Former Councilman and Deputy Borough President Leroy Comrie, left, is stockpiling political endorsements in his battle to unseat state Senator and 14-year incumbent Malcolm Smith in the primary for the 14th Senate District in September.
Shortly after he was kicked out of the state Senate’s Independent Democratic Conference in 2013, people in Albany and Southeast Queens began calling him the man without a party.
Now locked in a primary battle for his political survival and a federal corruption trial restarting in January, state Sen. Malcolm Smith apparently can only watch as every party leader, elected official and natural Democratic constituency group lines up behind former Councilman and Deputy Borough President Leroy Comrie.
The strange but true history of the New York State Senate’s Independent Democratic Conference took a turn for the positively wild on Tuesday, with Mayor de Blasio endorsing incumbent IDC members Tony Avella (D-Bayside) and Jeff Klein (D-Bronx).
Adding to the surprise was the announcement that the Working Families Party had withdrawn its backing of former city Comptroller John Liu, who is challenging Avella, and former state Attorney General Oliver Koppell, who is primarying Klein, and will remain neutral in both races
Going back to visit their old high school is something many students do. The objective is to see their favorite teachers, administrators and friends to see what changes been implemented since their departure.
Unfortunately, the new graduates of Jamaica High School will not be able to do this.
Not long after this year’s graduating seniors were admitted, the city Department of Education moved for a second time to close Jamaica High School and, after four years of slowly being phased out, the school graduated its final 24 students on Thursday, June 26, 2014.
“You are the 175th graduating class,” Principal Erich Kendall told the graduates, “and there will not be a 176th.”
Borough President Melinda Katz, center left, joins former Deputy Borough President Leroy Comrie, Franck Joseph II of Councilman Donovan Richards’ office, Queens Parks Commissioner Dorothy Lewandowski and several young experts on playgrounds at the recent ribbon cutting on the newly renovated Laurelton West Playground.
The $1.5 million makeover gave local children a recreational area that now includes brand-new swing sets, picnic tables, open lawn areas, benches and drinking fountains, as well as great stuff to climb, jump and play on.
While we understand the judge’s reasoning for granting a mistrial in the federal corruption case against state Sen. Malcolm Smith of Hollis and former Queens Republican Party official Vince Tabone, the move is a travesty for the people in the lawmaker’s district.
This trial should have been wrapped up before the September primaries, in which Smith faces a serious challenge from former Councilman and Deputy Borough President Leroy Comrie, as well as bids by two other hopefuls. The people should have known if their senator really did try to bribe his way onto last year’s mayoral ballot, as alleged.
A federal judge on Tuesday granted state Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-Hollis) and former Queens County Republican Party official Vincent Tabone a mistrial on federal corruption and fraud charges.
Judge Kenneth Karas granted the defense motion after learning that a juror on the case would be unable to continue to serve if the trial were delayed a few weeks to allow lawyers for Smith and Tabone to receive and review transcripts of conversations that cooperating government witness Moses Stern had with his rabbi. The conversations, many of which transpired in Yiddish, were picked up by FBI listening devices.
Roy Wilkins Park recently hosted the seventh annual Fathers and Children’s Picnic, an event co-sponsored by the Real Dads Network; Assemblyman Bill Scarborough, center ,in black; Forestdale, a Forest Hills family services organization; and the Open Society Foundations Campaign for Male Achievement.
Dads and their children enjoyed hot dogs and hamburgers fresh from the grill; chicken, pizza and ribs from City Rib of Jamaica; and a variety of arts, crafts and games provided by the Queens Division of the city’s Department of Parks and Recreation.
State Sen. Malcolm Smith’s (D-Hollis) ongoing federal corruption trial certainly isn’t helping his re-election campaign.
But image aside, the senator is facing a more practical and possibly equally daunting challenge in the 14th Senate District — the defection of big labor support, and presumably union money and ground troops, to former Deputy Borough President Leroy Comrie.
Barring any last-minute surprises on Friday at a pre-trial conference, jury selection is expected to begin Monday morning in Westchester County in the matter of the United States of America v. Daniel Halloran, Malcolm Smith and Vincent Tabone.
