A Kelly embrace costs Quinn, as the benefits slip away
Christine Quinn now appears to be getting the worst of both worlds on the issue of public safety.
Her early declaration of support for keeping Ray Kelly on as police commissioner has given Bill de Blasio his best means of attacking her for being inconsistent on the issue of reforming stop-and-frisk, and undermined her ability to create political distance between herself and Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
At the same time, according to today's Siena poll, more Democrats say they trust Bill de Blasio on public safety than Quinn, who had hoped by her Kelly endorsement to capitalize on the current administration's record of lowering crime rates.
Asked which Democrat "would do the best job" of "working with the police to keep New Yorkers safe," 26 percent chose Bill de Blasio. Twenty percent said Christine Quinn, 19 percent chose Bill Thompson, and 18 percent were undecided.
De Blasio supports two recently passed laws that would, respectively, create an inspector general for the NYPD and facilitate more lawsuits against the police department for alleged bias incidents.
Quinn endorsement of Kelly couldn't have seemed to her at the time to be a risky play; historically, he polls very well, remaining personally popular even when the police department receives criticism.
But de Blasio has repeatedly hit Quinn for her ties to Kelly, especially in the wake of the federal stop-and-frisk lawsuit and Kelly's statement on national television that based on the proportional descriptions of suspects, black and Latinos are "understopped".