The Bronx Democratic Party is now united behind Bill de Blasio’s campaign for mayor, but Republican Joe Lhota is not the only pol lying in the cross hairs of the Democratic machine.
Independence Party candidate Adoflo Carrión Jr., the former two-term Bronx borough president, left the Democratic Party last year to run as an independent for mayor. And now, he’s a persona non grata to his successor, Bronx Borough President Ruben Díaz Jr.
“I don’t know what his strategy is,” Mr. Díaz told Politicker last night at a de Blasio endorsement event when asked for his thoughts on the Carrión campaign.
Rather than try to rationalize a path to victory for Mr. Carrión–Mr. Díaz believes none exists–he tore into what he described as an act of political betrayal.
“The one thing we hate the most is when somebody abandons us,” said Mr. Díaz. “Especially when we gave that individual the opportunities he’s had in life, in the party, whether he ran for City Council, whether he ran for borough president, when he went to the White House, it was Democrats that offered him that opportunity.”
“And everything he’s going to talk about to you guys, his own platform was because of the opportunity that was offered to him by the Democratic Party. So to abandon us for his own political and personal gain is something we won’t forget and we’re gonna make him pay for it at the ballot box,” he added.
The two Bronx pols were never close, but their relationship turned cold when Mr. Carrión announced last year that he would be leaving the Democratic Party in a failed attempt to get himself on the ballot in the less competitive Republican mayoral primary.
Reached for a response, Mr. Carrión argued his successor had a mistaken view of how he rose in Bronx politics.
“Sadly, Mr. Diaz does not understand the trajectory of a real professional career,” Mr. Carrión charged. “I ran for NYC Council in 1997 after a career as a teacher, city planner, small business owner, district manager of a community board, and having held a number of civic leadership roles.”
“I ran against a machine that initially resisted my candidacy and my independence,” he added. “As Bronx Borough President, I worked against a tide of resistance that my friends and former colleagues are all too familiar with.”