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04/19/2007


Christine Quinn Leads in New NYC Mayoral Poll

A new poll from Quinnipiac University released today shows New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn leading among Democrats for next year's mayoral race, CNN reports:

QuinnQuinn, who has yet to announce an official bid but is expected to run, has the support of 32% of registered Democrats in the potentially crowded primary, while other likely candidates fall behind with 10% or less of the vote...

...Former City Comptroller Bill Thompson (who has already launched his mayoral bid) comes in second with 10%, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio has 9%; City Comptroller John Liu collects 5%, and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer comes in with 4%, according to the survey. The poll was conducted, however, before Stringer dropped out of the running and decided to run for city comptroller.

Two Republican candidates were included in the polling but would not have much of a chance against a Democrat:

Two speculated GOP contenders were included in the poll: Metropolitan Transportation Authority Chair and CEO Joseph Lhota and former Bronx Borough President Adolfo Carrion. Lhota would lose to an unnamed Democratic candidate 60% to 9%, and Carrion would be defeated 62% to 11%, according to the survey.

Most polled also want NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a supporter of Quinn, to keep his money out of the race.


Citing Climate Change And Equality, Bloomberg Backs Obama

ObamaBloomie

Though Mike Bloomberg last month said he's "more in sync" with President Obama, the politically independent New York City mayor did not endorse the commander-in-chief for reelection. But he did today, particularly because of the President's support of science showing climate change as well as Obama's support for marriage equality.

In an op-ed called " A Vote for a President to Lead on Climate Change" and published at Bloomberg View, a site managed by the company he created before entering politics, Bloomberg writes, "The devastation that Hurricane Sandy brought to New York City and much of the Northeast -- in lost lives, lost homes and lost business -- brought the stakes of Tuesday’s presidential election into sharp relief."

Our climate is changing. And while the increase in extreme weather we have experienced in New York City and around the world may or may not be the result of it, the risk that it might be -- given this week’s devastation -- should compel all elected leaders to take immediate action.

Mr. Romney, says Bloomberg, does not have political convictions enough to take the lead during such crises and though he once supported climate change science, the GOP presidential candidate's move to the right turned off the billionaire businessman. "[Romney] has reversed course, abandoning the very cap-and-trade program he once supported," writes the mayor. "This issue is too important. We need determined leadership at the national level to move the nation and the world forward."

Marriage Equality's shout-out comes toward the end of the piece, as Bloomberg lays out the presidential candidates' divergent politics:

One believes a woman’s right to choose should be protected for future generations; one does not. That difference, given the likelihood of Supreme Court vacancies, weighs heavily on my decision.

One recognizes marriage equality as consistent with America’s march of freedom; one does not. I want our president to be on the right side of history.

One sees climate change as an urgent problem that threatens our planet; one does not. I want our president to place scientific evidence and risk management above electoral politics.

Bloomberg signs off by saying he's voting for Obama because the president "can fulfill the hope he inspired four years ago and lead our country toward a better future for my children and yours".

President Obama has already released a statement thanking Bloomberg for his support. In addition to praising the mayor's business record and bipartisan approach to politics, Obama also reassured New Yorkers that he's still standing by our side: "[Bloomberg] has my continued commitment that this country will stand by New York in its time of need. And New Yorkers have my word that we will recover, we will rebuild, and we will come back stronger."

Read the entire letter AFTER THE JUMP.

Continue reading "Citing Climate Change And Equality, Bloomberg Backs Obama" »


Mike Bloomberg Stumps For Marriage Equality In Baltimore

BloombergBaltimore

New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg jetted to Baltimore on Friday to help Gov. Martin O'Malley and Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake campaign for marriage equality there.

Bloomberg previously announced a $250,000 personal donation to the pro-equality movement and last Thursday co-wrote an op-ed with O'Malley addressing the issue.

"The way forward is always found through greater respect for the equal rights and dignity of all. And it is this belief in treating everyone equally under the law that has led to the surge in momentum in favor of Question 6," they wrote of the ballot measure that if approved would let same-sex couples tie the knot.

During his appearance in Baltimore on Friday, Bloomberg described marriage equality as both a civil rights issue and as an example of smart economics.

"Every wedding is a celebration that generates revenues for our restaurants and banquet halls, caterers and other small businesses," said the mayor. "In fact, we've calculated that same-sex marriage has generated more than $259 million in economic activity in our city in the last twelve months."

Meanwhile, polls once showed marriage equality winning by a wide margin in next month's vote, but the Baltimore Sun reports that right-wing efforts to target religious African-American voters are swinging votes toward "no": "A month ago, the same-sex marriage question was ahead by 10 percentage points — 49 percent to 39 percent — in an earlier Sun poll. The contest is now a dead heat in part because some African-Americans who supported the measure or were undecided are now saying no."

