Rep. Michael Grimm today voiced a more optimistic view on immigration reform than many of his fellow House Republicans. He described the existing immigration system as “completely broken” and “unsustainable” and said that on the question of “deal[ing] with those that are here” there’s “more common ground than you think” in the House of Representatives. Grimm was dismissive of President Obama’s recently announced executive order, but expressed a belief that legislative action is possible.
We spoke with Grimm in Port Richmond, just after he handed out free turkeys to a group that likely included undocumented immigrants. The distribution was in conjunction with the Rev. Erick Salgado and was held at the site of Rev. Salgado’s church on Staten Island, which was destroyed by fire several months ago. I began by asking Grimm how a moment like this affects his thinking on immigration. He did not respond directly on that point, but gave a detailed response on the broader issue of immigration.
Mayoral candidate Erick Salgado held a rally on the steps of City Hall today together with Adolfo Carrion, a Democrat now running for mayor on the Independence Party line in November’s general election. Together, Salgado and Carrion called for latino Democratic voters to vote for Salgado in tomorrow’s primary. Salgado addressed what he views as racist exclusionary tactics deployed against him during the race. He also weighed in on Michael Bloomberg’s recent characterization of Bill de Blasio’s campaign as “racist.”
Tonight, the Presidents Co-op & Condo Council of Queens and the Queens County Bar Association co-sponsored a mayoral candidate forum. Eight candidates attended, appearing before a crowd of 400-500 and answering questions posed by moderator Azi Paybarah. Attendees included, in order of appearance: Sal Albanese, Joe Lhota, George McDonald, Anthony Weiner, Erick Salgado, Adolfo Carrion, Christine Quinn and John Catsimatidis.
Update #3 – Salgado re: Anthony Weiner & His Ideas:
Erick Salgado discusses Anthony Weiner’s adoption of Salgado’s idea, at least according to Salgado.
As Anthony Weiner went to the podium at last night’s forum, a small wave of groans and discontent rumbled through the audience. Here is Weiner’s reaction when asked about the audience response.
Update – Something Positive About My Rivals? Ummm …:
Moderator Azi Paybarah asked all eight candidates a simple, but revealing question: Can you say something positive, or something interesting that you’ve learned, about any one of your rivals? The answers range from very warm and friendly to “all about me.” Watch.
Weiner v. McDonald:
To start our coverage, we have a brief clip of Anthony Weiner and George McDonald crossing paths. You may recall that Weiner and McDonald had a confrontation at an earlier forum. McDonald has been highly, and vocally, critical of Weiner and his sexting.
Mayoral candidates flocked to today’s Dominican Day Parade.
To start our coverage, here’s a short clip from Anthony Weiner’s parade visit. It’s important to note that Anthony Weiner wore his special red pants to the parade. To set the scene, during a momentary break in the parade I put my camera down on a very short tripod, with this clip as the result.
Update #1 – Eliot Spitzer:
We spoke briefly with comptroller candidate Eliot Spitzer. (We also looked for Scott Stringer. A group of his supporters marched past, but he was not with them.)
Update #2 – Erick Salgado:
We spoke with mayoral candidate Erick Salgado about his exclusion from an upcoming mayoral candidate debate to be televised on WABC-TV.
Update #3 – Anthony Weiner:
Here’s a montage of Anthony Weiner marching running through the parade.
Bronx Community College hosted a mayoral candidate forum this evening. Moderated by Errol Louis, in his 11th mayoral forum of the year, the forum featured separate panels with the Republican and Democratic candidates.
Update #2: Weiner, The Audience & His Rivals
Anthony Weiner mostly succeeded with the audience, as shown in this report. His rivals mounted several attacks on him, without success.
Update: Weiner Media Availability
Here is Anthony Weiner’s full media availability following the forum, which runs about 4 minutes. He repeats his continuing responses: what I did was wrong, it’s all behind me now, I’m not going to answer in detail and I want to talk about issues and don’t care what my competitors say. (Note: The music you’ll hear was playing over the house sound system.)
Weiner Responds to Question of whether he uses “Facebook or Twitter”
The Democratic candidate segment featured a “Lightning Round” of yes/no and “pick A or B” questions intended to provide a peek into the candidates personalities. The final question was not what Anthony Weiner was hoping for.
Last night, El Diario, the Hispanic Federation and Hostos Community College hosted a mayoral forum with seven Democrats, two Republicans and one Independence Party candidate. It was quite an evening.
Update #3: Quinn v. de Blasio
In this excerpt, Christine Quinn and Bill de Blasio engage in a pointed discussion of their respective views of their accomplishments.
Update #2: Weiner on his House Immigration Subcommittee Work
In this excerpt, Anthony Weiner is asked what he accomplished as a member of the House Subcommittee on Immigration. He demonstrates his substantial speaking skills, giving a lengthy description of acting as “an advocate” and pledging to be “an advocate on immigration” just “as Mayor Bloomberg does on guns.” When pressed by the moderator on what he has to show from his time on that subcommittee, Weiner says that “every member of the Democratic caucus … didn’t get much done” during that time. He does, however, assert that he “tilled the fields” and “fought really hard.”
Update: O, Alma Mater, glorious …
In this brief excerpt, the candidates focus on their love for a particular high school. Really. Well worth watching.
In our initial report the candidates discuss the city’s solid waste disposal plan. It’s a unique exchange in several ways. First, more than any other forum or debate segment that I can recall, the candidates engage in a long and unusually involved discussion with each other. Second, there are some clear personal frictions that emerge. Finally, there are a few loopy moments. All in all, this segment displays more candidate personalities more effectively than any other moment that I’ve seen so far in the campaign.
Last night, Union Settlement Association and several other groups hosted an East Harlem Mayoral Forum. Seven candidates participated: Sal Albanese, Adolfo Carrion, Bill de Blasio, John Liu, George McDonald, Erick Salgado and Bill Thompson.
Update: This excerpt covers a question concerning job training, with the complete candidate answers. (George McDonald arrived during this question/answer and was not invited to answer this question.)
For our initial report, here are the two “lightning rounds” conducted by moderator Errol Louis. In the first lightning round, held mid-forum, all seven candidates participated. The second lightning round was held at the end of the forum, with four candidates remaining. All of the questions cover substantive policy issues, and the last may be the most surprising.
Be sure to watch our post-forum conversation with Errol Louis, available here.
Also, don’t miss our lighthearted look at this forum, available here.
Finally, courtesy of the forum hosts, here is a transcript.
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.
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.
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.
Erick Salgado made a widely noted comment at last night’s debate that he would consider appointing Rudy Giuliani as police commissioner. While that seems virtually certain to not occur, the comment does illustrate that Salgado, contrary to the prevailing Democratic view, has previously spoken admiringly of Giuliani’s policing policies.
Here is a short clip from Salgado’s campaign kickoff in early April in which he laments that “our police department cannot follow and continue the tough on crime policy of Mayor Giuliani”.
Our full report on Salgado’s campaign kickoff is here.
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