philip Scharfy says:

    The handwriting is on the wall for the Weinercrats and Nobama in 2012. His Fraudulency’s only hope is to energise the DNC’s socialist base and to do that they are going to have to dump Mean Joe Biden and run failed Secretary of state cHillary in the VP slot.

  10. Perry Mileo says:

    Oh please, the Republican won because of Ed Koch’s endorsement, due to the fact that Obama has hung Israel out to dry. We are real close to War in the Mideast thanks to our hapless President.

    1. barry says:

      yeah “real close” – you sound like a SMMMMMMMMART guy!!

  11. Aron Finkelston says:

    If you belief the nonsense in this report, then you are a fool. This is not a referendum on Obama, I live in the indistrict. This is Jews putting Isreal above America and punishing Weprin for supporting the so called mosque in Manhattan and Obama for saying the 1967 border should be the basis for compromise to resolve the Israeli-Palistinian conflict. It is sad that another tea-partier is going to Washington because a group that has more than its fair share of political power and patronage feels it deserves absolute determination of political policies.

    1. seenoland says:

      keep spinnin, baby. You are only fooling yourself

    2. Perry Mileo says:

      “It is sad that another tea-partier”

      Get used to it!

    3. Dr. Steven says:

      You are promoting a blood libel against the Jews- Elders of Zion sh!t. The old dual-loyalty canard. Well, as an orthodox Jew & a Viet Nam veteran I can say with a clear voice: go to h3ll!

  12. Wyoming Dave says:

    Just a thought to all Democrats, perhaps you need to rediscover your Conservative JFK wing of your party. My family and I were once Democrats but they kept moving farther and farther to the right and eventually they move completely away from me. I wish they would move back to the right. That constant push to the left was the cause of the Tea Party and it is made up of both Dems and Repubs like myself who are tired of both. The issue is that the Dems cast us as evil and bad people but we are the people and the Repubs had the good sence to let us in rather than demonize us. I hope and pray that the Dems move back to the center or they may cause thier own demise and I would hate to see that happen. I would love to reclaim the title of Democrat once again.

    1. Wyoming Dave says:

      Opps! It should have read, “moving farther and farther to the left”

    2. Larry says:

      Unfortunately, and sadly, the real democratic party has been hijacked by Progressive. The have a vision for the collective in the land, not the individual. Everything to them is for social justice and it should be for individual justice. And individual accomplishment. Even Hillary stood on stage with George Soros and claimed to be a modern progressive. They DO want to change America, because we have been so mean and cruel to the rest of the world. In other words, everything needs to be evened out,,which means your pay goes down, as the rest of the worlds pay goes up…the new world order and they rule.

  13. seenoland says:

    Take careful note Democrats, you can throw out your pointless spin, you can hide from the facts, you can not admit it to yourself it will do no good. Liberalism is through. You can run but you cannot hide. There is no district too blue, there is no rock you can slither under and no where you can hide, America is through with Liberalism and they are coming for you and 2012 is your end.

  14. Dorkyman says:

    Wow, what a stunning result.

    It will be fascinating to see the Dems furiously spinning the reasons.

    Prediction: Hillary resigns within 6 months, challenges Messiah in the primaries and wins.

    1. Eamonn says:

      More likely Obama pulls an LBJ and announces he won’t run again in order to “spend more time with my family” or some such. Avoids the fratricidal bloodbath that would suck up so much Democrat money and let B. Hussein “step down in a statesmanlike manner” rather than being warned to avoid the doorknob.

  15. Liberals suck says:

    FU liberals!!!!!!!hahhahahahhahah

  16. Robert says:

    Democrats are the only party that will blame Bush for local district disasters…. Go Turner!!!! Clueless Rats show up to vote twice, and voter their dog snoopy…. their relatives Popeye and sponge Bob! Cypress Hills is a disaster with 3 disaster candidates running…. Of which are Demorats…. Gonzalez, Towns, and Espinal…. Dave Weprin is a ‘weprin’ of mass destruction! Cypress Hills is such a disaster district the last time a Republican ran was back in the early 90’s. Thats how much this has transformed into the Ghetto it is today! We need real conservatives to fix this mess called NY once again!!!

  17. Eric Miller says:

    strange. down here in tennessee we consider the republicans as the stupid party and the democrats as the party of evil.

