Long Island Rumble
pulling out the pink
Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice today netted the first major union endorsement in the race for retiring Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy’s seat.
The Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union is backing Ms. Rice, a Democrat, for the seat Ms. McCarthy is vacating at the end of the year, Politicker has learned. Ms. McCarthy is retiring after revealing that she is battling lung cancer.
Standing alongside her rivals at the first broadcast debate of the mayor’s race, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, the contest’s former front-runner, seemed like a candy-coated version of herself.
Suited up to stand out in a bright pink dress and powder-pink jacket, the famously brash Ms. Quinn spoke slowly and softly, her head cocked slightly to the side, seemingly coached to dig into her opponents and deliver repeated talking points with a frozen smile.
“Quinn trapped in consultant Saran Wrap,” remarked one noted columnist of the wooden performance. One stunned Democratic operative described “a Stepford wife version of Chris Quinn.” A writer, pegging Ms. Quinn “the grinning assassin,” suggested she was “smiling and speaking slowly, as if trying not to alarm the audience.”
In an interview with Politicker after the forum, Ms. Quinn ascribed the observations to nerves ahead of the biggest primary debate yet.
New York Congressman Steve Israel, who heads up the House Democrats’ campaign efforts, made an interesting pitch to NY1′s Errol Louis on Inside City Hall last Friday. He argued the most New York is now in play with the judge’s new congressional redistricting plan.
“Right in New York, as a result of the map the courts have approved, we have races all over the state that will be competitive,” he said, before ticking down a laundry list of newly competitive seats.
Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice brought in over $900,000 in contributions this cycle, with an additional $350,000 in other receipts transferred from a now-closed account, according to filings reported to the Board of Elections today. Her report is especially notable as it represents more than a ten-fold increase in her cash on hand over her committee’s last filing, suggesting that she might possibly have her eyes on a higher office.
“She takes her job and her public service seriously so she’s always going to work hard at building a political network to keep her in a position to continue the important work she’s doing,” a spokesman for Ms. Rice said, hinting that she could have higher ambitions for the future. “While she loves her job, her success at building that network will always give her a lot of options.”
The number represents a huge haul for a down-ballot suburban lawmaker, especially considering that Ms. Rice lost the Attorney General’s race to Eric Schneiderman in 2010. The figure announced today even outpaces Read More
Kathleen Rice, the Nassau County District Attorney who ran as a tough, law-and-order attorney general candidate last year, is warning clerks they could face “criminal prosecution” if they refuse marriage licenses to same-sex couples after July 24.
In a letter to clerks today, Rice said the religious protections within the same-sex marriage legislation are “inapplicable to town and city clerks” and refusal to serve gay couples “may constitute Official Misconduct.”
Letter after the jump.
When Republican State Senator Jim Alesi was introduced at the Human Rights Campaign party Tuesday night, celebrating last week’s passage of same-sex marriage, the audience exploded with cheers and applause.
“That’s exactly what it sounded like when I went to church on Sunday,” he said. The audience burst into laughter.