City Council Speaker Christine Quinn told a Democratic Party club in her home base of Chelsea last night that she’s not about to pledge to back her own party’s mayoral nominee — whoever it is.
“When the Democratic primary is all said and done I will choose one candidate,” she told the Chelsea Reform Democratic Club’s nomination meeting. “If you’re asking me to say I’m 100 percent committed to picking a Democrat, I’m not going to do that,” she added.
Quinn made her no-commitment pledge in response to pointed questions from members of the liberal club who questioned her close alliance with Mayor Bloomberg. Quinn, who is facing at least three opponents in her bid for reelection as council member representing the Chelsea-Hells Kitchen district, said she wondered why people were even asking her about it.
It’s a reflection of how divided politics has become, she said, “that when two people can work well together that becomes something to discuss.”
The club gave a big hand to two of Quinn’s opponents, Maria Passanante-Derr and Yetta Kurland, both of whom criticized the council vote last fall to overturn the city’s term limits laws, a move pushed by Bloomberg and backed by Quinn.
Quinn’s statement, as The Daily News’ Michael Saul points out, is another blow to Democrats. Right now the party’s likely nominee is comptroller William Thompson. But Queens councilman Tony Avella is also in the race and told Saul: “She does what she’s told to by Mike Bloomberg.”
Which tends to support what Quinn told the club last night in an aside: “I’m not sure Tony would want my endorsement anyways, but that’s another discussion.”