At a senior center off Grand Street, some old people doing tai chi and waiting for lunch were visited by Robert Morgenthau, Sheldon Silver, Cy Vance and Alan Gerson.
Gerson, a Democratic Council incumbent facing a competitive primary, at one point was heard telling one senior, “I’ll get re-elected, then I’ll get married.”
Gerson, who lives at home with his parents, repeated the line to me, and said, “My mother is still hoping.”
Silver, the powerful Assembly speaker, who has the luxury of approaching today as a pure spectator, said turnout may be light because there’s not much of a mayoral primary to speak of. (Expectations are that Bill Thompson will kill, then be killed.) When I asked if the issue of term-limits extension would drive some indignant voters to the polls to express their displeasure–as a number of Council challengers are hoping–Silver said probably not.
“I don’t think it’s significant,” he said. I haven’t heard that on the streets. I think last April, May, June, there was more of that sentiment.”
The other main factor in the elections is the Working Families Party, whose Get Out the Vote operation is being tested today (along with their ability to account accurately for it.)
Silver paid respect to the W.F.P., telling me, “I think they’re good at organizing voters and constituents. There’s no question they have issues. They’ve stood with their issues and they’ve done a good job.”
Morgenthau, who is retiring after running the Manhattan district attorney’s office for 34 years, told me “it feels good” not being on the ballot. When I asked him about the Working Families Party, which is not supporting his hand-chosen successor for district attorney, Vance, he deadpanned, “Who are they?”
People around us starting laughing, and I felt bad, so I began explaining, when I realized that he was smiling and the laughter was directed at me.
On our way out of the senior center, all four men surrounded one woman who was walking into the building, politely reminding her to vote.