Taking on Tony
Through the Liu-king Glass
State Senator Tony Avella’s decision to join the Independent Democratic Conference is irking ex-Comptroller John Liu and Congresswoman Grace Meng.
Mr. Liu and Ms. Meng–who like Mr. Avella, are Democrats hailing from northeast Queens–criticized Mr. Avella when asked about about his recent move to join the breakaway conference Democrats governing the State Senate with the Republican Party.
New York Quits
John Liu still won’t rule out another try for elected office.
The ex-comptroller and mayoral candidate refused to swat down rumors that he is mulling a bid against Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez, even as he put another batch of rumors to rest by endorsing his own congresswoman, Grace Meng, for re-election.
So This Happened
Smoking is out at City Hall.
City politicians took to Twitter today to applaud CVS’s announcement that its stores will no longer sell tobacco after Oct. 1.
“Thanks to @CVS_Extra for taking bold action to improve public health & make vision of a #tobaccofree generation one step closer to reality,” wrote Comptroller Scott Stinger, a longtime anti-smoking activist.
Mr. Liu Goes to Washington?
This particular beef may finally be over.
Elected officials and Korean-American community leaders gathered today in Flushing, Queens to declare a resolution had been brokered in an escalating battle between local seniors and a McDonald’s. Or, in the words of Assemblyman Ron Kim’s press release: “McResolution!“
Crimes Against Congress
Could John Liu be running for Congress?
The indefatigable ex-comptroller, who ran an unsuccessful bid for mayor, has been the subject of still-undefined rumors that he’s contemplating a primary bid against Queens Congresswoman Grace Meng, a fellow Democrat.
Pressed with repeated phone calls, texts and direct questions asked of his spokesperson through email, Mr. Liu wouldn’t deny his interest.
Fun With Numbers
Queens Congresswoman Grace Meng was attacked Tuesday night in Washington D.C., her office announced today.
Ms. Meng was hit over her head and robbed of her Gucci handbag, but did not suffer serious injures, according to the account; she was left with a bruise on her chin and underwent a CAT scan at George Washington University Hospital.
Mayoral front-runner Bill de Blasio today accused his Republican opponent, Joe Lhota, of putting forward a “fiscally irresponsible” plan that would cost the city billions in tax breaks.
Speaking to reporters at a Queens endorsement event, Mr. de Blasio–who is far ahead in the polls–said that Mr. Lhota’s economic plan would bring big benefits to the city’s wealthiest.
It’s not just conservatives who are critiquing Sen. Chuck Schumer and the rest of the so-called “Gang of Eight” for their immigration bill.
Freshman Congresswoman Grace Meng, a steady liberal hand, is also urging to re-assess the latest version of the proposed federal immigration overhaul. But her warnings come with a unique twist: potential damage to Asian-American immigrant families.
In her first such letter to lawmakers on a major piece of legislation, Ms. Meng, New York’s first Asian-American Congresswoman, told Mr. Schumer, New York’s most politically powerful voice in Washington, that she has concerns about certain provisions of the sweeping reform bill, which is set to be taken up by the Senate Judiciary Committee this week.
Queens Democrat Grace Meng became the first Asian-American from New York to be elected to Congress when she defeated Republican Councilman Dan Halloran on Tuesday, but after her victory, she focused on her status as a female elected official rather than her background. In a speech before a room full of supporters and local officials at the Sheraton LaGuardia East last night, Ms. Meng emphasized the importance of electing women to government office and voiced her support for the middle class rather than trumpeting her win as a watershed moment for Asian-Americans.
“Tonight is historic in that we’ve taken one small step in getting more women elected to government,” Ms. Meng said as she addressed the room. ”More women in government means practical attention on how families educate their children, how they pay their bills, how they worship, how they participate in their community, and how they plan for the future.“
New York State started off as a key battleground in the Democrats’ battle to retake control of the U.S. House, especially after the courts intervened in the redistricting plan and shook up a lot of traditional boundaries. However, most of these races were focused in areas further Upstate and the suburbs, leaving the heavily Democratic New York City with just two congressional elections of note.
In Queens, Democratic Assemblywoman Grace Meng faced off against GOP Councilman Dan Halloran for a seat crafted from the district remnants of outgoing Congressmen Bob Turner and Gary Ackerman. Despite Mr. Halloran’s polling showing the race a tie, those numbers did not pan out and Ms. Meng is currently ahead by roughly 2-to-1, which matches how Democrats have historically performed within the area.