  18. Biff Roughneck says:

    @stoopball – the Crusades were a land grab BACK from the pillaging Muslims. Atheists and other anti-Christians love to use this ancient example — which really has no bearing on Christians today — to take a shot at Christianity. It really is tired, and when I read it on internet comment sections, I just assume the writer is a completely ignorant, uneducated shill for some misguided agenda.

    1. HeavyJ says:

      @biff, do you think the inhabitants of that region willingly joined the Byzantine Empire??? Just because the Romans took the land before the Muslims does not excuse the atrocities of the Crusades.

      1. Eamonn says:

        Spare us the whining about the Crusades. Muslims waged a bloody imperialist war of aggression against dozens of Christian nations in the Middle East, North Africa and Iberia long before the first Crusader stepped on a boat.

        Egypt, Libya, Morocco were all Christian before the Muslims invaded and imposed Islam by the sword.

        Syria was Christian.

        Persia was Zoroastrian.

        Afghanistan was Buddhist.

        The constant whining about the Crusades is simply Muslim propaganda, pathetic attempts to portray themselves as the victims rather than the genocidal religious-fanatic AGGRESSORS who wiped out entire cultures.

  19. Chris says:

    Turner is winning this handily. Almost none of the Brooklyn part of the district is in (where Turner’s winning 70%) and a lot of Queens is in, and they are 50/50 in Queens! If Turner runs even in Queens, he’s going to win this in a blowout.

  20. ONJ says:

    Wow, what a far flung conversation for a fairly local race. Because they have each identified themselves as a republican and a democrat respectively, that makes them both unfit for office. The D’s are feckless wussies The R’s are the embodiment of pure evil. In this context, evil will triumph and the country will lose. I never heard a D talk about a ‘permanent majority’ like Rove did. He meant it.
    History is littered with failed ‘permanent majorities’ (dictatorships).
    Party on Tea Guys. Keep drinking that Koch Bros Kool Aid. Your grandchildren will all be thankful for their daily ration of rice.

    1. Truth Hurts says:

      Daily ration of rice?
      You did see the numbers today that shows that more Americans are at or below the poverty level since 1983 right? Grandchildren? How about US!!! Thanks to Obama’s policies of spend, spend, spend we are further in a deficit hole than ever with nothing to show for it.
      Kool Aid? Only Kool Aid drinker I am seeing around here is you. Keep drinking that D Kool Aid. It seems to be working so well for NYC. The Democratic machine in this city has been running things for decades and we are worse off now than ever.

    2. Habs says:

      you mean the food stamp programs that the Dems so heavily support? Please get a clue before you spew that excriment…

  21. speedylarry says:

    I live in the 9th district and could not vote. I went to the polling place where I always go to vote in Glen Oaks. It was closed, there was no information on where I could go to vote.

    1. Eamonn says:

      You probably would have left a hanging chad for Buchanan anyway.

  22. Jerry from Texas says:

    The polls closed almost an hour ago and there’s no early returns to report? The demos must be stuffing the ballot boxes at the last minute!

    1. FREDDIE DAKAR says:

      The initial results indicate a Turner win so the liberal media are holding their reports until a few thousand absentee ballots can be furiously filled in and “found”

  23. Eugene Boyanton says:

    New Yorkers deserve what ever they give themselves. Lemmings all as they stampede off the cliff.

  24. River2 says:

    It is interesting how all the facts get twisted to suit one’s opinion. Deeds have demonstrated extreme hatred from muslims against US and Israel. Those DEEDS have to be repudiated by the “peaceloving” muslims. Incidentally, in a nearby community in Queens, in an ongoing minisurvey,not one muslim would admit that it was their own that destroyed the Twin Towers.
    It was Israel, it was the CIA, it was a cult, but never, never, was it who it really was. Then we need to not indict the whole? Only when they truly integrate into this country.

  25. Melissa1125 says:

    New Yorkers are not idiots. People who use a screen name “NYersRIdiots” are trolls.

  26. NYersRIdiots says:

    WAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!! I’m a dopey liberal who wants to pay more taxes!!!! Waaaahhhhhhh!!!! I love unions and legacy payments!!!!!!!! I would have voted for Weiner again because I have no problem with a married man sending pics of his parts to women. On my dime!!!!!!! Waaaahhhhhhhh! I make fun of the Tea Party and have no idea what they stand for!!!!!!! I have the worst run state government in the country and continue to vote democrat!!!! Waaaahhhh!

