Mayor de Blasio is pushing harder on Council member to support Melissa Mark-Viverito for Speaker, ahead of Wednesday’s vote for City Council speaker, the Post reports.
According to Bronx Councilman Fernando Cabrera, Mayor de Blasio approached Bronx Democratic Chairman Carl Heastie on Friday for a meeting to peel votes away from Mark-Viverito’s main rival, Dan Garodnick. “The mayor is requesting to meet with The Bronx [council members],” Cabrera told The Post. “We haven’t decided if we’re going to or not. It’s going to come down to the wire.
“I’m just baffled. Why is the mayor getting involved so much in this thing? . . . Where’s the dignity and the pride?” he asked.
“I got a phone call from Mayor de Blasio,” recalled Councilman Inez Dickens of a conversation before the new year. “He simply asked me to vote for Melissa. There were no threats of any kind, but the fact that the mayor is calling you is intimidating.”
Ms. Mark-Viverito’s supporters accuse Mr. Garodnick of becoming a stalking horse for forces trying to stall Mr. de Blasio’s agenda, and they warn that by standing in the way of the person who would be the first Latina speaker — Ms. Mark-Viverito was born in Puerto Rico — he is stoking enmity, the NY Times reports.
As for Ms. Melissa Mark-Viverito, she remained confident when asked about her position yesterday. “Our coalition is solid,” she told John Kenny for NYTrue.com. “I look forward to the next three days and anxiously await the 8th of January.”
“Overwhelmingly the focus seems to be solely on my campaign and my candidacy and my character and no one else’s. So I think that, in and of itself, speaks for itself,” she said.
“This, with Melissa, is our Obama moment,” Rep. Jose Serrano, whose district covers parts of the Bronx, told reporters last week at a press conference by Latino leaders, in support of Ms. Viverito.
The Council is expected to vote for Speaker on January 8th, 2014.
(Jacob Kornbluh – YWN)