De Blasio, Lhota at top in latest mayoral primary poll results
With primary elections now less than a week away, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio has widened his lead over the other Democrats running for mayor while former Deputy Mayor and Metropolitan Transportation Authority Chairman Joe Lhota remains the favorite of Republicans, according to the latest survey.
Forty-three percent of likely Democratic voters back de Blasio, according to the poll, by Quinnipiac University, while 20 percent support former Comptroller Bill Thompson and 18 percent favor City Council Speaker Christine Quinn (D-Manhattan). The other candidates are all below 10 percent.
A week earlier, de Blasio was at 36 percent.
If the figures were to hold out on Primary Day, Sept. 10, de Blasio would avoid the runoff election required if no one wins 40 percent of the vote. Most analysts and many of the candidates had been predicting a runoff all along.
On the GOP side, Lhota is backed by 48 percent of likely voters, with 24 percent going for businessman John Catsimatidis and 10 percent for nonprofit founder George McDonald.
To see the full survey, visit quinnipiac.edu and click on the “Institutes + Centers” button.
Crime lower than ever, city boasts in new tally
The numbers of shootings and murders in the city are now the lowest ever recorded, down 25 percent so far this year compared to last, Mayor Bloomberg announced Tuesday.
There were 224 murders reported so far this year through Sept. 1, compared to 299 for the same period last year, the Mayor’s Office said. There were 740 shootings, compared to 990 through Sept. 1 last year.
The 419 homicides committed in all of 2012 were already the fewest the city has ever recorded since reliable records have been kept.
The city began issuing its new weekly reports on murders and shootings to the media on Aug. 27, as it remains embroiled in legal actions and political debates over the police practice of stop and frisk [see separate story in most editions or at qchron.com].
‘Urgent’ need is seen for blood donations
The New York Blood Center is urging people to donate, saying last week that it had less than a two-day supply of “universal” Type O-negative blood on hand. Type O-negative can be used to save anyone, regardless of blood type, in an emergency. The NYBC said it also needs more type B-negative blood in particular.
There were fewer blood drives scheduled for the beginning of September this year than there usually are, the NYBC said. To donate, set up a blood drive or learn more, call 1 (800) 933-BLOOD (2566) or go to nybloodcenter.org.
IRS now treating LGBT couples same as others
Legally married same-sex couples will now be recognized as such by the Internal Revenue Service for tax purposes, Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-Manhattan, Queens) announced last week. The change is one of many President Obama has implemented following the Supreme Court’s ruling that the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional.
Maloney said Obama’s move “continues the nation’s march toward equality for all,” including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people: “In recent years we’ve seen sweeping progress towards ending discrimination against LGBT Americans and I’m proud to support these efforts. However, we are by no means finished. There are still tens of thousands of American couples who live in states where they are treated as second-class citizens.”
NYC voter guide online
The city’s Campaign Finance Board last week released a voter’s guide to the Sept. 10 primaries, featuring “comprehensive, nonpartisan information” about the candidates. It is available in print, online, video and audio formats via nyccfb.info or nycvotes.org.
— compiled by Peter C. Mastrosimone