The Rev. Al Sharpton drew a large contingent of elected officials to his annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration at National Action Network’s House of Justice. Headliners included U.S. Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, Mayor Bill de Blasio and U.S. Reps. Jerry Nadler, Hakeem Jeffries, Yvette Clarke and Carolyn Maloney. NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer, Council Speaker and Acting Public Advocate Corey Johnson, NYS Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and NYS Senate Temporary President and Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins also spoke.
Several of the public advocate candidates participated, including Assembly Members Latrice Walker, Michael Blake and Danny O’Donnell, Council Members Jumaane Williams and Rafael Espinal, former Council speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Dawn Smalls. Walker, Blake, O’Donnell and Smalls were given speaking slots. Former mayor David Dinkins and former congressman Charles Rangel appeared, sitting onstage in the front row for the full program.
Governor Andrew Cuomo marked his primary victory over Cynthia Nixon and the start of the general election campaign with a Midtown rally featuring a large group of Democratic elected officials and candidates. Headlined by Cuomo and running mate Kathy Hochul, attendees included New York City’s three citywide elected officials, Mayor Bill de Blasio, Public Advocate and attorney general candidate Tish James and Comptroller Scott Stringer, as well as Council Speaker Corey Johnson. House members attending included Jerry Nadler, Carolyn Maloney, Hakeem Jeffries, Joe Crowley, Jose Serrano, Gregory Meeks, Grace Meng, Yvette Clarke, Adriano Espaillat and Tom Suozzi.
Some of the successful challengers to state senate IDC members attended, including Alessandra Biaggi who defeated IDC leader Jeff Klein and Robert Jackson. Notable candidates not spotted included Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who defeated Rep. Joe Crowley in the June primary, and incumbent NYS Comptroller Tom DiNapoli. Additionally, Cuomo’s and Hochul’s primary challengers Cynthia Nixon and Jumaane Williams did not attend.
Mayor Bill de Blasio today joined New York City members of the House of Representatives in urging newly elected House Speaker Paul Ryan to pass legislation permanently reauthorizing and fully funding the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Reauthorization Act. de Blasio hosted a meeting and press conference at City Hall with House members Charles B. Rangel, Joe Crowley, Carolyn Maloney, Jose Serrano, Nydia Velazquez, Hakeem Jeffries, Gregory Meeks and Yvette Clarke. Dan Donovan attended the closed press meeting, but did not attend the press conference. Police Commissioner Bill Bratton and Public Advocate Tish James also attended the press conference.
For Mayor de Blasio it was a moment of shared interest, if not unity, with a group that he’s had a variety of political differences with. Renewal of the Zadroga Act, funding treatment for first responders ill from the effects of working in the wreckage of the World Trade Center, is a strongly shared interest transcending a variety of differences de Blasio has with City House members. It faces strong opposition in the Republican Congress, however, and a floor vote in the House is not certain to occur.
He went from prayers to produce in a Bed-Stuy flash.
Just minutes after a closing prayer at a political event Thursday night Governor Andrew Cuomo made a quick visit to a Bed-Stuy grocery store, greeting shoppers and staff and joining a grand reopening ribbon cutting.
Governor Cuomo attended a political event hosted by City Council Member Robert Cornegy in Bed-Stuy’s Restoration Plaza, receiving an award for “outstanding leadership and courage.” Cornegy was joined by other Democratic Brooklyn elected officials, including Rep. Hakeem Jeffries and Assembly Members Annette Robinson, Latrice Walker and Diana Richardson and Brooklyn Democratic County Chair Frank Seddio.
The event wrapped up with a prayer, introduced by Cornegy saying “Governor Cuomo, we know that prayer has been taken out of the schools but it hasn’t been taken out of Bedford Stuyvesant and Crown Heights.” As the minister leading the prayer asked that “everyone hold hands”, Cornegy chimed in “except the photographers.” Cuomo joined the audience in clasping hands with his neighbors and bowing his head as the minister led a prayer in appreciation of Cuomo’s attending the event and praying for Cuomo’s safe travel home.
