Christine Quinn Wants to Talk About Historic Firsts, Not Second Chances

Christine Quinn on CNN this morning.

Christine Quinn on CNN this morning.

City Council Speaker Christine Quinn is getting sick of all the talk of second chances.

“You know there’s a been a lot of discussion about second chances in this race from former Congressman [Anthony] Weiner and the former governor [Eliot Spitzer],” said Ms. Quinn during an interview this morning on CNN with New Day’s Kate Bolduan.

Instead, she pointed to the fact that, if elected, she would become the city’s first female and first openly gay mayor.

“Let’s not have a conversation about second chances. Let’s have a conversation about the potential for first chances and history and what that could mean for the greater city in the world,” she said.

Ms. Quinn has thus far been reluctant to tout the historic nature of her campaign, choosing to focus on her legislative accomplishments as speaker and painting herself as the grown-up in the increasingly chaotic race.

But Ms. Quinn made it clear that the significance is not lost on her as she campaigns.

“I’m at a subway, and I have a mom brings a little girl up to me. And she bends down and says, ‘Sweetie, this is the woman I told you might be mayor,’” Ms. Quinn recalled. “You see something click in that little girl’s mind, and that’s exciting and it’s energizing, because what this city should be, is a place where everybody, regardless of their gender, sexual orientation, their race, their religion, can have their wildest dreams come true.”

Of course, the conversation also touched on Mr. Weiner, whose poll numbers have been tanking in light of revelations that he continued sexting long after his resignation. But despite calling him reckless, irresponsible and disqualified, Ms. Quinn again declined to call on Mr. Weiner to drop out of the race.

“Well, look, I think it’s a little cheeky, quite frankly, for opponents to tell each other to get in and out of races,” she said, arguing that the decision will be up to the voters on September 10th. She also avoided stepping into the brouhaha between Mr. Weiner and Mr. Spitzer, after the latter said yesterday he wouldn’t vote for the former.

“You know, I think whatever Eliot Spitzer says is not so relevant to the mayor’s race, at all,” said Ms. Quinn, again trying to pivot back to her record.

She also weighed in on Pope Francis’s recent comments encouraging society to be inclusive of homosexuality, saying the Pope “deserves so much credit for making those statements … There’s more we want, changes we want in the Catholic Church. It’s not everything. But that is a step forward.”