There’s a very Washington-esque battle brewing in Western New York. Remember when Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell pledged to try and keep Barack Obama from a second term in office?

Well, Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz, D, believes something similar is happening to him, albeit on a smaller scale. Over the past several months, the relationship between Poloncarz and the Republican-led county legislature has apparently deteriorated to the point where he said it’s refusing pretty much any new legislation he proposes.

“I’ve been told by a good Republican source, another elected official who’s a Republican that I know very well, that (Erie County GOP Chairman) Nick Langworthy sent out the message, ‘Stop everything that Poloncarz’s administration is doing. Try to make them look bad,” he said.

There’s no keeping the county executive to one term though. He easily won his second election last fall and has most of his four-year term still ahead of him.

“It has nothing to do with the county executive race because I won the county executive race by more than thirty points. It has everything to do, as I’ve been told, because they think Mark Poloncarz is going to have a future in New York state politics or national politics so you’ve got to make him look bad,” he said.

Langworthy scoffed at the idea. He said Poloncarz is the only person who thinks Poloncarz is a future player on the state and national scene.

“I just find it laughable,” Langworthy said. “He’s not even the signature Democrat in Erie County, let alone across the state. He’s maybe third banana behind (Congressman) Brian Higgins and even Mayor (Byron) Brown was named the chairman of the state Democratic Party.”

The chairman said he never sent out any anti-Poloncarz directive to his committee members. He said the Republican legislators who have rejected the county executive’s proposals are elected independently and are representing their constituents.

“This isn’t the Party of No. This is the Party of That Costs Too Much. That’s the Party of That’s A Wrong Idea. The county legislature puts ideas forward of their own all the time. The executive does not just get to run roughshod on the legislature.”

If that’s the case, Poloncarz questioned why the legislature hasn’t passed what he believes are well-supported measures, like extra security for the county office building, ethics reform and a proposal to curb lead poisoning.

UPDATE: Legislative majority Chief of Staff Steven Whipple said the legislature is acting and has acted on ethics reform but Poloncarz’s proposal is inadequate. He also said the legislature passed a bill to reduce lead poisoning months ago.

“Bad ideas are bad ideas. Executive Poloncarz has had many of them lately. It’s nothing bigger than that,” Whipple said.