What's next for Liz, and assessing a Broooklyn mayor
Before Bill de Blasio ran ramshackle over opponent Joe Lhota in the race for NYC mayor, shop talk was understandably centered on which elected leaders in the city's Democratic corps were interested in a job with de Blasio's administration.
On the East Side of Manhattan, two Democratic insiders mentioned State Senator Liz Krueger was eyeing a spot, possibly in housing. However, when contacted, Krueger denied the suggestion. "I am not angling for any position with the presumed new Mayor," Krueger said. "There are rumors?but they are not being generated by me, nor by Mr. De Blasio. I look forward to assisting him in any way that I can to be a great mayor for our city."
An interesting response if one is prone to over-analyze, but it does lead to the question of who might fill her seat. Krueger was elected to the 28th District in 2002 and is currently the ranking Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee.
One name that's bandied about is 73rd District Assemblyman Dan Quart, who represents portions of the East Side in Manhattan. A source with knowledge told Our Town that Quart is interested in the 28th District seat should Krueger jump to a city government posting, but nothing solid is yet known.
What is known is that the nascent de Blasio administration is attractive to those in state government who want a part in enacting the lofty liberal and progressive ideas that got him elected by a 50-point margin. It remains to be seen who de Blasio will pick for his dream team, but the building of his administration will have implications for state politics.
Although Joe Lhota only won 24 percent of the citywide vote, he received the vast majority of votes on the Upper East Side, due in part to his opposition to the marine transfer station. Bill de Blasio, by contrast, has indicated that he'd let the project proceed. Ben Kallos, the neophyte City Council member-elect on the Upper East Side, previously told Our Town he'd stand up to whoever is elected mayor to stop the project.
Lhota also won pockets of downtown Manhattan, presumably from wealthier residents who work in the Financial District. De Blasio's plan to tax the rich to pay for universal kindergarten didn't sit well with many in New York's monied class, but his overall message resonated with an astounding 73 percent of city voters.
Lhota also took the borough of Staten Island, a significant chunk of southern Brooklyn and portions of Queens as well. In his generally gracious concession speech, Lhota did fire a parting shot at de Blasio; "We are five boroughs, but we are one city," said Lhota. "We are one people, and we want our city to move forward not backwards. And I do hope our mayor-elect understands this before it's too late."
As an interesting side note; de Blasio is the first mayor-elect from Brooklyn since Abraham Beame, who was elected in 1974 and left the office in 1977. The four mayors who came after Beame ? Edward Koch, David Dinkins, Rudolph Guiliani and Michael Bloomberg ? were all Manhattanites.
Beame presided over the city during the financial crisis in the mid-seventies when the city was almost forced to declare bankruptcy. He was also mayor during the infamous blackout of 1977. Here's to hoping the next Brooklynite mayor's legacy will be a little more illustrious.