Mark-Viverito chosen NYC Council speaker

January 8, 2014 Associated Press
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Mayor Bill de Blasio ally Melissa Mark-Viverito has been elected as New York City council speaker.

Mark-Viverito, a Democrat who represents East Harlem, defeated Manhattan Councilman Dan Garodnick on Wednesday.

Garodnick abandoned his bid in the moments before the City Council’s vote and threw his support behind Mark-Viverito.

Mark-Viverito is one of the most liberal members of the council and was an early supporter of de Blasio’s mayoral bid.

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De Blasio took the unusual step in recent weeks of injecting himself into the speaker race, calling council members to lobby on his candidate’s behalf.

The speaker is considered the second-most powerful post in city government and has the ability to speed up or obstruct the mayor’s agenda.

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