Betrayed By Ambition: Don Guillo Was Left Without The Rope and The Goat

By Senator Rev. Ruben Diaz

“Don Guillo” Was Left Without the Rope and the Goat

You should know that in the Barrio La Cuchilla Hato Tejas Bayamon, Puerto Rico where I was born, there was a saying about a person whose ambition let him reach out so far that he would not only miss getting what he was going after, but in that process, he would lose everything he already had. We say, “Se quedó sin la soga y sin la cabra” which means: “He was left without the rope and without the goat.”

Apparently, this is the case of Assemblyman Guillermo Linares, who, while he was running for US Congress this past June, appeared to be working to prevent Senator Adriano Espaillat from being the first Dominican elected to Congress. Senator Espaillat had the support of the Dominican Community. He was the people’s choice, and had already run for this Congressional seat.

Guillermo Linares knew that the people preferred Senator Adriano Espaillat. Guillermo Linares knew he was the Dominican leadership supported Espaillat. Guillermo Linares knew that if he ran, he would split Dominican and the Hispanic vote, and the chances of a Dominican getting the elected would be minimized.

You should know that on two separate occasions in Albany, I personally met with Assemblyman Guillermo Linares to explain to him why he should not run for Congress, and why he should publicly endorse Senator Espaillat.

I explained to “Don Guillo” that he should consider everything.

For example, I suggested that he might want to show his public support for Espaillat, and then, if Espaillat won, he might give his support to Linares for the Senate seat that would be vacant.

I also suggested the possibility of how Espaillat might turn to him to recommend a person of his liking to fill the vacancy in the Assembly, if he won the Senate seat.

My dear reader, could you imagine if Linares would have joined Espaillat? The Dominican community would look at him as someone who made a sacrifice to throw his personal ambitions aside in favor of joining the Dominican community and electing Espaillat as the first Dominican to serve in the United States Congress.

You should know that if Guillermo Linares would have done this, Adriano Espaillat would have to had felt morally obliged to support Linares. The Dominican community would have been greatly united, giving Espaillat an even greater victory that he got in June. Instead, Linares listened to the advice of others and thought that he would win primary for US Congress, even when the Dominican leaders and community were not with him.

You should know that I was not the only one who advised Linares.

One afternoon while I was watching an interview by Mr. Ramon Anibal from Television Dominicana, I saw him advise Linares not to run against Espaillat because it would seem divisive.

I could see how very angry Guillermo Linares was as he stepped away from the microphone that Mr. Ramon Anibal held, and I also observed the expression on the face of Ramon Anibal.

You should know that Ramon Anibal and I were probably not the only ones to advise Linares not to run against Espaillat, but many other people and community leaders must have done so as well.

In this past Primary, Adriano Espaillat threw his support for a women, Carmen De La Rosa to run for Assembly against Guillermo Linares. De la Rosa won, costing Linares not only his dream of being elected to Congress, but his seat in the Assembly. He was rejected by the Dominican community of Upper Manhattan.

What will the future of Guillermo Linares be? Who knows? After November’s General Election, Adriano Espaillat will be a Member of the United States Congress and two women Espaillat supported in the Primary will serve as elected officials in the New York State Legislature. Marisol Alcantara will occupy the seat Espaillat vacated in the Senate, and Carmen de la Rosa will take over the seat Linares once held seat in the Assembly.

Ladies and gentlemen, I can only think of the old expression: “He who does not listen to advice does not get old” and this is how we can see that “Don Guillo se quedó sin la soga y sin la cabra” – he was left without the rope and the goat.

I am Senator Rev. Ruben Diaz and this is what you should know.

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