No matter how Freddy Ferrer does in November, matched as he is against a wealthy and popular incumbent, the city's Democrats scored a win last week, one that has eluded them for more than a decade. Ever since Rudy Giuliani captured City Hall in 1993 by picking off a crucial slice of disaffected white Democratic voters, the Party of the People has been looking for an answer to its ills. It floundered in 1997 when many leaders bolted from nominee Ruth Messinger. It self-destructed in 2001 when a tough runoff campaign collapsed into hostile ethnic warfare. It meandered through the post–9-11 years, feckless and unable to capitalize on a Republican mayor who called for lavish stadiums at the expense of mass transit, who held political fundraisers at his East Side townhouse for allies of... More >>>