Photo: Sandra Roper (left) and John Kennedy O'Hara, candidates for Civil Court judgeships in Brooklyn. They are running against the powers-that-be.
Why are John O'Hara and Sandra Roper the most meaningful characters in this political cycle? Because they were victims of an old boss system, in which former Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes used his power to rip them from the political ring and threaten them with jail time. Hard to imagine something like that could have happened in modern America. But it did.
Watch and listen to this interview. I did it with John O'Hara four years ago, when Hynes faced the first serious challenge to his long, abusive reign of power. Yes, Hynes lost. And it was truly a significant moment in the history of U.S. prosecutors, because prosecutors (District Attorneys) hardly ever get kicked out of office. Here, in six smooth minutes, O'Hara lays out the scenario of power abuse that kept Hynes in office. It was a scenario that ended with the eventual victory of (now the late) Kenneth Thompson.
If voters say so on Tuesday (the Democratic primary) O'Hara and Roper may have the last laugh, as they walk toward the closets keeping judicial robes. (Under the video image is the link to a Brooklyn Eagle article about the judicial races.)