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Capano confirms he is running

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Politico Bob Capano has been making his rounds lately — firing off op-eds to local papers, meeting with Republican political groups, and flooding inboxes with press releases. Well here’s why: The erstwhile “potential” council candidate announced exclusively to this paper that he will run to replace term-limited Councilman Vincent Gentile (D–Bay Ridge) in the 43 Council District.

The Staten Islander and former Brooklyn borough president staffer still has to file the paperwork with the Board of Elections and said he is currently looking for a home in the Brooklyn district (a requirement for the office). He may not rest his head here yet, but he has set his sights on potential rivals.

Most recently, Capano has been taking it to Linda Sarsour of the Arab-American Association of New York, who is rumored to be seeking the seat as a Democrat.

Capano is demanding Sarsour step down from her post at the association, because she failed to condemn a Palestinian terrorist that killed four in Tel Aviv, Israel on June 8.

“There is no reason in the world for it not to be unequivocally condemned,” Capano said.

Instead she angrily tweeted about Israel’s reaction to the attacks — when it revoked entry permits for 83,000 Palestinians during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

Capano also harped on a contentious tweet form last year where Sarsour called a photo of a Palestinian child throwing rocks at Israeli solders “the definition of courage.”

“If she didn’t have a long history of making extreme statements and basically supporting violence against Israel, I wouldn’t have said anything,” he said.

Sarsour declined to comment and did not respond to inquiries whether she would run.

“I am not interested in Bob Capano getting media hits on my back,” she said.

• • •

And the mud-slinging continues in the race for the 46th Assembly District — the latest in a power struggle over the Coney Island-to-Bay Ridge district.

Challenger Kate Cucco is charging that Assemblywoman Pam Harris (D–Coney Island) failed to do her job when she did not show up for an assembly vote on June 1.

Lawmakers in the house passed the “New York Health Act” — a bill calling for single-payer health care in the state — by an overwhelming majority, but Harris was absent and denied her constituents a voice, said Cucco, a member of the Bay Ridge Democrats.

“I just think it’s completely outrageous that she wasn’t present to cast a vote for one of the most significant pieces of legislation in this session,” Cucco said. “Assemblywo­man Harris should be held accountable for why she was not there, was she not there or does she not support the bill? As constituents, we deserve an answer.”

The proposal now faces the Republican-controlled Senate, where it is unlikely to pass due to budgetary constraints, according to a Democratic strategist.

Harris’s campaign did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

• • •

Suspended Brooklyn Board of Elections Democratic chief clerk Betty Ann Canizio has dropped out of the race for 64th Assembly District committeewoman — a low-level, unpaid elected position primarily responsible for staffing polling sites on election day.

Canizio is under investigation for Brooklyn’s Democratic voter purge ahead of the presidential primary on April 19.

A spokesman for party boss Frank Seddio confirmed on June 13 that Canizio opted to bow out, leaving incumbent Joanne Seminara uncontested in the September 13 primary.

Canizio has more than $10,000 in her campaign account, city records show. She began the year with $2,085.06, raked in a total of $8,295 since February, and spent just $15 on banking fees, records show.

Canizio declined to comment about her quitting or what she’d do with her remaining war chest.

“I have nothing to say,” she said.

Reach reporter Julianne Cuba at (718) 260–4577 or by e-mail at jcuba@cnglocal.com. Follow her on Twitter @julcuba.
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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