Councilman Dan Halloran, the Republican councilman who will face off against Democratic Assemblyman Grace Meng in November to represent Queens’ 6th District in the House released a new campaign video on YouTube this morning blasting President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform law.
“When ObamaCare was passed in 2009, we were lied to. This new tax is the biggest in our country’s history, and it doesn’t take on the real problems of the health care industry,” Mr. Halloran says in the clip.
After some delay, Councilman Dan Halloran, the Republican candidate for a northeastern Queens Congressional District, finally posted his latest fundraising report showing the amount of campaign cash raised through the 6th of this month, and the number wasn’t exactly overwhelming. In just 7 contributions, Mr. Halloran raised a bit under $10,000.
In the packed Plum Restaurant in the Bayside neighborhood of Queens, Assemblywoman Grace Meng entered the room to the Black Eye Peas’ “Let’s get it started in here” (Let’s get into it! Yeah! Get stupid! Come on!) just after ten o’clock and was simply a rock star. Ms. Meng is beloved in Queens Democratic circles and those circles certainly turned out for her clamorous and joyous victory party. Declaring her congressional campaign’s success before the Associated Press did, she spent most of her speech thanking all of her volunteers, family members, supporters, opponents, and probably a few others tossed in there as well.
“It has been about we, certainly not me,” Ms. Meng said to begin her speech. “We. We, in this room. We in the neighborhoods won this important race. We won this victory together.”
And win the race she did, surprising expectations and securing an outright majority of the vote, a tough act considering her multiple credible primary opponents with strong labor support and electoral bases. And while Ms. Meng received very strong support in her own base in Flushing’s sizable Asian community, supporters and elected officials also constantly pointed to her impressively strong performance in other areas as well, a tribute to the forces that mobilized behind her candidacy.
winners & losers
After much tension and circumstance, today’s primary elections for federal elections have come to a close, and there were few surprises to be found.
In each congressional race, the candidate of the conventional wisdom emerged victorious and all incumbents that sought to return to Washington D.C. next year are now set to do so — at least in parts of heavily Democratic New York City where primary elections are the actual contest.
The list of primary champions includes Reps. Charlie Rangel, Nydia Velázquez and Yvette Clarke, with open seat contenders Hakeem Jeffries and Grace Meng added in as well.
With the sun setting and almost every voter having cast their ballots, Assemblywoman Grace Meng chose to make her final push in the Bayside neighborhood of Queens, blocks from the location of her her victory party.
“Everybody and their brother is here,” as Assemblyman David Weprin put it when Councilman Mark Weprin strolled up.
Of course, there weren’t too many voters left to persuade, so the group of elected officials were mostly focused on bantering with one another and musing on turnout as the the 9 p.m. poll closing time approached.
After Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a small slew of late congressional endorsements last Friday, it turned out that there was one final endorsement for him to give.
“Hello this is Governor Andrew Cuomo, I’m calling to urge you to vote for my friend Grace Meng for Congress in tomorrow’s Democratic primary,” Mr. Cuomo said in a robocall released by Assemblywoman Grace Meng’s campaign earlier this evening.
Due to a loophole in this year’s uniquely layered election calendar, it’s possible for members of the State Legislature to simultaneously run for Congress and for reelection in Albany, providing a potential escape hatch should they lose their congressional bid. There is some controversy as to whether State Senator Adriano Espaillat is doing this or not, but Assemblywoman Grace Meng made clear during a congressional debate last night that she’s currently all-in for Washington D.C.
“I am not circulating petitions to run for reelection as an assembly member and right now I am 100% focused on winning the congressional race,” Ms. Meng stated.
Doctor In The House
Dr. Robert Mittman, the controversial underdog Queens congressional candidate, released a campaign video on YouTube yesterday. So far, only 13 people have watched the clip, which includes footage of Dr. Mittman reading the statement he made when he first announced his campaign interspersed with photos of him and his family, the good doctor at work treating patients and pictures of New York and Washington landmarks all set to the tune of Billy Joel’s 1989 hit “We Didn’t Start The Fire.”
“As a lifelong Queens resident, a parent, a voter and a medical doctor, I am here to offer a precsription for a healthy economy,” Dr. Mittman says in the video.
Assembly Members Grace Meng and Rory Lancman, both candidates for an open congressional seat in northeastern Queens, have been taking shots at one another on issues ranging from Social Security to The New York Times endorsement, but the third main candidate in the race, Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley, has largely been keeping her head down. That changed this morning when her campaign released a video accusing Mr. Lancman of being hypocritical on the issue of independent redistricting.
“Assemblyman Lancman is very eager to attack his opponents, but seems to have forgotten to mind his own backyard,” a high ranking official in Ms. Crowley’s campaign declared. “If he tells a crowd of voters that he supports independent redistricting and always has, but told NY1 four months ago that he had a hand in drawing his own lines, it is a case of pandering at best and lying at worst.”
social security skirmish
Things are heating up over in New York’s 6th Congressional District.
Assemblyman Rory Lancman started things off by criticizing his two rivals for the Democratic nomination, Assemblyman Grace Meng and Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley, over their Social Security positions. His campaign mailer hitting households in the district focused on Ms. Meng in particular, accusing her of supporting slashed benefits.
Well, it seems that Ms. Meng’s campaign has had enough of that, and they put out a long statement entitled, “Rory Lancman’s Honesty Problem.”