Arun Venugopal is a reporter and the creator of Micropolis, WNYC’s multi-platform series examining race, sexuality, religion, street life and other issues that define New York City. He has been with the station since 2005, and has covered a wide range of stories, including the death of Sean Bell, the controversy over the Park 51 mosque and community center and Occupy Wall Street .
Candidates in Last Minute Scramble for Primary Votes
Monday, September 14, 2009
Candidates for political office campaigned hard this weekend ahead of tomorrow's primary election, not just in citywide races but in some local races that might see a change of guard. In the 14th Council District, one challenger, Fernando Cabrera, has secured a number of important endorsements, including from the Bronx Democratic machine. But the incumbent, Councilmember Maria Baez, issued some fighting words at a street fair.
'And we're going to make sure, and we're going to show them, that you can't come in the 14th Council District and you've given nothing to this community.'
Baez has been cited as the Councilmember with the poorest attendance record - a fact she attributes to health issues. Also running is Yudelka Tapia.
City Comptroller Bill Thompson is running to be the Democratic nominee for mayor and stopped by several street fairs yesterday, in the Bronx and Queens.
'We need to say good bye adios to Mike Bloomberg. It is time we put someone in City Hall who will stand up and fight for us.'
'Everybody knows the work that Bill de Blasio does when Mike Bloomberg hijacked democracy and wanted to run for a 3rd term because he thinks billions can buy everybody. One guy stood up - Bill de Blasio!'
City comptroller candidate John Liu was at an outdoor fair at sprawling Co-op City, in the Bronx. Whoever was in charge of the PA system even gave him a beat.
'I'm running for city comptroller. I'm going to combine my knowledge of the city to work for you and the people of New York as comptroller!'
Meanwhile, another comptroller candidate, Melinda Katz, attended a street fair on Fordham Road, also in the Bronx. They are running against fellow Councilmembers David Yassky and David Weprin.
He says the turnout is likely to be very low, since there are no big showdowns. He thinks that puts the pressure on individual candidates.
'Who can bring out their own voters is the most important. That's not a question of who has the most endorsements or who has the New York Times endorsements. It's question of who can get their voters out to vote.'