From that paper's report, filed last night:

The numbers have moved amid television and radio commercials from the Maryland Marriage Alliance, which opposes same-sex marriage, and stepped-up efforts by pastors preaching against Question 6.

Much of the advertising is focused on African-American voters, a bloc that traditionally opposed same-sex marriage but had been warming to the idea. In late September, the Sun poll showed a majority of blacks in favor of Question 6 — evidently a high-water mark.

This time, the poll found 50 percent of black voters oppose the measure and 42 percent support it.

Yvonne Johnson, 65, of Prince George's County is among those who have decided to vote against legalization of same-sex marriage. "I'm not against gay people, she said. "I just don't think they should change what is in the Bible."

Perhaps it's time for some pro-equality preachers to stand up and be heard?

[Image via WBAL-TV.]


NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg Announces $500K Matching Donation for Maine, Minnesota and Washington Gay Marriage Battles

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg today announced that he's promised a total of $500,000 in matching challenge donations for the next five days to battles for marriage equality in Washington and Maine and against the anti-gay marriage amendment in Minnesota aimed at raising $1 million for the campaigns:

BloombergThe Mayor pledged $250,000 to Washington United for Marriage, $125,000 to Mainers United for Marriage and $125,000 to Minnesotans United for All Families. The pledges will help each group raise additional money by matching new contributions made in the homestretch of the campaign. If the challenge is successful, it will raise $1 million for the cause of marriage equality in the three states.

“Government has no business denying marriage licenses to a whole class of couples in Maine, Minnesota, Washington or anywhere else,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “The 14th Amendment guarantees us all equal protection under the law, and marriage equality is the next big step in America’s long march of freedom. The barriers to it are bound to fall; the question is not if but when. I was proud to help support the successful effort to achieve marriage equality in New York State, and I’m proud to stand with supporters of marriage equality around the country this November.”

Visit Mainers United here, Minnesotans United for All Families here, and Washington United for Marriage here to pledge donations.

Las week, Bloomberg announced that he had made a personal donation of $250,000 to Marylanders for Marriage Equality, which you can visit here.


Bloomberg Says He's 'More In Sync' With Obama

BloombergobamaNew York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg hasn't made an endorsement in the 2012 presidential election, but told the New York Times he's "more in sync" with President Obama on matters like marriage equality and abortion. He also told the paper that he thinks Vice President Joe Biden deserves more credit than Obama on pushing the administration toward supporting gay marriage.

Though he is more likely to agree with Mr. Obama than with Mr. Romney — on same-sex marriage, climate change and abortion rights — he expressed disappointment with the president’s leadership.

“I am more in sync with President Obama’s views on social issues,” he said. “I will say that I don’t see as much action as I would like, and it’s nice to be on the side that I think you should be on, but unless you do something, so what?”

Mr. Bloomberg was asked how he could make that criticism given the president’s announcement last spring that he supported same-sex marriage.

“Let’s get serious here: it was Joe Biden that forced that issue,” he said, referring to the vice president’s surprise remarks backing same-sex nuptials that were credited with forcing Mr. Obama to follow. “Some people say he just goes off; I would say he’s a principled guy.”

Bloomberg's interview comes as the billionaire prepares his post-mayoral legacy: last week he announced the formation of Independence USA PAC, a super PAC that will only support candidates who believe in gun control, education reform and marriage equality.


NYC Mayor Bloomberg's New Super PAC Backs Marriage Equality

Bloombergpride

New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg today announced the formation of a new super PAC, Independence USA PAC, through which he's prepared to spend up to $15 million between now and election day on campaigns large and small. He will support local, congressional and state candidates from any party, he says, but they must support three things: marriage equality, stricter gun laws and education reform.

One anonymous Bloomberg official said, "This spending sends a clear message that the mayor intends to keep his wallet open after he leaves office to influence national policy around issues like guns, education and marriage equality." And according to the New York Times, Bloomberg's already supporting a number of candidates.

Among those whom Mr. Bloomberg will support are former Gov. Angus King, an independent running for the United States Senate in Maine; State Senator Gloria Negrete McLeod, who is challenging a fellow Democrat, Representative Joe Baca of California, who the mayor believes has been weak on gun-control; and Representative Bob Dold, a Republican from Illinois who has backed gun-control measures.

Bloomberg is also looking into candidates in California, Louisiana, and is "likely" to support the Washington and Maine gay marriage ballot battles, according to the paper.


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