Category Archives: Michael Walrond

Rangel Roundup – An Overview of the Approaching CD13 Primary

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Congressman Charles B. Rangel faces his electorate one week from today, in a heated June 24th Democratic primary. Winning on June 24th will mean virtually certain reelection in November to what he says will be his final term, while losing will end his 44 years in Congress. There are four candidates next Tuesday but it’s mostly about Rangel, with the two biggest campaign moments coming straight from his lips. Here’s a close look at the race, featuring our extensive coverage at Continue reading Rangel Roundup – An Overview of the Approaching CD13 Primary

CD 13 Debate – The BronxTalk Edition (Updated)

Congressional candidates Adriano Espaillat and Michael Walrond joined host Gary Axelbank today on BronxTalk for their fifth debate.  (Close looks at their prior debates are here, here and here.)  The debate, which will be broadcast Monday at 9:00 p.m.*, features a 30 minute discussion among the three.  Charles Rangel cancelled his scheduled appearance, and the show left an empty chair on-set to mark his absence.  (We’ll bring you some clips from the debate after it airs on Monday evening.)

Both Espaillat and Walrond spoke with the press afterwards, discussing Rangel’s absence, top issues in the Bronx portion of the district and more.

Update – Bronx Issues:

I asked both candidates about what they see as the greatest difference in the needs of the Bronx portion of the district from the needs of the Manhattan portion of the district:


Here is Espaillat’s full press availability:


Here is Walrond’s full press availability:

*  The broadcast schedule, as provided by BronxTalk, is:

On Monday, June 16 at 9:00 p.m. it will be televised on BronxNet Channel 67 (Cablevision) and 33 (Verizon), and MNN Channel 34 (TWC), 82 (RCN) and 33 (Verizon) .  

CD 13 Slugfest: Round 4 (Updated x 2)

Congressman Charles B. Rangel, State Senator Adriano Espaillat and the Rev. Michael Walrond slugged it out tonight in their fourth debate.  Held at Lehman College in the Bronx, and hosted by NY1, the debate featured sharp exchanges as the electoral clock ticks louder.

All three candidates spoke with the press afterwards, continuing some of the debate themes and addressing some additional questions.


Rangel’s time with the press was quite a performance.   Intensity, flashes of wit and indignation at questions he regarded as flawed in their premise demonstrated his political skill.  Topics included his discussion of Espaillat’s 2012 “traitor” memo and comments last weekend by the Rev. Al Sharpton, whether Espaillat is hedging his electoral chances by preparing to run for re-election to the state senate should he lose this race, Rangel’s health, Eric Cantor and the Tea Party, the importance of local v. federal issues for a member of congress, deportation and Rangel’s description of Espaillat as a “trainee.”

Update – Espaillat:

Espaillat remained focused, attacking Rangel’s support of Gramm-Leach-Bliley, which repealed Glass-Steagal, and a recent amendment of Dodd-Frank and asserting that Rangel “lied on the record.”  Other topics included Rangel’s reference to Espaillat as a “trainee”, whether he will petition for re-election to the state senate, why he believes he could accomplish anything in a tea party-dominated House and a recent uptick in marijuana arrests.

Update #2 – Walrond:

For a first time candidate and political outsider, Michael Walrond appears to have a pretty firm grasp of the basics of running, promoting yourself and attacking your opponent.  Topics included Rangel’s record, his congressional censure, whether Walrond should attack more in debates, whether he’s a spoiler, what he thinks he could accomplish in a tea party-dominated House, his work in Harlem, lessons from the defeat of Eric Cantor and whether he’ll be a “loyal Democrat” if elected.

Rumblin’ With The Rev (Updated)

Congressman Charles B. Rangel, State Senator Adriano Espaillat and the Rev. Michael Walrond, candidates in the 13th Congressional District Democratic primary, joined the Rev. Al Sharpton this morning at the National Action Network’s House of Justice.

Congressman Rangel’s remark about Espaillat during a taped debate yesterday; “just what the heck has he done except say he’s a Dominican?”, has been a focus of attention.  Rev. Sharpton spoke about during his onstage remarks, and each candidate spoke about it with the press afterwards.

Update – Candidates & The Rev:

Here’s an in-depth look at their visit.

Candidate Q&A:

Following their onstage remarks, each of the candidates spoke with the press outside the the House of Justice.




Slugfest at St. Luke’s (Updated x 2)

The three Democratic candidates in the 13th Congressional slugged it out tonight in a debate sponsored by the Urban Justice Center Safety Net Project and hosted by St. Luke A.M.E. Church.

Opening Statements:

Here is Congressman Rangel’s unusual opening.

Update – Post-Debate Media Avails:

Following the debate, all three candidates spoke separately with the press.


Senator Espaillat began with criticism of Congressman Rangel’s opening statement and concluded with a comment about their personal interactions.  With a small twist at the end.


Congressman Rangel addressed whether he’s been “far more aggressive in this debate than [he] was before.”


Rev. Walrond began with the observation that the other candidates take him much more seriously than they did early in the race.

(The full debate video follows after the jump.) Continue reading Slugfest at St. Luke’s (Updated x 2)

Heating Up In Harlem’s 13th CD (Updated x 3)

The three Democratic candidates in the 13th congressional district met Thursday evening for their first debate.  Hosted by Abyssinian Bapist Church, the debate featured polite, but at times intense, jousting among Congressman Charles B. Rangel, State Senator Adriano Espaillat and the Rev. Michael Walrond.

A core part of Congressman Rangel’s argument for reelection is his assertion that he alone among the three is capable of providing meaningful assistance to President Obama in the last two years of Obama’s term.  Rangel, a 44 year incumbent, has lost a significant amount of Washington clout due to his political and legal troubles in the last several years. Both of his opponents dismiss the notion of Rangel now having a meaningful relationship with the president.

To begin our coverage, here are our post-debate conversations with all three candidates.    You’ll also hear Capital New York’s Azi Paybarah on these clips (he’s the voice asking the good questions.)

Adriano Espaillat:

Charles Rangel:

Michael Walrond:

Continue reading Heating Up In Harlem’s 13th CD (Updated x 3)

Walrond Announces

Tonight the Rev. Michael Walrond formally announced his candidacy for congress, running in the 13th congressional district against Charles Rangel and, presumably, Adriano Espaillat.  The pastor of Harlem’s First Corinthian Baptist Church and a part of the Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network, Walrond is a well-established member of the Harlem community but a first time candidate.

Following his well organized and energetic announcement, Walrond answered questions from the press.  Topics included his relationship with the current House member from the district, Charles Rangel, his electoral chances and the prospect that he could be a spoiler in a Rangel/Espaillat rematch, his top issues and whether he will invite Rangel and Espaillat to speak to his congregation.  Here is his full press Q&A.

Walrond Running?

Tonight the Rev. Michael Walrond, pastor of Harlem’s First Corinthian Baptist Church and an active member of the Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network, is expected to formally announce his candidacy for the congressional seat currently held by Charles Rangel.  At a December 7th National Action Network event featuring heavy press coverage of Mayor-elect de Blasio and his intended police commissioner Bill Bratton, Sharpton teasingly suggested that Walrond announce his candidacy on the spot.  Watch.