As Cornegy concluded he invited the audience, including the Governor, to join him at a grand reopening of an adjacent grocery store. “Let’s go!” replied Cuomo. The press, the elected officials and Cuomo and his staff then headed to Super Foodtown, about 100 yards away via an interior courtyard. Continue reading The Grocery Governor (Updated*)→
The Cuomo-Jeffries lovefest continued last night, with Governor Andrew Cuomo and Congressman Hakeem Jeffries lauding each other in back to back speeches. Jeffries gave a warm introduction of Cuomo at an event in Brooklyn’s Bed-Stuy hosted by City Council Member Robert Cornegy, presenting Cuomo with an award for “outstanding leadership and courage in addressing the issues so vital to our Brooklyn communities.” Recent news reports say that Cuomo has encouraged Jeffries to consider running for mayor against Bill de Blasio.
Governor Cuomo reciprocated Jeffries’ warm introduction with kind words of his own. Here’s an excerpt from his speech in which he talks about Jeffries:
Here is Jeffries’ full speech, praising Cuomo generally as a “man of action”, and specifically on his executive order appointing the attorney general as a special prosecutor to investigate deaths of unarmed civilians killed by police. Jeffries recounted several recent notorious cases, including Eric Garner, noting that “those officers weren’t even charged with a misdemeanor count of assault” as Cuomo listened and nodded.
Mayor Bill de Blasio and Senator Chuck Schumer announced $3 billion in federal funding for Sandy-related repairs and resiliency improvements for the New York City Housing Authority. Speaking at an afternoon press conference in Red Hook, de Blasio and Schumer celebrated the massive block of federal funding intended for 33 separate NYCHA developments.
de Blasio and Schumer were joined by Reps. Gregory Meeks, Nydia Velazquez and Hakeem Jeffries, Council Member Carlos Menchaca, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams and NYCHA CEO Shola Olatoye.
Nine members of congress representing New York City discussed the upcoming speech by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to Congress and whether they plan to attend. Senator Chuck Schumer and Representatives Charles Rangel, Jerrold Nadler, Carolyn Maloney, Joe Crowley, Hakeem Jeffries, Grace Meng, Nydia Velazquez and Yvette Clarke joined Mayor Bill de Blasio this morning for a press conference at Gracie Mansion intended to focus on the House Republicans’ inability to fund DHS for longer than this week.
Senator Schumer and six of the eight house members said that they plan to attend. Charles Rangel does not plan to attend and Yvette Clarke said that she has not yet decided. Many of the representatives had harsh words for House Speaker John Boehner, with Velazquez denouncing his actions as “shameful.” Mayor de Blasio harshly criticized Speaker Boehner for his invitation to Netanyahu, but since he is not a member of congress de Blasio does not have the option to attend.
Here’s what Senator Schumer and the House members had to say:
As the war between Israel and Hamas continues, New York Jewish organizations organized a large rally in support of Israel. Held today in Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, just across from the United Nations, the rally featured many elected officials. Among those participating were Senator Chuck Schumer, Representatives Eliot Engel, Steve Israel, Nydia Velazquez, Grace Meng and Hakeem Jeffries, City Comptroller Scott Stringer, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and Council Member Dan Garodnick. Other elected officials attending, but not participating in the program, were Assembly Members Phil Goldfeder, David Weprin, Richard Gottfried, Nily Rozic, Ed Braunstein and Chuck Lavine, and Council Member Mark Weprin.
The rally varied significantly from the July 14th press conference organized by some of the same groups. Today’s event was a rally, with a large crowd (claimed by organizers to be 15,000), while the July 14th event was a press conference without a substantial crowd of supporters. The July 14th press conference was held on the steps of City Hall and counter-demonstrators, while kept outside of City Hall’s gates, shouted at and over the press conference. Today’s rally was so large, and in a differently configured location, that any protests/counter-demonstrators were inaudible at the rally.
We’ll start our coverage with the barn burner of a speech from Brooklyn Democratic Congressman Hakeem Jeffries.
Update – Protest:
Here’s our look at the reception given to a group of anti-Israel counter-demonstrators.
Update #2 – New York Elected Officials:
Here’s a highlight reel with excerpts from the speeches of New York elected officials:
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