Top of the ballot

Rep. Eric Massa (D-N.Y.) has an hour-long bully pulpit this evening on Glenn Beck’s show, in which the host will be only so happy to allow him to tear into the Democratic leadership. What’s interesting here is that Massa has often opposed the Democratic leadership from the left, while Beck is coming from the right. It’s an enemy-of-my-enemy situation, but it’s easy to see the two of them playing off each other. In fact, the man Massa pegged to replace him in the House, Hornell Mayor Shawn Hogan (D), even compared Massa to Beck yesterday. He told the New York Daily News, “Now he has more conspiracy theories than Glenn Beck does. I think he has just gone over the edge.” Massa does have a tendency to speak in platitudes and to be a little, as Rahm Emanuel frequently reminded him, angry. But it’s hard to think what could better play into his appearance on Fox News tonight. And after that, he will be on Larry King too.

The Hoff returns

As expected, Doug Hoffman will run again in New York’s 23rd congressional district. Hoffman officially launched his campaign Monday, but he has been preparing a bid since the day after his loss to now-Rep. Bill Owens (D-N.Y.) in November. Republicans in Washington think Hoffman has earned another shot at the seat, but it’s got to be somewhat worrying that he still refuses to rule out a third-party bid if he loses the GOP primary. It’s an interesting power play. Basically, Hoffman is saying, ‘I will be on the ballot anyways, so you might as well give me your nomination.’ But the thing is, he would be the favorite regardless, so does he need to risk irritating the GOP? And while this may be a convincing argument to party leaders, it probably means nothing to most primary voters.

More from New York, because we can

Republicans may have lost a well-funded candidate in the race to face Rep. Dan Maffei (D-N.Y.), with businessman Mark Bitz suspending his campaign after he missed out on the Conservative and Republican designations in the district. He might still run in the primary, but suspending your campaign is never a good sign. And even if he does run in the primary, he will be giving up a few months of fundraising time. The Conservative and Republican parties in four counties recently backed Syracuse common councilor Ann Marie Buerkle over Bitz. Bitz is willing to wait as long as June to judge whether to jump back in the race. At that point, though, he’ll probably have to self-fund heavily in order to put together the kind of money he needs to bear Maffei.