I don’t usually pay attention to political endorsements, but when man who was once a front-runner for president (of the United States, even!) inserts himself into one of our humble little City Council races, I’m at least willing to go out and take a photo.
So that’s why I’ll be on 10th Street in Park Slope later this morning, watching former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean endorse Josh Skaller (though possibly other candidates, too) in a five-man Democratic primary race to succeed Councilman Bill DeBlasio in Park Slope, Carroll Gardens and Windsor Terrace.
The “big” endorsement by Dean, who ran a momentarily strong campaign for president in 2004, caps a pretty good week for Skaller in this phase of the campaign: the search for insider kudos. Last week, Skaller was endorsed by Assemblyman Jim Brennan (D–Park Slope). And earlier in the campaign, he was endorsed by state Sen. Eric Adams (D–Fort Greene) and the Central Brooklyn Independent Democrats.
The Dean endorsement, though a little weird, is not unexpected among the community of people (small) that follows this kind of thing (political insider baseball). Skaller was a co-founder of the New York chapter of Dean’s post-campaign organization, Democracy for America.
And there’s something even weirder still: One of my sources tells me that Dean may also endorse one of Skaller’s rival in the race.
But until that happens, Skaller’s appearance with Dean is the biggest story of the non-story that is endorsements, giving Skaller a slight lead over rival Brad Lander in the endorsement beauty pageant.
Lander, the former head of the Pratt Center for Community Development, has been annointed by the Working Families Party; Local 32BJ, a union; Rep. Jerry Nadler (D–Coney Island); and state Sen. Daniel Squadron (D–Brooklyn Heights).
Meanwhile, Bob Zuckerman, who is on leave from his job as director of the Gowanus Canal Conservancy and the Gowanus Canal Development Corporation, has been endorsed by a long list of not-so-top names: Assemblyman Richard Gottfried (D–Westchester), Councilman Alan Gerson (D–Manhattan); state Sen. Tom Duane (D–Manhattan); and Assemblymembers Jonathan Bing, Deborah Glick, Micah Kellner, Daniel O’Donnell and Matt Titone.
A fourth candidate, John Heyer, has been endorsed by the Independent Neighborhood Democrats, a local clubhouse.
The final candidate, Gary Reilly, has reported no major endorsements.
©2009 Community News Group
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