Will Maria Passanante-Derr help Quinn win?

At a certain point in every election it simply comes down to math. Getting more voters out for your candidate can make the critical difference. It no longer matters about positions, character, ideology or even who looks better. Polls can tell you where the electorate is, but the experts watch to which candidate the undecided voters are deciding for in the last two weeks.

In a three-way race, the plurality usually matters, not the majority. This year in the third district, there might be more anti-Quinn voters than those who support her, but Quinn could still win by dividing the opposition.

Without even looking at the merits of the challengers, many West Side election watchers feel that Yetta Kurland has run a more energetic campaign, attracted more support and has a better chance -- actually the only chance -- to defeat Christine Quinn. There is indeed sufficient anger at Quinn to beat her. But if the opposition is divided, Quinn could still win.(More after the jump)

Quinn Challenger Passannante-Derr caught in Endorsement Lie

Maria Passannante Derr, one of two challengers to Christine Quinn's bid for re-election, came under fire yesterday for an apparent false claim of being endorsed by the New York League of Humane Voters.

The animal rights group never endorsed Ms. Passannante-Derr. They had endorsed Quinn's other challenger, Yetta Kurland, according to its website.

An email sent Thursday from the Passannante-Derr campaign claimed, "The League of Humane Voters of NYC Endorses Maria" and "We endorse Maria Passannante Derr as our candidate for NYC Council Third District."A banner was displayed on the Passannante-Derr website making the same claim. See here and here.

The New York League of Humane Voters lists Yetta Kurland as its endorsed candidate for the City Council Third District primary race. The organization had endorsed Ms. Kurland as far back as October 2008, and it's Executive Director, John Phillips, has been seen frequently with Ms. Kurland on the campaign trail.

A representative from the Passannante-Derr campaign stated that the discrepancy was "with the Kurland campaign," but that they would look into the matter and call back. No further callbacks were received and the campaign failed to respond to a follow-up email. No corrections have been issued.

Apparently this is not the first time that Ms. Passannante-Derr has made claims of endorsements that could not be supported. A mailing from the McManus Democratic Club (see here) in December 2008 stated that Ms. Passannante Derr was "Endorsed by the McManus Democratic Association." However the McManus Club denied this in an article in the Soho Journal (commonly used as a mouthpiece for McManus) and Quinn's website lists McManus as having endorsed her. (why anyone would even want the McManus Club endorsement is another discussion altogether).

Quinn avoids more debates; Questions linger on The Villager debate/debacle


City Council Debate, 3rd District
Sponsored by The Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation
Hudson Guild Elliot Center (441 West 26th Street)
September 8th at 6:30 PM
Yetta Kurland - to attend
Maria Passanante Derr - to attend
Quinn - will not show

Just like Quinn. In a December 2002 press conference opposing the Jets Stadium and Olympics, Christine Quinn cowered inside City Hall, afraid to come out and stand with her constituents from Chelsea and Clinton. In 2009, she is avoiding debate scenarios that she can't control. (more after the jump)

Quinn uses City Employees for her campaign

Speaker Quinn Pads Campaign Staff with Council Staffers
Village Voice
By Elizabeth Dwoskin
Thursday, Aug. 20 2009

In Mid-July, Jan Messerschmidt, the manager of City Council Speaker Christine Quinn's re-election campaign, sent out a letter to supporters. In just over a month, Messerschmidt bragged, the campaign's "more than 90 volunteers" had logged thousands of door-to-door man hours, garnering enough signatures to put Quinn on the ballot in District 3, which spans from Soho to Hell's Kitchen.

It turns out that many in Quinn's touted group of dedicated volunteers have a strong personal interest in her being reelected -- indeed, their jobs may rely on it. According to documents the Voice has obtained, thirty-one of the "more than 90" volunteers are current staff members on the City Council,.

This is campaign season, after all. And with campaigns come the time-honored ritual of the counsel staffer stumping for the boss... (more after the jump)

Quinn squirms as Yetta Kurland makes debate points

Clip provided by the Yetta Kurland campaign. Watch Chris Quinn cringe when confronted with some awful truths. The clip is just selected portions of the debate and does not cover every topic we think important. While this represents the point of view of the Kurland campaign, it is certainly a departure from the pro-Quinn biased coverage coming from the Villager/Gay City News.

Quinn's Lies of Debates Past

1998 debate Question: Has anyone taken any campaign contributions from developers (corrected to include landlords and real estate organizations), and would you do so in the future?

Quinn: No I haven't and no, I won't.

What a liar! Quinn had already started to take money from landlords and within two years was taking money from developers under the table while purporting to represent the community in negotiations with that landlord. When discovered and confronted, she lied about the contribution that was part of the public record. This particular scam also included former Chelsea District Leader Kathy Kinsella and Assembly Member Dick Gottfried's Chief of Staff Wendy Paster.

Christine Quinn made her promise to never take landlord/developer campaign contribution at a debate in an open Special Election to replace Tom Duane who had recently been elected to the NYS Senate.

Huffington Post/City Hall cover Quinn Debate Fiasco

Public, Press Barred From Debate For Quinn Seat
Unannounced ticket requirement leaves voters and reporters on the street
Andrew J. Hawkins
City Hall News/Huffington Post

How could a political event in the West Village not spur a little civil unrest?

The hotly anticipated debate between Council Speaker Christine Quinn and her opponents, Yetta Kurland and Maria Passannante-Derr, started out inauspiciously enough, with hundreds of attendees streaming into the New York University building on West Fourth Street.

But the scene soon turned chaotic after NYU security closed the doors, barring dozens of people in line from entry, including several credentialed members of the press. (more after the jump)

Term Limits, Slush Fund Debated by Quinn, Kurland and Passannante-Derr

From Bloomberg Watch, by Mike Dang

About an hour or so before the Council District 3 debate between Yetta Kurland, Maria Passannante-Derr and incumbent Christine Quinn was supposed to begin, City Hall News reporter Andrew Hawkins found himself being prevented from entering the building. The press, we were told, were not being accommodated in any way, and would have to wait in line for a chance at receiving a ticket for entry to the debate hosted by The Villager and Gay City News at NYU.

Mr. Hawkins wasn’t alone. Public Advocate contender Norman Siegel was also prevented from witnessing the debate. They would have had to arrive several hours prior to guarantee themselves a ticket in — that is, if they had arrived before the crowd of Quinn campaign staffers and supporters who had come in droves to make sure they would gain entry and others would not. Candidate Passannante-Derr made sure to note this when the debate began, observing that her supporters were barred from attending because Quinn’s paid staffers had overwhelmed the line. (more after the jump)

Villager/Chelsea Now shuts media & public out of Quinn debate

video by Louis Flores

An over-flow crowd formed outside one of NYU's buildings. Because the venue was so small, and only 5 press passes were issued to cover the re-election of the Speaker of the City Council (this, in a city of over 8 million people), there were more interested people who wanted to get in -- but who were turned away by NYU. At least 2 journalists with media credentials, at least one other freelance reporter, and a long line of undecided voters of Hells Kitchen, Chelsea, and the West Village look on in complete helplessness as NYU officials turned them away. (more after the jump)

Villager & NYU close media out of 3rd District debate

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