    1. Freddie Dakar says:

      You should have stopped after smart liberal. Everything you said after that disproved the smart part.

    2. Jim says:

      Your quote: “Unions aren’t perfect, but they provide workers a way to deal on an even level with powerful corporations.” Explain how this covers government worker unions… Face it, unions are people getting together to set prices for a good (in this case labor). When a corporate does this we call it anti-competitive.. and impose fines. If you think the leaders of New York want to help people you are fantastically naive. Politicians in New York want to stay in power, enhance their careers, move up and in a surprising number of cases, use their positions to line their own pockets.

    3. Larry says:

      Well as long as someone else pays right…dont look now, but you are so far left Im surprised that you will ever get anything right again. Have you ever worked for a poor person?

  27. Dblock says:

    If you live in the 9th district and you don’t get out there to vote and this tea party idiot wins don’t start crying later.. GET OUT TO THE POLLS AND VOTE FOR WEPRIN!!!!

    1. tom123 says:

      I’m going to go tot he polls and I’m going to vote REPUBLICAN!

  28. GO WEPRIN GO ! says:

    Turner is a Tea Bag Whacko…I voted for David WEPRIN !!

  29. George Scott says:

    Weprin claims huge union support. Unions are the cause of our financial state.
    This communist in Washington who bows down to muslim leaders also claims huge union support. Can’t people see that unions are killing our country ??
    TURNER is anti-establishment and must be elected……

    1. River2 says:

      Unions are long gone. Killing this country are the corporations who siphon off all the money and power.

    2. Jewfromhell says:

      You got that right!

  30. DemsThinkURStupid says:

    If you vote Dem on this one , you’re an idiot…And that’s what the Democratic party is counting on……

  31. truth says:

    what happened to little weiner? i guess the media stopped informing the citizens of his whereabouts, his finances, etc.

  32. omar says:

    “Nor for the life of me can I figure out what benefit there is to the United States to have a Palestinian state. Why would America want to create another terrorist state?” Giuliani said.

    When a politician speaks like this, how can we move forward as a nation. Is he saying that all muslims are terrorist. I seem to remember a few months ago, when that christian individual attacked all those children in europe, no one has said anything regarding the christian ideals.

    I really hope the constituents of NYC, take the time to think for themselves and not wait until the situation becomes worst before they do so.

    This guy dresses up in drag and has an affair yet deemed Time’s man of the year worthy? All hell breaks loose when a weiner sends a picture.

    CBS your very biased, I like how you portray democrats in a negative light.

    1. IgnoranteElephante says:

      He may have dressed in drag and have had an affair, but, at least, he is not a member of a hate spewing religion that oppresses women and detests freedom and liberty to the point that it views democracy as a threat to its tenets. No one is saying all Muslims are terrorists, just that a significant portion of the Arab and Persian Muslims seem to support terrorism as a legitimate form of protest and that Muslim nations have yet to come out and publicly condone terrorism. That’s all.

      In response to the perceived replies that I am a bigot, I quote the great orator, John Adams, “Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.”

      1. SuperLaw says:

        Unfortunately, you fail to provide any facts, just your opinion. You are entitled to it, but that does not make it true. How about some facts about whether the existence of a Palestinian state would or would not address the quality of life of its citizena and remove an excuse for terrorizing Israel.

    2. Lianto Suhardi says:

      Since when CBS is biased against Democrat? Everybody knows it but you. Second, read this Norwegian man manifesto, it will surely shows how he is not a Christian, since there is no instruction to commit murder in Christianity. This only show how ignorant you are.

      1. stoopball says:

        Lianto – There is no instruction to commit murder in Islam, as there is none in Christianity (would the crusades qualify as condonation to commit murder – is not war justification to commit murder?).

        And to Ignorante – facts according to whom? and stating that Muslims “seem” to support terrorism ? Is that like the Pope seems to have supported christain terrorism (uhh – crusades)? I would advise trusting those who profess to interpret religion and “facts” as presented by the news.

    3. Philip Scharfy says:

      The above from omar is your brain on drugs

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