8:55 am Oct. 5, 2012
In a speech yesterday morning to unveil his early education policy, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio took shots at two of his likely mayoral rivals, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and City Comptroller John Liu.
Last night, at a panel discussion organized by City & State and held at the Midtown office of Bryan Cave, de Blasio landed one more shot at a third rival.
At one point during the event, de Blasio said voter enthusiasm impacts voter turnout. "If people are dissatisfied, by the way, great example is 2009 right here in New York City, where neither the Democrat nor the Republican, [Michael] Bloomberg or [Bill] Thompson were able to generate much vote, so they had an extremely low vote-total."
Thompson is a declared candidate for the upcoming mayoral race which de Blasio is widely expected to enter as well.
He left the panel discussion moments later. On his way out, I asked him to elaborate on his 2009 remarks.
Waiting for the elevator to arrive on the 35th floor, de Blasio first blamed the low-turnout on Bloomberg. Voters, de Blasio said, were "incredibly turned off by how the mayor changed
turn term limits. They were very turned off by the spending the mayor did, which was ostentatious to say the least."
Then stepping into the elevator, he said, "Obviously on the Democratic side, Thomspon did not motivate people to come out. So, I think when you add it together...both sides vote base stayed home."
Turnout for the 2009 race was just over 1.1 million, down from about 1.3 million in 2005 and over 1.5 million in 2001.
Reached via email last night, a Thompson spokesman did not provide a comment in response.
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