It was a Republican wrestling match as four candidates seeking the Republican nomination for mayor came together last night, participating in a forum hosted by the Manhattan Republican Party at the Upper East Side’s Metropolitan Republican Club. Smiling, joking and mostly making nice, they harshly attacked Mayor Bill de Blasio as the four engaged in their first group forum. They threw a few barbs at each other, and one managed to draw harsh condemnation afterwards for a comment involving Mayor de Blasio’s wife, but they mostly tried to push past each other as they sought audience and press attention.
Michel Faulkner, Nicole Malliotakis and Paul Massey are Republicans seeking their party’s nomination while Bo Dietl is a former Republican seeking a party waiver to run in the Republican primary. The forum was important for all four, but especially critical for Dietl as he seeks a Wilson-Pakula; dispensation from at least three of the GOP county chairs to run in the Republican primary. All five were present, part of an overcapacity crowd and large press contingent.
Here is the full forum, including the introductory remarks of Manhattan GOP Chairwoman Adele Malpass:
The Republican mayoral primary rolled through Queens Village Sunday as America’s oldest Republican club held its annual Lincoln Day Dinner. Over 300 people attended, lamenting the perceived faults of the de Blasio administration and hoping for a path to ending that administration. Candidate Michel Faulkner and prospective candidate John Catsimatidis spoke during the dinner, while candidate Paul Massey attended the cocktail hour but did not address the crowd, departing before the dinner began. 2014 Republican gubernatorial nominee Rob Astorino also attended the cocktail hour, but departed without addressing the crowd.
With a long list of speakers and honorees, the dinner program limited the mayoral candidates to about 5 minutes each. Faulkner took full advantage of his short time, launching into a fiery denunciation of Mayor de Blasio with a “dump de Blasio chant” and a declaration of “desperate times” in both the country and the city. He breezed past his campaign finance difficulties, proclaiming that he’s “in it to win it.” He closed by quoting Donald Trump; unlike Paul Massey and prospective candidate Eric Ulrich, Faulkner is an enthusiastic Trump supporter.
It was dinner with the 1%. Not that 1%, but the 1% of New York City voters registered as Bronx Republicans. The not-quite 40,000 registered Bronx Republicans comprise less than 1% of New York City’s registered voters and don’t have any New York City or New York State elected officials, but they hosted an energetic dinner last night featuring two mayoral candidates and one prospective candidate.
Cast by Bronx County Republican Chairman Mike Rendino as kicking off the 2017 Republican mayoral race, the dinner featured appearances by candidates Paul Massey and Michel Faulkner and possible candidate John Catsimatidis. Among the three hundred or so attendees were Republican State Chairman Ed Cox, Republican County chairs from Queens, Manhattan and Staten Island and New York City’s two Republican members of the New York State Assembly, Staten Islanders Nicole Malliotakis and Ron Castorina.
Mayor Bill de Blasio marked the third anniversary of Hurricane Sandy today with a visit to Staten Island’s south shore. Appearing in front of a home rebuilt by the Build It Back program, de Blasio lauded the progress in Build It Back during his administration. He announced that the program is to be completed by the end of 2016 and detailed the evolution in the program from the time he took office. Among the statistics he cited were “2,015 construction starts (including 1,217 construction completions), as well as 5,319 reimbursement checks totaling nearly $104 million”, while noting that each of these categories was at zero when he took office.
Republican mayoral candidate John Catsimatidis and Assembly Member Nicole Malliotakis held a press conference today to criticize the MTA and it’s scheduled increase of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge toll.
In this report, we cover what Catsimatidis had to say about some of his rivals, including one who was chairman of the MTA, and his suggestion as to how two of those rivals could help the Republican Party.
We’ll have more about their press conference in a later report.
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