Corey Johnson was officially elected NYC Council Speaker on Wednesday, making him the second most powerful elected official in New York after Mayor Bill De Blasio.
Johnson, who becomes the city’s second most powerful elected official, is a Manhattan Democrat who is gay and HIV positive. He takes over from Melissa Mark-Viverito, who left the job because of term limits.
The newly elected leader is expected to pose a challenge to Mayor de Blasio — saying he won’t hesitate to push through bills over the mayor’s veto, which did not happen under his predecessor — although their progressive ideological views largely align.
Johnson laid out his agenda: “In an hourlong interview, Mr. Johnson, 35, a Manhattan councilman, laid out a wide-ranging policy agenda that included congestion pricing for for-hire vehicles, municipal single-payer health care, and increased funding for the city’s beleaguered subway system.”
A special congrats to Johnson from myself and Towleroad. Corey was this site’s political editor at one point, and traveled with me to the Democratic National Convention in 2008 and other events where we posted interviews with prominent lawmakers and public figures including Kirsten Gillibrand, Jared Polis, Gavin Newsom, Jerrold Nadler, Tammy Baldwin, and many others.
Here’s Johnson’s interview with Lady Gaga at the National Equality March in 2009.