State Senator Malcolm Smith may be facing federal corruption charges, but LL Cool J is cool with it.
The 90s heart-throb, rapper and star of NCIS: Los Angeles returned to his childhood neighborhood in southeast Queens yesterday to co-host a basketball tournament with the indicted pol, who recently pleaded not-guilty to federal corruption charges for allegedly orchestrating an elaborate scheme to get himself elected mayor.
“The beauty about the American system is that you’re innocent ’til proven guilty,” the rapper told Politicker as he greeted excited fans at the annual basketball event when asked about the scandal.
Playing the Field
New York City’s last two mayors each left an indelible mark on the city. Rudy Giuliani’s eight years are remembered for his crime crackdown, the Disneyfication of Times Square and millions weeping as one after the worst terrorist attack in U.S. history. Mike Bloomberg’s town is an emerging tech hub, dotted with modern public spaces and glass towers, and packed with tourists and ex-smokers riding their bikes to Whole Foods. All that, plus a yogurt store on every block, $4,500 one-bedroom apartments in once-forsaken Brooklyn neighborhoods and a growing class divide that makes Downton Abbey look like a socialist commune. On the positive side: there’s still no Walmart here.
Among all public officials, the mayor is the one who shapes our day-to-day lives the most: not just our subways, schools and streets, but our ethos and identity as a city. This mayoral election, New York City’s first with no incumbent in more than a decade, has attracted a slew of hopefuls eager to remake the city in their own images. And what images they are. Assembled at the starting line are a quartet of formidable Democrats, alongside a 9/11 conspiracy theorist, a man with his own catchphrase and action figure, and a vibrator-wielding, marijuana smoking, alligator-hugging YouTube ranter.
The Republican redistricting plan just passed the Republican-controlled State Senate, 35-24, with the four Independent Democrats throwing their support behind the bill.
The bill’s sponsor, John Bonacic, said before the vote that he wasn’t “playing the blame game” but wanted to note “you guys [Democrats] had opportunities” to pass similar legislaiton when they Read More
Malcolm Smith’s message of the week seems to capture the mood in Albany. Read More
When Eliot Spitzer took the oath of office on the first day of January 2007, he promised a new day in New York politics. ”This election was not about electing one person as governor,” Mr. Spitzer said.
How right he was!
When Client Number Nine resigned in March of 2008, he ceded the state to Read More
I’m waiting for State Senator Bill Perkin’s press conference at 250 Broadway right now, and spotted this sign on State Senator Malcolm Smith’s door, saying the theme of the week is “strength through struggle.”
Wonder how that theme is going over on the second floor of the capitol in Albany right now. Read More
Facing increasing criticism for selecting a politically-connected bidder to develop slot machines at the Aqueduct race track, Governor Paterson released a statement Thursday afternoon stressing that legislative leaders had agreed on the choice.
The statement appeared to be a riposte at Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, who Friday stated a list of conditions (and sent Read More
ALBANY—John Sampson thinks, not unreasonably, that the State Senate needs a new look.
“We need to come out of the box in January and start to really pass some progressive and positive legislation because people have one characterization of us,” Sampson, the leader of the chamber’s Democratic conference, told reporters during an informal chat in Read More
ALBANY—The day after David Paterson gives his State of the State address, Senate Democratic Leader John Sampson will be in Manhattan for “cocktails and conversation” at a $5,000-a-head event.
That’s a pretty high dollar figure; for context, David Paterson and Andrew Cuomo each asked for $1,000 a head at their December events and Read More
There were 1,000 people in attendance at Andrew Cuomo’s birthday fund-raiser last night–even David Paterson, a prospective political adversary, dropped in–mingling with the attorney general and enjoying a dinner of cucumber salad, beef and vegetables.
Like David Paterson’s holiday fund-raiser last week, the stalwarts of Albany’s lobbying community showed up–Paul Tokasz, Read More