The days after the mayor releases his preliminary budget are usually filled with protests by advocates stomping their feet, decrying cuts to favored programs on the steps of City Hall.
But today, the labor groups, workers, and council members rallying outside City Hall were there to hail Mayor Bill de Blasio’s call during his State of the City speech for an increase in the minimum wage.
As the City Council’s growing Progressive Caucus sways the council speaker’s race, insiders are questioning whether their sizable bloc of Queens members will remain loyal to the caucus–or be picked off by their county leaders.
Members of the caucus have pledged to remain unified as they try to crown the city’s second-most powerful leader, even though they have yet to decide which candidate to support. But some wonder whether Queens Democrats–whose bloc vote has made them the most influential force in past speaker’s races–may stand in the way.
Joining the Fray
Over the weekend, the influential Working Families Party announced their support in a number of key races across the city, sending a signal of labor support as candidates vie for a seat in the City Council next year.
“New Yorkers have a huge opportunity to decide the direction of our city. It’s time to choose whether we’ll be a city that caters to the rich and powerful 1%, or whether New York City can work for all of us,” Bill Lipton, the party’s deputy director, said in a statement. “Every day New Yorkers can count on WFP-endorsed candidates to stand up for all of us.”
Manny Caughman, a staffer for Queens Assemblyman William Scarborough, told Politicker he’s ‘99 percent’ certain he’ll launch a bid for term-limited Councilman Leroy Comrie’s seat. And, thanks to his civic work and ties to the influential Guy R. Brewer Democratic Club in southeastern Queens, Mr. Caughman could mount a serious challenge to labor leader Daneek Miller, the race’s early front-runner.
Though the field for term-limited Queens Councilman Leroy Comrie’s seat is far from set, it may soon have a frontrunner: labor leader Daneek Miller.
Indeed, Mr. Miller, the president of Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1056, told Politicker that Mr. Comrie asked him to run for the City Council this year. Although he stressed he had not formally decided whether to launch his bid, Mr. Miller said he was seriously considering the opportunity.