Curtis Sliwa backing Capano for City Council
Radio star caps off week of big endorsements
As the petitioning process began in the race for the Bay Ridge City Council seat, a flurry of endorsements came in for candidates, including Republican Bob Capano, who has won the support of WABC radio personality Curtis Sliwa.
Sliwa, who is the founder of the Guardian Angels citizen patrol group and the chairman of the New York State Reform party, said Capano is an impressive candidate.
“When we looked at all of the candidates for this race, one candidate stood out as not being part of the status quo political establishment — Bob Capano. Unlike many of the others, who have only collected a salary on the taxpayers’ dime, Bob works in the real world managing a business,” Sliwa said, referring to the fact that Capano is the manager of a Gristedes supermarket on the Upper East Side.
“I have known Bob for many years and he does not care about political correctness, and will not be wined, dined and pocket lined by the political elites and special interests,” Sliwa added.
Capano vowed to fight for Reform Party principles. “For far too long our city and state have been under the thumb of the special interests; the political bosses, the lobbyists and the business- as-usual crowd, who place their interests and concerns before those of the voters and the taxpayers. It’s time this cynical system of government came to an end,” he said.
Capano is one of three Republicans running for the seat in the 43rd Council District. In addition to Bay Ridge, the council district also covers Dyker Heights and parts of Bensonhurst and Bath Beach. Liam McCabe and John Quaglione are also running. The three men will face each other in a Republican primary on Sept. 12.
There are four Democrats running for the council seat: Justin Brannan, Kevin Peter Carroll, Rev. Khader El-Yateem and Nancy Tong. Like the Republican contest, the Democratic primary will take place on Sept. 12. The winners of the primaries will run against each other in the general election on Nov. 7.
This week, petitioning got under way. Candidates running for City Council must collect at least 900 signatures from voters registered in their parties to qualify to be on the ballot for the primary
Sliwa’s endorsement of Capano capped off a busy few days for local candidates.
Brannan, who serves as chief of staff to outgoing Democratic Councilmember Vincent Gentile, was endorsed by his boss.
Gentile has represented the 43rd Council District since 2003, but cannot run for re-election due to the city’s term limits law.
“Justin has been my right-hand man for nearly a decade. Whether it was working together on legislation to crack down on illegal conversions or organizing volunteers for relief efforts in the wake of [Superstorm] Sandy, Justin has always been an effective problem-solver who gets things done,” Gentile said in a statement.
Brannan said the support of his boss means a great deal to him. “Councilmember Gentile has been a friend and mentor who has taught me the meaning of public service and put me on the path that led to my candidacy for City Council,” he said.
Brannan’s career in public service began in Gentile’s office, where he served as the director of Communications and Legislative Affairs, before being tapped to work for the de Blasio Administration to serve as deputy director of intergovernmental affairs at the Department of Education. Earlier this year, Brannan returned to Gentile’s office to serve as chief of staff.
Last week, Quaglione, who is deputy chief of staff to state Sen. Marty Golden (R-C-Bay Ridge-Southwest Brooklyn), was endorsed by Golden. Quaglione has worked for Golden for 19 years, a fact that the senator brought up when discussing his endorsement.
“He’s the guy who runs the office and takes care of things. That’s what you want, a person who can get things done, knows the agency, the people inside the agency, the ability to work across party lines and the major issues: public safety, transportation, education, housing and open space. It would be a good partnership,” Golden told the Brooklyn Eagle.
“This election is not about a political party, but about the people who live in the community,” Quaglione told the Eagle.