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New York City - Vote Today!! Comptroller, Public advocate Run-offs Too Close to Call

Published on: September 29, 2009 07:59 AM
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run1New York City - Today, Tuesday, September 29, 2009 is Election Day in New York City. There is a run-off election for Public Advocate, and NYC Comptroller.

For once, the pollsters are stumped. They have no idea who will win Tuesday’s run-off elections, which will essentially decide the races for city comptroller and public advocate.

Turnout will be so low, they say, that their phone surveys—which show John Liu leading David Yassky by a few percentage points in the comptroller contest, and Bill de Blasio and Mark Green in a dead heat for public advocate—can’t predict the results.

Experts say the winners will be determined not by how people vote, but by which people vote.

“Turnout is going to be very low, so the premium is on organization, endorsements, and the ability of each side to get a few votes out,” said Lee Miringoff, director of the Marist College Poll. “It’s not an easy sell when you don’t have a marquee race like for mayor. These are lesser-known offices and not marquee names.”

Both comptroller candidates and Mr. de Blasio are City Council members who forsook re-election campaigns to instead seek higher office. Mr. Green was public advocate from 1994 through 2001 and is trying to return to that post, which he left because of term limits. Because the city’s electorate is solidly Democratic and the Republicans are not fielding strong candidates in either race, the run-off will determine who assumes the seats in January.

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If Mr. Liu wins, he will become the highest-ranking Asian-American elected official east of the West Coast. His candidacy drew a large turnout of Asian-American voters in the Democratic primary, but he would not have finished first without strong support from other minority voters. Black and Latino voters who came to the polls on Sept. 15 to vote for a City Council candidate or for mayoral candidate William Thompson also cast votes for Mr. Liu, who was allied with those candidates.

Mr. Yassky, meanwhile, benefited from enhanced turnout in Manhattan for a contested primary for district attorney. Voters from the borough are largely white, liberal and Jewish, like Mr. Yassky.

For both candidates, the run-off presents a different set of circumstances.
“Asians who came out to vote for Liu are going to come out [again Tuesday], but what about everyone else? There are no black or Hispanic candidates,” noted Jerry Skurnik, a partner in political consulting firm Prime NY. “Can his organization, the Working Families Party, the unions and political clubs supporting him pull out those votes again?”

Mr. Yassky, of Brooklyn, has less institutional support than Liu and is relying more on individually motivated voters who share his politics and demographics. “For Yassky, will white Jewish liberals come out to vote again without [the draw of] a Manhattan district attorney race, or a mayoral race?

To some extent, the same calculus applies in the public advocate run-off. Mr. de Blasio, of Brooklyn, has many of the same institutional supporters as Mr. Liu, while Mr. Green’s voters are similar to Mr. Yassky’s. The major difference is that Mr. Green has a longer history in city politics than Mr. Yassky and is better-known to voters. Mr. Yassky relies more on his campaign organization that Mr. Green does.

“I don’t think anyone has any real idea what the turnout’s going to be, and what the ethnic and gender and geographic breakdown’s going to be,” said Mr. Skurnik.

The turnout percentage citywide barely cracked double figures on Sept. 15 and it could drop into single digits on Tuesday. “It’s a sleeper runoff,” Mr. Miringoff said. “You’re talking about hard-core Democrats voting at this point.”

The winner, he joked, could come down to this: “Who has the largest family of all the candidates?”

The comptroller candidates are seeking the seat held for the last eight years by Mr. Thompson, while the public advocate hopefuls are trying to succeed Betsy Gotbaum. Mr. Thompson and Ms. Gotbaum decided not to run for a third and final term.

Both offices serve as a check on the mayor, and while the public advocate is second in line to the mayoralty, the comptroller commands a far larger staff and has vast responsibilities to watch over the city’s finances and public pension funds. The public advocate is an ombudsman of sorts, can introduce bills and presides over City Council meetings, but can only vote to break ties in the council.