The three were among six people arrested 14 months ago in an alleged scheme by state Sen. Smith (D-Hollis) to bribe Republican officials in New York City in an effort to get his name on the Republican ballot for mayor in 2013.
The Laurelton Lions Club, VFW Post 5298 and other community groups honored fallen heroes in Laurelton on Monday with a parade and wreath-laying ceremony.
In attendance were Girl and Boy Scouts, the Buffalo Soldiers — who rumbled down the street on their motorcycles — veterans and community leaders and groups.
The Queens Democratic Party backed former City Comptroller John Liu as their candidate in the 11th state Senate District, pitting the former councilman and mayoral candidate against a former colleague, incumbent state Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside), who angered his party when he joined the Independent Democratic Caucus — a group of breakaway Democrats who caucus with Republicans in the state’s upper legislative body.
Liu received the endorsement at the county organization’s meeting in Forest Hills on Monday morning.
The Queens Democratic Party has endorsed former City Comptroller John Liu as its candidate in the 11th state Senate district, pitting the former Flushing councilman and mayoral candidate against a former colleague, incumbent state Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside), who angered Democrats when he joined the Independent Democratic Caucus — a group of breakaway Democrats who caucus with Republicans in the state’s upper legislative body.
Munir Avery, left, and Clyde Vanel have been campaigning for Malcolm Smith’s job since this winter. No photo was available for Bernadette Semple, a Navy veteran who entered the race in March.
State Sen. Malcolm Smith, left, picked up his most dangerous challenger to date on Monday, when former Councilman and Deputy Borough President Leroy Comrie announced his candidacy for the Democratic nomination in the 14th District.
Leroy Comrie confirmed the worst-kept secret on Queens politics on Monday when he formally announced his candidacy for the Democratic nomination for the state’s 14th Senate District, the seat held by embattled Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-Hollis).
Comrie, speaking in a telephone interview on Tuesday, said the move was prompted both by people actively urging him to take on Smith, and a bit of homesickness for the hands-on legislative process.
Deputy Borough President Leroy Comrie is expected to formally kick off his campaign to unseat state Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-Hollis) this week according to a report published in Monday’s Daily News.
Comrie could not be reached for comment, but said to the Chronicle in a phone conversation last month that he had been “90 percent ready” to run.
Litter and trash in South and Southeast Queens has been compared to the weather — many complain but nobody does anything about it.
But government and civic officials are calling a program introduced on Monday a way to manage the problem on a borough-wide basis rather that just as an issue in isolated, individual neighborhoods.
Former Mayor Mike Bloomberg came under heavy criticism for his handling of the city school system in his final years in office.
But a gathering in South Jamaica last Friday, hosted by state Sen. James Sanders Jr. (D-South Ozone Park), showed that many parents and education advocates have similar or new concerns with the policies of Mayor de Blasio and Gov. Cuomo.
Deputy Borough President Leroy Comrie did not exactly deny the gist of a New York Post article claiming he told the paper he is “90 percent ready” to enter a primary against embattled state Senator Malcolm Smith (D-Hollis).
But he would not comment on quotes critical of Smith that the paper said he told a reporter.
A Navy veteran from Laurelton is the latest candidate to challenge state Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-Hollis) in his reelection bid in the 14th Senate District.
Bernadette Semple has filed paperwork with the state Board of Elections that allows her to conduct fundraising.
Forgive state Senate Democrats if they view their colleagues from Queens with a jaundiced eye.
Depending on whether Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside) can win re-election, and just whom he winds up caucusing with, he may become the second Queens Democrat in two election cycles to cost his party working control of the august body in Albany.
You are cordially invited to more than nine hours of golf in the outdoors, in the company of and in honor of state Sen. Malcolm Smith.
Borough President Melinda Katz, second from left, and Deputy Borough President Leroy Comrie, right, honored four individuals on Feb. 25 as part of Katz’s inaugural African American Heritage Month event at Borough Hall
Honorees included John Crow Alexander, left, host and producer of “Caribbean Classroom”; former Queens Borough President Helen Marshall, who held the position for 12 years before Katz was elected last year; and Andre McKenzie, vice president for academic support services at St. John’s University.