Flooding the steps of City Hall with dozens of supporters, Bill Thompson and his high-profile surrogates urged voters to reject the polls–and the candidate leading them– at a final get-out-the-vote rally this afternoon.
With less than 24 hours to go before the polls open, the campaigns are in final crunch mode, making their closing arguments and trying to ensure supporters turn out to the polls. And to maximize his time, Mr. Thompson is currently in the midst of his second 24-hour tour, which will keep him campaigning through the night.
“This is not a race about who’s on Twitter. This is not a race about hairdos. This is race about serious business,” said Bronx Borough President Rubén Díaz Jr., taking a dig at front-runner Bill de Blasio’s popular television ads featuring his famously afro-haired son. “This is a race about hard-working men and women of the City of New York who are unfortunately still struggling to make it by.”
Many of the people lining the steps were members of the city’s teachers’ union, which Mr. Thompson’s campaign hopes will help vault him into a probable run-off when the polls close tomorrow night. Joining them was the union’s president, Michael Mulgrew, Brooklyn Democratic Party boss Frank Seddio, former Bronx Borough President Freddy Ferrer and Assemblyman Dov Hikind.
“This city is at a major crossroads. It really is at a pivotal time,” Mr. Mulgrew told the crowd. “Income inequality has now grown to proportions we’ve never seen before … We are going to make sure this city–at this moment, at this pivotal moment–elects that man who not only has the experience and know-how, [but] the heart of the people–always, always has the heart of the people in all the decisions that he makes.”
Racing late into the rally to chants of “Thompson! Thompson!” the former comptroller wasted little time taking aim at Mr. de Blasio for his plan to raise taxes on the wealthy to fund universal pre-kindergarten. The plan, Mr. Thompson and other critics argue, is dead-on-arrival because Albany lawmakers are unlikely to pass a tax increase next year.
“Let’s be honest, we’re looking at others who are coming up with imaginary proposals. Who are out there promising the world to the people of the City of New York and we know it’s not serious,” Mr. Thompson declared. “We know that they’ll say anything to get a vote. They’ll say something at one time, change their opinion at another time when it’s politically-expedient.”
Although multiple Thompson boosters today urged voters to ignore the polls, which place Mr. de Blasio, the city’s public advocate, in a distant first and Mr. Thomson and Council Speaker Christine Quinn in a battle for second place, it was clear that Mr. Thompson had his focus set on Mr. de Blasio. Asked about his strategy, however, Mr. Thompson told Politicker that wasn’t the case.
“In the past, I’ve referenced Speaker Quinn and her undermining democracy in the City of New York by overturning term limits,” Mr. Thompson replied, insisting he still reserved plenty of wrath for Ms. Quinn.
As for Mr. de Blasio? “It is saying one thing and doing another, that’s why I reference Bill de Blasio.”