By Jon Cronin, Editor
Former Republican Councilman Anthony Como confirmed that City Council candidate Robert Holden will be the Queens GOP nominee in the Council District 30 race, although the nomination appears to be unbeknownst to the Juniper Park Civic Association president.
Como noted that in a conversation with the Queens Republicans’ current nominee, Joseph Kasper, an Ozone Park attorney, Kasper claimed that he was just a “place holder” for Holden. He added that the GOP would wait to see whether Holden won the Democratic primary on Sept. 12 and, if not, the GOP would endorse him.
Como said that for a council seat that has historically been held by a Republican, he wished that the GOP would endorse a “true Republican.”
“I know several Republicans who would make good candidates,” Como added. “It’s been done before. I don’t agree with it. I’ve crossed endorsed Democrats too.”
Como said the fact that Kasper doesn’t live in the district is “even more embarrassing,” and proves that the GOP was planning to back Holden from the beginning.
“I was extremely upset and disenchanted when he got the Conservative [Party] endorsement. When something like that happens, you know there is something behind the scenes going on,” Como said.
Joseph Kasper was nominated at the beginning of the summer by the Queens County GOP, but no one has heard from the attorney since. There is no literature on his candidacy and no website or social media accounts announcing his platform.
Scherie Murray, spokeswoman for the Queens County GOP, said that the party is supporting attorney Joe Kasper for the Republican nominee for Council District 30.
Murray said that she was unaware that Kasper did not live in the district. However, Kasper has an office within the district and could move there if he wins the election.
As to whether the GOP will endorse Holden, she said, “We have no comment at this time.”
“People are just assuming that and I would like to know who is saying that,” said Holden.
Regarding Como, he said, “I haven’t heard from him in years,” and added that in Como’s run for City Council against Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley (D-Glendale), Holden supported her.
“I’ve been a Democrat longer than Elizabeth Crowley has been alive,” he noted.
Holden said that people consistently suspect he is a Republican and explains that when he registered as a Democratic at 21 years of age, his values more closely resembled theirs at the time.
“That may be somebody’s grand plan, but they have to offer it to me first and I have to accept,” he added.
Holden said that when he decided to run, the only Republican he spoke with was Mike Conigliaro – to ask if he was running.
“If the GOP comes to me, I’ll listen,” he stated, “It doesn’t matter what party I’m in, I want to beat Elizabeth Crowley.”
Holden said that he doesn’t understand why people think he would go through the trouble of running in the Democratic Primary if he had already planned to accept the Republican nomination.