Mayoral candidate Bo Dietl provoked outrage last night with a seemingly offhand comment at the Manhattan Republican Party’s mayoral candidate forum. Dietl, who muffed an attempt last year at shifting his party registration from Republican to Democratic and is now seeking Republican Party permission to run as a Republican despite not being currently registered as a Republican, filed a lawsuit against the Board of Elections. As he tried to explain the saga during his closing comments last night, Dietl blamed “de Blasio’s tentacles” as responsible for the adverse Board of Elections ruling. Of the judge who heard his lawsuit Dietl said “the judge looked like Charlene de Blasio (sic) and as soon as I saw her … I knew I had a problem.”
Here is Dietl’s closing statement:
Speaking with reporters afterwards, and here responding to Politico’s Azi Paybarah, Dietl defended his comment:
Update – Faulkner:
Michel Faulkner was asked (by Politico’s Azi Paybarah) about Dietl’s comment during a post-forum press Q&A, terming it “offensive” and “could be borderline racist.” Faulkner nonetheless unambiguously expressed affection for Dietl, concluding his remarks by saying “put that down, make sure you say ‘I love Bo.'” The brief exchange also featured a interruption by a Dietl staffer, which Faulkner brushed aside.