BY LUIS GRONDA
The Democratic Party needs to be united in order to win November’s election.
That was Bill de Blasio’s message as he accepted the endorsement of the Queens Democratic Party at Queens Borough Hall on Monday.
Queens Dems endorsed de Blasio for Mayor following his primary victory earlier this month. They originally endorsed Council Speaker Christine Quinn (D-Manhattan) for the September primary.
Flanked by almost every Queens Democrat and District Leader in the Borough, the current Public Advocate said there are six registered Democrats to every one Republican in New York City and uniting the party for this race is paramount.
“The unity we’re displaying today, which we displayed previously at gatherings in other Boroughs, is something that I hope people understand is going to make a huge impact,” de Blasio said.
He added that Queens is the most diverse Borough and while that is to be celebrated, it also requires attention from City Hall.
“That also means that Queens has very particular needs that City Hall has to be sensitive to and has to address,” he said. “One of the things is the Mayor has to spend some time here on the ground with the people to understand those needs.”
Responding to a comment made by Joe Lhota, the Republican candidate for Mayor earlier this week, where he called him a “Democratic Socialist” for de Blasio’s past activist work in Nicaragua and Cuba, he said he was not surprised to see Lhota call him a name, describing it as a “Republican tactic,” and he is proud to be a Democrat and a progressive. The endorsement from the Queens Democrats came on the same day that de Blasio received the backing of President Barack Obama.
The Queens Democratic Party also endorsed Councilwoman Letitia James (D-Brooklyn) to replace de Blasio as Public Advocate. James and State Sen. Daniel Squadron (D-Brooklyn/Manhattan) face a run-off vote for the position on Oct. 1 after the required 40 percent to win the seat outright was not reached during the Primary.
“I have the experience, I have the history of accomplishments and we will move the City in a new direction representing everyone at the table of the City of New York,” James said during her brief remarks accepting the endorsement.
Reach Luis Gronda at (718) 357-7400, Ext. 127, firstname.lastname@example.org, or @luisgronda.