At a birthday fundraiser last night in East Harlem, friends and supporters gathered to toast City Councilwoman Melissa Mark-Viverito’s re-election bid for a redrawn district. But for the two-term progressive rabble-rouser, there is far more at stake than keeping her seat.
“We want to see her Speaker!” shouted one supporter as the group crowded around Ms. Viverito at the cozy El Kallejon on East 117th Street to hear her remarks.
As expected, Councilman Dan Garodnick, who had been firmly campaigning for comptroller until today, formally dropped out of the race and endorsed Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer for the position. Mr. Stringer, of course, had previously been campaigning for mayor until he dropped down to the comptroller’s race himself.
“When I announced my candidacy for NYC Comptroller, I promised that New Yorkers wouldn’t get any drama with me,” Mr. Garodnick wrote in an email to his supporters.
Councilman Dan Garodnick’s advisors insisted he was confident about his campaign to be City comptroller after Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer entered the race earlier this month. However, according to a report in Capital New York, which was subsequently echoed by several other outlets, Mr. Garodnick has decided to end his comptroller campaign and focus on getting re-elected to his Council seat.
The Race is On
When Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer announced his intention to run for City Comptroller this evening it may have made things easier for the 2013 mayoral candidates, but it created a tough race for another Democrat who is running for comptroller–Councilman Dan Garodnick. However, Mr. Garodnick’s campaign spokesman Dan Levitan released a statement saying Mr. Garodnick is ready for the fight.
“Dan Garodnick said when he announced his campaign for NYC comptroller that he was a candidate – regardless of the field. Nothing has happened to change that,” Mr. Levitan said. “Dan didn’t choose to run for comptroller because he thought it would be the easiest race. He chose to run for comptroller because it was the job that best suited his talents and experience–fluent with the city’s finances, trained at internal investigations and with the record of integrity the office needs.”
After months of rumors, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer has officially decided to run for City Comptroller next year. He was previously considering a campaign for mayor, but he said his experience exploring that race convinced him to run for the city’s top financial office. Mr. Stringer spoke to Politicker about his decision earlier today and said he will formally launch his campaign in three weeks. Rather than an avoidance of the crowded mayor’s race, Mr. Stringer characterized his entry into the comptroller race as a move to confront the most crucial issues currently facing the city.
“What’s needed right now is an experienced hand who can partner with the mayor when it’s in the best interests of the city, but also someone with the independence and backbone to stand up to special interests, to call out wasteful spending and to safeguard the city’s pension funds,” said Mr. Stringer. “That is what I’ve done my entire career and that’s what im going to as comptroller, so I’m not dropping down, I’m stepping up.”
Dara Adams, currently Community Affairs Director at the Department of Education, is set to leave her job Friday in order to directly pursue a campaign for Councilman Dan Garodnick’s East Side seat. Mr. Garodnick declared he will run for New York City Comptroller in 2013, which led Ms. Adams to publicly contemplate a campaign months ago, but she had not officially announced her intentions.
“I still have to register all of my paperwork with the Board of Elections,” she told us earlier this afternoon. “But I am leaving to finish my master’s and run for City Council.”
Jeff Mailman, an attorney and legislative director for the City Council, is considering a campaign for Councilman Dan Garodnick’s East Side district. Mr. Garodnick has already announced his intentions to run citywide for comptroller in 2013 and multiple contenders are already lining up their campaigns to replace him.
“My time as the legislative director for Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley was a thrilling experience,” Mr. Mailman told us yesterday evening, ticking off a range of issues he’s interested in, especially zoning policy. “The Council is an exciting place.”
In yet one more sign of the political winds shifting against stop-and-frisk, another candidate for citywide office has come out against the current practices of the NYPD tactic today. East Side Councilman Dan Garodnick, a top contender for Comptroller John Liu’s job in 2013, penned a letter to Police Commissioner Ray Kelly asking him to “firmly commit to revisiting this practice, reducing the overall number and disproportionate application of stops made each year and ensuring that stops are based on individualized reasonable suspicion.”
Mark Thompson, the chair of Community Board 6, has officially registered a campaign committee for Councilman Dan Garodnick’s East Side seat. Mr. Garodnick recently announced his campaign for New York City Comptroller, which will leave a vacant seat behind him for aspiring city councilmen like Mr. Thompson.
The move comes as little surprise as Mr. Thompson had already told DNAinfo, “I’m very seriously considering running for Dan’s seat,” and, “ I hope to make an announcement some time soon.”
New York City Comptroller John Liu, a possible candidate for mayor next year who has seen multiple federal indictments against his campaign operations, knows exactly what office he’s going to seek next year, but he’s just not ready to say it yet.
“I know what I’m going to do next year,” he precisely said while being interviewed on Inside City Hall last night.
When asked about Councilman Dan Garodnick’s recently announced campaign for comptroller, Mr. Liu continued to vaguely suggest he’s indeed running for mayor.