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Read Comments (17)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Sep 29, 2009 at 08:12 AM Anonymous Says:

The Queens Courier reports that Satmar is supporting John Liu for Comptroller: " Brooklyn Satmar community leaders including: President of the United Talmudical Academy of Borough Park Rabbi Aron Welz ; Rabbi Bernard Freilich, Chaim Goldberger, Rabbi Naftula Klagsbraun and Rabbi Mair Meisels of Borough Park; UJcare’s Gary Schlesinger; Central United Talmudical Academy’s Rabbi Moishe Indig of Williamsburg; Rabbi Leib Glanz, Moshe Hoffman, Joel Lefkowitz, Rabbi Elozer Porgess and Max Strauss of Williamsburg have endorsed John Liu for Comptroller "

2

 Sep 29, 2009 at 08:09 AM Anonymous Says:

Today's New York Times says the following: " but in recent days, Mr. Liu has been endorsed by Mr. Hikind and Satmar leaders in the Brooklyn neighborhoods of Williamsburg and Borough Park "

3

 Sep 29, 2009 at 09:43 AM Anonymous Says:

Which Satmar ?

4

 Sep 29, 2009 at 09:13 AM Anonymous Says:

I'm holding my nose & voting for Yassky. Not because I like him, but I have to pray that in the end, he will remember his people & help get vouchers for yeshiva students. I don't understand WHY WB & Satmar endorse Lui. Does anyone know before I cast my vote?

5

 Sep 29, 2009 at 10:08 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #4  
Anonymous Says:

I'm holding my nose & voting for Yassky. Not because I like him, but I have to pray that in the end, he will remember his people & help get vouchers for yeshiva students. I don't understand WHY WB & Satmar endorse Lui. Does anyone know before I cast my vote?

The Comptroller has nothing to do with vouchers. That's the Mayor, who has already shown his true colors and will probably cut the budget against Yeshivas. Both Liu and de Blasio (the Public Advocate candidate), will serve the needs of the frum community, wherever possible. They're both good guys for us.

6

 Sep 29, 2009 at 11:03 AM Curious Says:

What about the fact that John Liu voted in favor of a law by Charles Barron to rename a street after known anti-semite Sonny Carson. Does that bother you?

7

 Sep 29, 2009 at 11:00 AM shimon Says:

all 4 candidates are not good both Liu and Yassky have integrity problems. Green and Deblasio are running for an office that is a political joke. I will not vote for these reasons.

8

 Sep 29, 2009 at 10:51 AM community first Says:

Askonim from across the spectrum are supporting the candidacy of David Yassky.I’m not sure how accurate or reputable the “Queens courier” is. what
we know for sure is- Abe Biderman, one of our most respected Askonim is supporting David Yassky. As a former NYC finance commissioner he is probably the most knowledgeable Askan on the importance and impact of the Comptrollers office on our community. If he is supporting Yassky then you can rest assured that its good for our community to support him also.
Everything else is unfortunately the usual political split that the 2 Williamsburgs have come to stand for.
Anonomous if what Im writing bothers you maybe its because your a Liu operative and really dont have the best interests of our community in mind.
As for Dov Hikind not supporting Yassky,read above.

9

 Sep 29, 2009 at 11:24 AM Anonymous Says:

Yassky was exceptional nice to the Jewish community in city council position, why should yidden vote for his opponent?

10

 Sep 29, 2009 at 11:45 AM Velvel Says:

I'm not impressed with what Abe Biderman says one way or another.

11

 Sep 29, 2009 at 12:06 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #8  
community first Says:

Askonim from across the spectrum are supporting the candidacy of David Yassky.I’m not sure how accurate or reputable the “Queens courier” is. what
we know for sure is- Abe Biderman, one of our most respected Askonim is supporting David Yassky. As a former NYC finance commissioner he is probably the most knowledgeable Askan on the importance and impact of the Comptrollers office on our community. If he is supporting Yassky then you can rest assured that its good for our community to support him also.
Everything else is unfortunately the usual political split that the 2 Williamsburgs have come to stand for.
Anonomous if what Im writing bothers you maybe its because your a Liu operative and really dont have the best interests of our community in mind.
As for Dov Hikind not supporting Yassky,read above.

I'm not anyone's operative, you can vote as you please. However, I make decisions based upon first-hand knowledge, as opposed to "askonim" or elected officials telling me what to do.

