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The Working Families Party: We Will Unify With Democrats

“We want to have a unified ticket with the Democrats at the end of the day," said Dan Cantor, the executive director of the Working Families Party, a labor-backed party that wrapped up its nominating convention here today.

But endorsing Democratic candidates isn't so easy.

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Cuomo said he's not taking the party's support - for now - pending the results of a U.S. Attorney's investigation into the group's campaign spending last year. And of the five Democratic attorney general candidates running, none attended the WFP's convention.

So, after a brief, closed-door meeting today, the WFP endorsed three little-known lawyers from New York City who, Cantor said, could be changed for other candidates as the November elections approaches.

"We needed to find a slate of candidates to carry our banner forward. If the situation changes between now and November, under New York law, there are ways to change your ticket," said Cantor.

"We're confident that at the end of the day, we'll end up with a unified effort with the Democrats," he said.

Cuomo didn't attend the WFP convention in Buffalo, but did call and thank the members of the Independence Party who nominated him for governor during their convention yesterday in Albany.

But the Independence Party is also under investigation. The Manhattan District Attorney is looking at payments the party received from Mayor Michael Bloomberg's reelection campaign last year.

When asked if he felt there was a double standard in how Cuomo was treating the two parties under investigation, Cantor declined to comment.

( Azi Paybarah )
Democrat Andrew Cuomo said he's not ready yet to take their endorsement because the U.S. Attorney is investigating the party. Dan Cantor (left) and deputy director Bill Lipton (right).
Democrat Andrew Cuomo said he's not ready yet to take their endorsement because the U.S. Attorney is investigating the party. Dan Cantor (left) and deputy director Bill Lipton (right). ( Azi Paybarah )
Sen. Chuck Schumer told the WFP "Of course, I'll be honored once again to be your standard bearer."  Schumer spoke earlier at the Independent party's convention in Albany.
Sen. Chuck Schumer told the WFP "Of course, I'll be honored once again to be your standard bearer." Schumer spoke earlier at the Independent party's convention in Albany.

His colleague, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, attended neither.

 

( Azi Paybarah )
NYS Comptroller Tom DiNapoli said, "In my line of work there's a lot of counting. And from now through Election Day, I hope I can count on you."
NYS Comptroller Tom DiNapoli said, "In my line of work there's a lot of counting. And from now through Election Day, I hope I can count on you." ( Azi Paybarah )
Democrat Antoine Thompson of Buffalo was the only State Senator to attend the WFP convention. He told WNYC he thinks Andrew Cuomo "should take the organization's endorsement."
Democrat Antoine Thompson of Buffalo was the only State Senator to attend the WFP convention. He told WNYC he thinks Andrew Cuomo "should take the organization's endorsement." ( Azi Paybarah )
Bertha Lewis, who led ACORN's New York operation and is a founding member of the WFP, said it's "disappointing" Andrew Cuomo doesn't want the party’s support.
Bertha Lewis, who led ACORN's New York operation and is a founding member of the WFP, said it's "disappointing" Andrew Cuomo doesn't want the party’s support. ( Azi Paybarah )
Brian Higgins (D-NY27) was the only member of Congress to attend the party's convention.
Brian Higgins (D-NY27) was the only member of Congress to attend the party's convention. ( Azi Paybarah )
Bob King
Bob King ( Azi Paybarah )
On Sunday, the WFP went into a closed-door session and, moments later, nominated three little-known lawyers from NYC to run on their line for governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general.
On Sunday, the WFP went into a closed-door session and, moments later, nominated three little-known lawyers from NYC to run on their line for governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general. ( Azi Paybarah )
After the nominations were made, WFP co-chair Bob Master worked the phones. Under state law, the party can substitute those candidates before the November elections.
After the nominations were made, WFP co-chair Bob Master worked the phones. Under state law, the party can substitute those candidates before the November elections. ( Azi Paybarah )
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