Quinn: ‘I’ve been independent for a long time’

Quinn. (Azi Paybarah)
Tweet Share on Facebook Share on Tumblr Print

At an awards ceremony hosted by the New York City portion of the Independence Party on Sunday afternoon, former White House Urban Affairs Director and potential mayoral candidate Adolfo Carrion declared he had left the Democratic Party and is now not enrolled in any party.

Carrion said he had "declared my independence," and "it feels good."

Minutes later, when I asked one of his likely rivals, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, a Democrat who was also in attendance, for her reaction, she scoffed at the idea of making such a gesture.

"I've been independent for a long time, so I'm good with it," Quinn said. "I'm 46. I've been independent for a while so I don't need any declarations."

MORE ON CAPITAL

ADVERTISEMENT

I tried asking Quinn how she would rate Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the Democrat-turned-Republican-turned-independent, in bringing about a more independent climate in the city.

She cut me off, laughed out loud and said, "Are you out of your mind, Azi? We're walking out of a holiday party. I'm not going to give you some big ... answer about the mayor."

The ceremony at the Tribeca Grill was the 13th Annual Anti-Corruption Awards, along with Carrion and Quinn, also included State Senator Malcolm Smith, a Democrat who has met with local Republican chairmen about the possibility of running for mayor on that party's line. Pollster Doug Schoen, a Democrat who has done extensive work with Bloomberg and has carved out a niche doing surveys that find a public hunger for post-partisan centrism, was also in attendance.

Bloomberg, who has worked with the Independence Party in an unsuccessful push for nonpartisan elections in New York, did not attend, but made a brief cameo by video to congratulate the group and one of their leaders, Jackie Salit, for her years of work.