12

 Sep 29, 2009 at 12:18 PM Anonymous Says:

Abe Biderman is an ehrlicher askan with no personal agenda. If he feels Yassky is the man to vote for, then Vote Yassky. If we do not vote for Klall Yisroel's best interest, who will. Enough personal agendas at the expense of the Klall.

13

 Sep 29, 2009 at 12:19 PM Anonymous Says:

Yassky used to be a double crosser always, he was busy running for congress, busy running for DA, and gave a little time for his Jewish District.
The Issue of NYCHA housing he failed, 421-A tax abatement he voted to stop.
He never fight publicly like DeBlasio, or felder.

14

 Sep 29, 2009 at 02:24 PM UNBELEIVBLE Says:

I think that many org. are KOFFIE TOVAH,
David Yassky was extremely nice to the jewish community & delivered many good things,

its %100 wrong to endorse John Liu Just because you see that he will win,
& dont think that John Liu dont see that, he will get your vote now & turn around his back afterwards because he wont get your vote when he NEEDS it only when he will ANYWAY win, even though he will be good to you

PUT YOUR HEAD IN USE!!!!!!

15

 Sep 29, 2009 at 03:33 PM the record speaks for itself Says:

I am happy to see that the voters are engaged in the process. Voting is the most important thing and it is refreshing to see the debate.. That being said, David Yassky has been a staunch supporter of our community. Its one thing to support one candidate or another if each has a positive track record of achievement for our community. In this case Liu has been a non existent official as far as we are concerned. David Yassky has been helpful , responsive and engaged on many of our issues. I dont see how we can support Liu. Hid record on issues that effect us is negligable. He didnt support Priority 7 yet YASSKY WAS ON THE STEPS OF CITY WITH ALL OF OUR ASKONIM INCLUDING NIEDERMAN AND GLANZ. LIU was M.I.A.
I'm not pro Yassky or anti Liu but lets call it the way it is. Yassky has been a good friend to us and at best Liu is a great unknown. Supporting Liu is simply a transparent way to try to ingratiate yourself and fails us every time. The record speaks for itself. Vote for Yassky.

16

 Sep 29, 2009 at 03:58 PM the charade must stop Says:

At this important juncture, it is inexplicable that we will shoot ourselves in the head and vote for an unknown candidate like John Liu. Sure I'm not happy about the term limit extension and I plan to let Mayor Bloomberg know that on election day but to take out your frustrations on David Yassky and vote for Liu who was endorsed by the working families party makes no sense. Yassky has been a real friend to our community in so many areas. John Liu has been a great nothing for us. I just dont see the merits of your argument. Our Mosdos need help, Yassky does not need an introduction to us. He was there on the pre school issue fighting the Bloomberg dept of health and winning and was there again on Priority 7.For years and years Yassky has been a friend. Ask real Askonim, they will tell you.
Was Liu ever there for us? Ever? We need a friend in the comptrollers office. Yassky is the right man for our community. I challenge Dov Hikind or the Glanz Satmar leadership to tell us why John Liu and not David Yassky?
The answer obviously lies in politics and if thats the case then please understand that the needs of the community must be put ahead of the needs of individuals. Its high time we all see through this selfish charade.
Vote for the right candidate not the guy who will speak at your breakfast or fundraiser.
Reports are that turnout is very very low- your vote counts- VOTE David Yassky. Polls close at 9:00 pm

17

 Sep 29, 2009 at 04:34 PM Just wondering Says:

Not to take away credit where credit is sue I did NOT review the record of neither politician.

What I am wondering is as follows:

Did Liu / Yassky vote for the property tax increase ?
Did Liu / Yassky vote for the parking ticket fee increase ?
Did Liu / Yassky vote for or against vouchers ?

Don't forget that Bloomy could only do what he wanted together with his cohorts on City Council who are in general made of the same scum.

If I correctly remember David Weprin (who also ran for comptroller) was only one of three council members who didn't bow to king Bloomy shenangians and our beloved mayor said that Weprin has a lot of CHUTZPA I think he is the only one who deserves a vote and unfortunately we cannot give ot to him.

Remember:

VOTE THE BUMS OUT. ALL OF THEM.

18

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