All posts by John Kenny

Errol Louis on the Plethora of Forums



Last night Errol Louis moderated his 8th mayoral candidate forum of 2013.  After the forum, hosted by Union Settlement Association and several other groups, we spoke with Errol concerning the many candidate forums and whether they are productive for candidates and for voters.

Be sure to watch our previous discussions on the multitude of forums, one with forum moderator and former mayoral candidate Tom Allon, Comptroller and mayoral candidate John Liu and candidate Sal Albanese, available here, and one with political journalist and triple forum moderator Brian Lehrer and candidate Joe Lhota, available here.

Mayoral Forum: North of 96th Street Public Health Coalition (Updated)



The North of 96th Street Public Health Coalition recently held a “Mayoral Forum on Public Health Issues in the Communities of Harlem and Northern Manhattan”.  Five candidates, Sal Albanese, Adolfo Carrion, John Liu, Erick Salgado and Bill Thompson attended, while the remaining Democratic and all of the Republican candidates declined invitations.

Continue reading Mayoral Forum: North of 96th Street Public Health Coalition (Updated)

Democratic Candidates on Union Contract Retroactive Pay



At the mayoral candidate forum hosted by DC 37, four Democratic candidates responded to a question on whether they were opposed to retroactive pay under union contracts “in principle”.  The four responding candidates were Bill de Blasio, Sal Albanese, Erick Salgado and John Liu.  Christine Quinn did not attend the forum and Bill Thompson arrived after this discussion.

Be sure to watch our earlier coverage of the DC 37 Forum here.

Republican Debate Report (Updated)



Update:

Here’s a segment with George McDonald and Joe Lhota discussing bike lanes and the Citi Bike program.  The audience was most animated and engaged on this topic, and clearly not fully in sync with either McDonald or Lhota.  The question was narrowly posed: “Are bike lanes dangerous?”

McDonald began by holding out his Citi Bike membership card, drawing a few mild boos.  He then unequivocally stated that he’s in favor of bike lanes, pivoted to a critique of “anybody [read: Democratic mayoral candidates] who criticizes the New York City Police Department for political gain” and concluded.

Lhota began with a lengthy critique of bike lanes, noting the importance of vigorous enforcement of bike safety laws and that “bike lanes do impede commerce” before stating that he’s “not opposed to the Citi Bikes program.”  (He doesn’t state whether he supports or opposes bike lanes.)  Lhota then conflated the Citi Bikes program with the death of a bicyclist unrelated to the Citi Bikes program, stirring consternation in his audience.    Lhota  closed by criticizing a lack of coordination among city agencies in implementing the Citi Bikes, without mentioning or directly criticizing Michael Bloomberg.

(John Catsimatidis attended part of this forum, but left before this discussion.)

                                       

At a candidate forum hosted by the Republican National Lawyers Association, Joe Lhota gave a pointed criticism of the Office of Emergency Management under Mayor Bloomberg.  OEM was created during the Giuliani administration and was the focus of significant energy and attention during that administration.

While Lhota has generally spoken highly of Mayor Bloomberg, he has nonetheless offered sharp comments on a number of specific actions and agency management issues under the Bloomberg administration.

Here is what Lhota had to say:

Army Corps of Engineers Update



The United States Army Corps of Engineers is performing substantial Sandy-recovery work in Rockaway and elsewhere.  We spoke with Colonel Paul Owen, commander of the New York District of the Army Corps of Engineers, for an update on their progress and a look ahead.

Additional detailed information from the Army Corps of Engineers is available here.

D’aja Robinson



D’aja Robinson, a 14 year girl, was shot and killed Saturday evening while boarding a city bus.  Council Speaker Christine Quinn, along with other elected officials and community leaders, held a press conference to draw attention to the ongoing investigation and possible preventative measures.  Here is an excerpt from Speaker Quinn’s remarks.

Tour de Gracie: The Peloton Reels Quinn Back In



The mayoral race is like a long distance bicycle race, with the peloton reeling the current breakaway leader back in.   In long distance bike races, such as the Tour de France, often a single rider will break will away from the peloton, or main pack of riders, and move into a significant lead for a time.  Without the wind and friction breaking benefit of riding in the pack, the breakaway rider often tires and eventually fades back into the peloton.

In the Quinnipiac poll released this morning, the breakaway leader continues her slide back into the peloton.  Here are a few observations: Continue reading Tour de Gracie: The Peloton Reels Quinn Back In

Bob Hennelly & the 5 Amigos (Updated x 3)



Yesterday evening District Council 37 held a mayoral forum with five Democratic candidates.  We’ll be providing some extended reporting on the forum.

Update #3:  DC 37 endorsed John Liu for mayor on May 29th.  Extended excerpts of John Liu at the mayoral forum are here.

Update #2:  Excerpts showing the discussion on retroactive pay under union contracts are here.

Update:  Here are excerpts showing moderator Bob Hennelly in action.  In this forum, his campaign season premier, he joined the ranks of the 2013 campaign’s most effective moderators.  He skillfully used humor to facilitate the discussion, kept it moving while allowing time for substantive answers and interacted with a very engaged audience.  Unlike many moderators, he began with his own impassioned description of the state of the city as Mayor Bloomberg’s term comes to an end.

Our initial clip covers a question, and full answers, on a proposal to allow non-citizens to vote.  The exchange illustrates several features of last night’s forum:  host Bob Hennelly’s use of humor to effectively facilitate the discussion while keeping it moving, the candidate’s attempts, some humorous, to engage the audience, in this case with their widely varying spanish language skills, John Liu running to the left of the more measured Bills (Thompson and de Blasio) and a very engaged audience which at the start of this question objected to the questioner speaking in spanish rather than english.