Republican gubernatorial candidate Marc Molinaro came to New York City’s City Hall Monday, joined by running mate Julie Killian and Council Member Joe Borelli for a press conference focused on opposing Governor Andrew Cuomo’s effort at eliminating the tip credit. (The tip credit allows paying tipped service workers, such as waiters/waitresses and bartenders, less than minimum wage due to their receiving significant tip income. Eliminating it would raise wages but, in the view of many in the hospitality industry, lead to many establishments eliminating tipping completely and consequently reducing tipped workers income.) Other topics included Molinaro’s ability to reach City voters, whether he has a preference in the Democratic gubernatorial primary and his reaction to the Trump/Putin Helsinki press conference.
New York State senate candidate Jessica Ramos added another elected official endorsement today, as Assembly Member Aravella Simotas expressed her support at a press conference in Astoria. Ramos is running in the Democratic primary against incumbent Senator Jose Peralta. Peralta had been a part of the IDC, the breakaway state senate Democrats who cooperated with Republicans and handed the Republicans control despite being in the minority. Although the IDC and mainline Democrats reconciled in April in an arrangement brokered by Governor Cuomo, Ramos has continued her candidacy and efforts to oust fellow Democrat Peralta.
Democratic candidates Cynthia Nixon and Jessica Ramos exchanged endorsements today, adding to the developing organization of candidates opposed to Andrew Cuomo and the State Democratic Party. Nixon, running for governor against Cuomo, and Ramos, running for state senate against incumbent Senator Jose Peralta, spoke at a press conference in Jackson Heights. Peralta is a former member of the IDC, a group of Democratic state senators who aligned with the Republican members for the past seven years. In April Governor Cuomo engineered a public display of unity between the leader of the IDC and the mainline Senate Democrats but many of those former IDC members, including Peralta, face primary opponents driven by anger at the IDC’s enabling of Republican control of the state senate.
Nixon previously exchanged endorsements with Julia Salazar, running against incumbent Senator Martin Dilan, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez who defeated incumbent Rep. Joe Crowley two weeks ago.
Former New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito endorsed Cynthia Nixon for governor Sunday, adding some progressive political credibility to Nixon’s underdog campaign. The two spoke at a press conference at 116th Street and Park Avenue, in the heart of Mark-Viverito’s former council district, with members of Make The Road New York Communities For Change joining them on a sweltering afternoon. After the press conference Mark-Viverito and Nixon down Park Avenue several blocks to an outdoor music festival.
Approximately 1,000 people rallied in Jackson Heights Saturday in support of immigrants and asylum seekers detained by the Trump administration and in opposition to the Trump administration’s policy separating children from their parents. Organized by state senate candidate Jessica Ramos, the rally and march was one of hundreds of similar events held throughout the country, including a larger rally in Lower Manhattan with a march across the Brooklyn Bridge. The Jackson Heights rally was held in front the Post Office on 37th Avenue, with a march along 37th Avenue to the Park of the Americas in Corona.
Republican Congressman Dan Donovan defeated predecessor and challenger Michael Grimm in a bitter GOP primary, trumping Grimm’s professed allegiance to Donald Trump and Trump-like personality with an endorsement from Trump. Donovan was first elected in a special election in 2015 prompted by Grimm’s resignation after pleading guilty to federal tax fraud charges and being sentenced to federal prison. Grimm returned seeking his old seat this year, in a Trump era battle in which the candidates sought to most closely align themselves with the president.
Mayor Bill de Blasio visited a Harlem social services agency that has custody of more than 200 children recently separated from their parents under the Trump administration’s new policy on migrants seeking asylum. de Blasio met with staff of Cayuga Centers inside their Harlem office and then held a press conference on the sidewalk, condemning the Trump administration policy and vowing to oppose it.
The Conservative Party of New York recently selected its 2018 designated candidates for statewide office, mirroring the Republican Party with its choices of Marc Molinaro, Julie Killian, Keith Wofford and Jonathan Trichter for governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general and comptroller, respectively.
There was no debate and virtually no dissent as the Conservative Party selected three Republicans and a Democrat, with a bellowed “no!” to the nomination of Killian the only sign of disagreement from the 50 state committee members.
The New York Working Families Party completed its rejection of Andrew Cuomo, nominating Cynthia Nixon for governor and Jumaane Williams for lieutenant governor at its recent convention. The WFP had endorsed Nixon and Williams in April, but those endorsements did not actually place them on the ballot as candidates. The party held a two-part session at Harlem’s First Corinthian Baptist Church, with a formal nominating meeting in an upstairs room followed by a rally and candidate speeches in the church’s main hall.
Republican Manny Alicandro launched his campaign for attorney general last week, appearing on Wall Street in front of Federal Hall. Alicandro’s appearance was low wattage, without a backdrop of supporters and a limited showing of party leaders with one Republican county chair, Mike Rendino of the Bronx, and two Conservative Party chairman, Tom Long of Queens and Gerard Kassar of Brooklyn joining him.
The race was transformed hours later as incumbent attorney general Eric Schneiderman suddenly resigned, shortly after The New Yorker reported on multiple allegations of assault by Schneiderman against romantic partners. Schneiderman had been widely viewed as virtually certain to be reelected to a third term, and the Republican Party had found little interest from potential candidates. At his launch Alicandro appeared to likely be the only candidate for the Republican and Conservative Party nominations, but additional prospective candidates have surfaced in the wake of Schneiderman’s resignation. Continue reading Alicandro Launches
Gubernatorial candidate Cynthia Nixon appeared at a Union Square rally following the Pro-Cannabis Parade last Saturday, urging full legalization of marijuana. Speaking to about 1,000 people Nixon cast her support as primarily driven by racial disparity in marijuana arrests, declaring that “I want to do it first and foremost because it’s a racial justice issue.”
Legalization has moved close to, if not quite right inside, the political mainstream in recent years. It’s still somewhat outside that mainstream with New York elected officials however, and that distance was reflected in the paucity of electeds and candidates appearing at this rally. Although the rally was fairly heavy on gubernatorial candidates, with Nixon, Green Party candidate Howie Hawkins and Reform Party hopeful Joel Giambra appearing, neither Andrew Cuomo or Marc Molinaro appeared or have voiced support for full legalization. Assembly Member Dick Gottfried, who proudly touted his 1975 bill that decriminalized possession of small amounts of marijuana, and Council Member and candidate for lieutenant governor Jumaane Williams also spoke.
The Working Families Party endorsed Cynthia Nixon for governor and Jumaane Williams for lieutenant governor, rejecting its 2014 path of political accommodation and instead supporting Nixon and Williams over Governor Andrew Cuomo and Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. The 2014 endorsements were contentious, with a pragmatic view of the utility of supporting Cuomo’s reelection overcoming the ideological kinship many in the party had with Zephyr Teachout and Tim Wu. Several large unions have left the WFP since then however, with 32BJ and CWA withdrawing just ahead of the Nixon endorsement.
New York elected officials flocked to Park Avenue to support 32BJ SEIU in its contract talks with building owners. Thousands of 32BJ SEIU union members gathered for a rally featuring speeches from many of those elected officials and culminating in a vote to authorize a strike should negotiations fail. Elected officials attending included Governor Andrew Cuomo, Mayor Bill de Blasio, Public Advocate Tish James, Comptroller Scott Stringer and many state and city legislators.