Azi, a few weeks ago, remarked on one of the odder uses of taxpayer money: bolstering incumbents with token challengers.
The Campaign Finance Board gave out $352,735 to five such incumbents yesterday.
Before Charles Barron, Andy Lanza, Mike Nelson, Jimmy Oddo and Larry Seabrook could get their money, however, each filed a statement of need. Below, in their own words, are some of their reasons.
Seabrook: “My general election opponent is…the nominee of both the Republican and Conservative parties and has the backing of Mayor Bloomberg’s high-spending mayoral re-election campaign.”
That opponent, George Rubin, hasn’t gotten a single dollar from Bloomberg or any other contributor. Seabrook raised $38,817 and got $66,405 yesterday. Maybe it’ll go to his consultant, Oliver Seabrook?
Lanza: “I seek election in a district where the voter registration is divided nearly evenly between Republicans and Democrats. It is important, as one of only three Republican n the City Council, that I am able to get my message out to voters.” Lanza got $78,577 yesterday in addition to the $46,582 he raised, all in to ward off Neil Schlanger, who banked $2,600.
Oddo: My opponent [in the previous race – corrected] “failed to qualify for matching fund[s] by falling one contributor shy of the required amount. It strikes me as odd that his family, friends and party…would have allowed this to take place. If there was a genuine intention to qualify, surely one person among these groups would have contributed the necessary nominal amount.”
Oddo raised $65,975 and got $71,003 yesterday. His opponent, David Ceder, has $7,445.