Tish James Downplays Historic Nature of Her Campaign on Voting Day

Tish James greets voters in Jamaica, Queens today.
Tish James greets voters in Jamaica, Queens today.

At one of her final campaign stops of the public advocate’s race, Councilwoman Tish James repeatedly downplayed the historical nature of her candidacy.

If Ms. James triumphs in the runoff today, she will become the first black woman elected to citywide office. Throughout her campaign her supporters have both celebrated that fact and noted that her opponent, State Senator Daniel Squadron, would be the third white male on the Democrats’s citywide ticket if he wins. But Ms. James insisted this afternoon that history was not on her mind. Continue reading “Tish James Downplays Historic Nature of Her Campaign on Voting Day”

Runoff Voters Begin Casting Ballots in Empty Auditoriums

The empty JHS 190 in Forest Hills this morning. (Photo: Russell Schaffer/@RussOnPoliticis)
The empty JHS 190 in Forest Hills this morning. (Photo: Russell Schaffer/@RussOnPolitics)

Today’s runoff election is expected to draw a dismal turnout with as few as 100,000 of the city’s registered Democrats casting their ballots in the public advocate’s race between State Senator Daniel Squadron and Councilwoman Letitia James.

And that fact was clear this morning as voters began heading to the polls. Instead of the long lines and broken machines that have marred recent election days, voters instead reported lonely, near-empty auditoriums where only a handful of ballots had been cast.

Continue reading “Runoff Voters Begin Casting Ballots in Empty Auditoriums”

Tish James and Daniel Squadron Bank Runoff Endorsements

Tish James and Bill de Blasio. (Photo: Getty)
Tish James and Bill de Blasio. (Photo: Getty)

Public Advocate Bill de Blasio has ducked a potentially divisive primary runoff in the mayor’s race, but the candidates vying to replace him have no such luck.

As their one-on-one face-off heats up, Councilwoman Tish James and State Senator Daniel Squadron are racking up endorsements as they work to secure enough support to reach the 50 percent they’ll need when voters head back to the polls on October 1.

Continue reading “Tish James and Daniel Squadron Bank Runoff Endorsements”

Insiders See Close Race in Public Advocate’s Runoff

Councilwoman Tish James and State Senator Daniel Squadron face off in a debate. (Photo: YouTube)
Councilwoman Tish James and State Senator Daniel Squadron face off in a televised debate. (Photo: YouTube)

Although the chaotic Democratic mayoral primary has ended with Bill de Blasio emerging the victor, the race to replace the public advocate is just ramping up.

The October 1 runoff between Brooklyn Councilwoman Tish James and State Senator Daniel Squadron is widely seen as a tossup by political insiders, who note each Democrat carries glaring strengths and weaknesses into the contest. While Ms. James has a broad labor coalition and would be the only non-white Democrat to win a nomination, Mr. Squadron has enjoyed a fund-raising advantage and solid debate performances thus far.

Continue reading “Insiders See Close Race in Public Advocate’s Runoff”

Despite Bravado, Teachers’ Union Bets Wrong Again

The UFT endorsing Bill Thompson in June.
The UFT endorsing Bill Thompson in June.

The city’s powerful teachers’ union just can’t seem to get mayoral races right.

When the United Federation of Teachers offered its coveted endorsement to Bill Thompson in June, it was seen as a game changer for the candidate. But the union’s efforts came up short yet again, with Mr. Thompson conceding the contest today after placing a distant second.

This is not a new situation for the UFT, which chose to sit out the 2005 and 2009 races, and–as its critics like to point out–last backed a winning candidate in 1989.

Continue reading “Despite Bravado, Teachers’ Union Bets Wrong Again”

Al Sharpton: Identity Politics Has Given Way to ‘Identity Politics of Policy’

Bill de Basio, his wife and daughter at the National Action Network. (Photo: Twitter/Rachel Noerdlinger)
Bill de Basio, his wife and daughter at the National Action Network. (Photo: Twitter/Rachel Noerdlinger)

Rev. Al Sharpton welcomed “presumptive” Democratic mayoral nominee Bill de Blasio to his Saturday National Action Network rally this morning, where he declared that the identity politics of 20 years ago had given way to a new reality.

“What the election showed the other night is that a lot of the identity politics of 20 years ago, 30 years ago, has now become identity politics of policy,” he told the audience. “Bill Thompson did very well in some white areas, Bill de Blasio did well in some black areas. You can no longer take yesterday’s maps for today’s politics.”

Continue reading “Al Sharpton: Identity Politics Has Given Way to ‘Identity Politics of Policy’”

Bill de Blasio: ‘Do I Look Like a Guy in Limbo?’

Bill de Blasio today.
Bill de Blasio today.

A confident Bill de Blasio brushed off suggestions that the Democratic nomination is in limbo, telling reporters this afternoon that he’s moving full steam ahead, regardless of the final outcome of the mayoral race’s count.

“I don’t feel like I’m in limbo,” declared Mr. de Blasio, speaking to reporters at a lively rally in Brooklyn celebrating a judge’s ruling to keep Long Island College Hospital open indefinitely, to supporters’ enthusiastic applause.

“Can I ask the audience, ‘Do I look like a guy in limbo?'” he asked them.

Continue reading “Bill de Blasio: ‘Do I Look Like a Guy in Limbo?’”