Back in March of this year, Democratic State Senate candidate John Messer, an attorney and businessman, pledged to invest half of a million dollars into his own campaign. Of course, lots of candidates pledge to spend large amounts, and, as can be seen in the case of Nassau County Comptroller George Maragos’ campaign for the U.S. Senate, even money loaned to an electoral effort can be retracted. Mr. Messer, however, appears like he’s fully on track to meet his promise as he seeks to unseat incumbent Queens Senator Toby Ann Stavisky. Read More
City Councilman Eric Ulrich, campaigning for the Republican nomination to take on incumbent Senator Joe Addabbo, got a nice little boost for his campaign this afternoon when he announced that Congressman Pete King is endorsing his electoral effort. Although Mr. King doesn’t represent the Queens district, his turf isn’t too far away and the veteran representative very well might be the state’s top GOP official.
“Eric understands that the way to put New Yorkers back to work and grow our economy is by lowering taxes on families and small businesses and reigning in the reckless government spending that has created unsustainable deficits and threatens our competitiveness,” Mr. King said in the statement. “His conservative principles of limited government, safe streets and a strong quality of life will make him an excellent representative in Albany and I urge all Republicans to vote for him on September 13th.” Read More
As State Senator Adriano Espaillat seeks reelection, he’s been slowly rolling out endorsement after endorsement, making it clear that even if his campaign is opposed by Congressman Charlie Rangel and possibly the county Democratic organization, he’s still the establishment favorite. Mr. Espaillat, of course, is being opposed by the Rangel-backed candidacy of Assemblyman Guillermo Linares after narrowly losing a primary challenge himself against Mr. Rangel earlier this summer.
The most recent endorsement was yesterday’s announcement of Public Advocate Bill de Blasio’ support, and before that, Congressman Jerry Nadler’s at the end of last week. Mr. de Blasio’s move isn’t that surprising as he was the lone major 2013 mayoral contender who didn’t endorse Mr. Rangel during his reelection bid, but Mr. Nadler solidly backed his House colleague in that contest. Read More
Avraham Tischler, a 21-year-old candidate running against establishment favorite Simcha Felder in the so-called “Super Jewish” state senate district, has a novel idea. Instead of saying he’ll caucus with Democratic Minority Leader John Sampson or Republican Majority Leader Dean Skelos, Mr. Tischler, a Democrat, said he’ll support Bronx State Senator Rubén Díaz instead.
Mr. Díaz would initially seem to be an odd choice for Mr. Tischler, but the state senator, a political gadfly known for his staunch socially conservative positions, allows Mr. Tischler to back a fellow Democrat without saying he’ll back a liberal like Mr. Sampson. Read More
Jason Otaño, currently the General Counsel to Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, will launch his state senate campaign against Martin Dilan next Thursday with the backing of Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez and Councilwoman Diana Reyna. The move sets up yet another match between the county’s Democratic organization, led by Assemblyman Vito Lopez, and those who oppose his rule.
This reoccurring theme most recently played out when Mr. Dilan’s son Erik challenged Ms. Velázquez, resulting in an election last week where he was soundly beaten. Ms. Velázquez performed well even in Dilan territory, which surely emboldened Mr. Otaño and his supporters. However, defeating an incumbent is never an easy task, and he starts out as the underdog in the race. Read More
Retiring State Senator Tom Duane officially endorsed Brad Hoylman to succeed him for his west side seat.
“I’m proud and excited to endorse Brad Hoylman for State Senate,” Mr. Duane said in a statement. “He shares my progressive values and commitment to reform, and he has devoted the last two decades to serving our community. I know he will continue to champion so many of the causes that I have fought for throughout my career.”
Mr. Hoylman is the chair of Community Board 2, and was, up until Mr. Duane’s retirement announcement, running for Christine Quinn’s City Council seat. There are a handful of other candidates in the race, but Mr. Hoylman has received the bulk of the endorsements. This one doesn’t come as much of a surprise as Mr. Duane signaled that he favored Mr. Hoylman to replace him. Read More
Attorney Andrew Gounardes, the Democrat challenging State Senator Marty Golden in November, is bringing in some top Greek names in Democratic politics to give his campaign a boost, and he is even going all the way down to Washington D.C. to do it.
Indeed, helping Mr. Gounardes raise money next week are two Greek-American Congressional Members: John Sarbanes and Niki Tsongas (wife of former presidential candidate Paul Tsongas), who both hail from localities far away from the southern Brooklyn district Mr. Gounardes is seeking to represent. Read More
It’s official: State Senator David Storobin will run for reelection in a new, heavily Orthodox Jewish State Senate district. The move doesn’t exactly come as a surprise as Mr. Storobin had been strongly hinting at the possibility for some time, but as Hamodia‘s widely-read weekend edition will report tomorrow, his primary Republican opposition, attorney Nachman Caller, will drop out of the race and endorse Mr. Storobin, clearing his path to the GOP nomination.
Mr. Storobin finally won the recount for a special election in corrupt State Senator Carl Kruger’s district a week or so ago, but because his current seat was dismantled in this year’s redistricting process, his plans were previously in some doubt. Read More
Queens Councilman Eric Ulrich, currently a candidate for the State Senate against Joe Addabbo, announced he supports legislation to increase New York State’s minimum wage to $8.50 this evening. The move places him on the opposite side of the issue than Majority Leader Dean Skelos and the Republican conference, who steadfastly oppose the legislation.
“People are hurting in Queens and the current minimum wage simply isn’t enough to make ends meet for families here,” Mr. Ulrich said in a statement. “Single parent households are especially hit hard by the rising cost of living in New York. The bottom line is that there simply aren’t enough hours in the week at $7.25 per hour to pay the rent or mortgage and to buy the basic household items they need. I have listened to both sides of this argument, but one truth resonates more than any other: If we don’t take this action, too many families are going to go under.” Read More
City Councilman Lew Fidler currently trails David Storobin by three votes in the State Senate special election. The two sides are in court today, but there remains an outstanding question as the Democrats and Republicans battle over every last vote: Does Mr. Fidler even want to win.
Mr. Fidler’s current City Council salary is $112,000, plus whatever he gets as a chair of the Youth Services Committee; his State Senate salary would be $30,000 less. Plus, much of the work of the State Senate is done, since the budget was passed last month. If the recount drags on, Mr. Fidler may serve for only a few weeks or not at all, and he will be giving up a Council seat (albeit one he is term-limited out of in 2014) for a State Senate seat that will be redistricted out of existence by the time the November elections.
Thus, there have been persistent rumors that if he wins, Mr. Fidler will decline to be sworn in.
Today he tried to shut down those rumors. Read More