Posted: June 28th, 2016 | Filed under: Things That Make You Go "Oy"
A high-profile cabby advocate whose wife needs the city’s OK for a women-only livery service admitted to The Post on Monday that he raised campaign cash for Mayor Bill de Blasio and funneled it through an unemployed Brooklyn woman.
Fernando Mateo, founder of the New York State Federation of Taxi Drivers, came clean about the blatant violation of election law after The Post learned he had personally solicited a donation for Hizzoner and then had Ahlam Jaoui take credit for it.
The 31-year-old Bay Ridge woman, who has no political or fundraising experience, claims in campaign finance records to have collected 15 donations totaling $18,800 that were given to the de Blasio campaign in January.
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Mateo, a well-known Republican supporter, told The Post that he “called my people” to give money to Democrat de Blasio’s campaign and had Jaoui take credit for the donations. Mateo’s name does not appear on Jaoui’s January campaign finance report.
He claims that his motive was to help Jaoui land a city job.
“That’s the way politics works,” Mateo said. “If Ahlam worked hard for his candidacy, you’d think [the mayor] would say, ‘I employ thousands of people, why not at least bring her in for an interview?’
“But she didn’t get s–t. That’s a pisser because I thought she would get something out of it,” he added. “There are people who raise millions for a president and earn an ambassadorship. When you work hard, you get rewarded or at least remembered.”
Posted: June 6th, 2016 | Filed under: Things That Make You Go "Oy"
The shifting political landscape has forced Mr. de Blasio to retool his strategy: His aides said the new game plan was to highlight the mayor’s accomplishments, portray him as an able manager of its day-to-day and long-term needs, and shore up support among the core constituencies that have long backed him, including labor unions and liberal activists.
Surrogates have blasted out a litany of mayoral achievements by email, on Twitter and in op-eds articles. Aides have pointed to supportive words from a small number of voices rising to defend the mayor.
Returning to the “two cities” theme, the mayor has fashioned an array of boogeymen to rail against, from “billionaire media owners” and hedge fund managers to state investigatory agencies and Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, who has been increasingly willing to punch back publicly. It is a refrain that the mayor has underscored since a recent strategy discussion in which he embraced the idea, one adviser said.
[. . .]
Faced with the opposition, the mayor’s strategy has been threefold, aides said: Stay focused on the job; keep in constant communication with supporters and allies; and get the message out on the radio, in town-hall-style meetings and through community events.
In recent weeks, council members have been encouraged by the mayor’s office to post messages on Twitter vowing to “#protectprogress”; eight of 51 had done so by Friday. Unions, too, were pressed to express support.
Posted: May 31st, 2016 | Filed under: Things That Make You Go "Oy"
When Mayor de Blasio began handing out prestigious appointments to obscure boards and committees in his first months in City Hall, he turned to a system of cash for cachet.
His team assembled an elite spreadsheet of major campaign donors, powerful lobbyists and celebrities as candidates for the coveted slots doled out by de Blasio.
This internal spreadsheet — obtained by the Daily News — reveals a blatant and highly choreographed effort to reward donors and New York power players with high-profile VIP appointments.
The 2014 list even goes so far as to suggest that de Blasio appoint lobbyists who were and are actively lobbying his administration on behalf of their wealthy clients.
At least 14 of the mayor’s top “bundlers” who used a legal loophole to collect big bucks far in excess of donation restrictions made the list. So did four early donors to de Blasio’s now-defunct lobbying group, the Campaign for One New York.
“Confidential notes” on the list reveal the candidate’s business ties, but do not highlight actual qualifications for specific appointments. They do, however, reference support for the mayor, sometimes in financial terms.
Candidates are described as “with us early on,” “did a lot,” “real deal” and “showed up early.” One states “decent amount,” an apparent reference to the candidate’s fund-raising for the mayor.
Posted: May 28th, 2016 | Filed under: 1
Large gaps in New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s schedule are now filled with private meetings and calls away from City Hall since multiple investigations into his fundraising and administration began, according to documents and people familiar with the matter.
Mr. de Blasio, a Democrat, has curtailed his public appearances, sometimes going several days without appearing in public and sometimes leaving the events he attends through side doors and service elevators, as he did in Manhattan this week.
[. . .]
On Mr. de Blasio’s internal schedules in recent weeks, blocks of hours are listed away from City Hall, often with little detail. Three people close to the mayor said they don’t know how he is spending this time.
Mr. de Blasio has typically spent Fridays outside his office, making political calls from Gracie Mansion or a coffee shop or restaurant in Brooklyn’s Park Slope neighborhood, these people said. But that work pattern now extends beyond Fridays, they said.
A person familiar with the mayor’s thinking said Mr. de Blasio has chosen to limit news conferences because he expected he would be asked about the investigations and was frustrated by the attention paid to them. In the past two weeks, he has delivered five speeches closed to the media, more than in previous months, according to his schedules.
A lobbyist who works closely with the mayor’s office said aides have discouraged people from sending emails, instead asking them to call or send text messages.
In April, “De Blasio’s approval rating reaches all-time low”. Now in May, “Mayor de Blasio’s approval hits record low”:
Posted: May 26th, 2016 | Filed under: Things That Make You Go "Oy"
Only 41 percent of voters in the latest Quinnipiac University survey said the mayor was doing a good job, while 52 percent said he wasn’t.
That’s a 19-point swing from the previous Q poll, in January, when he de Blasio had a positive, 50-42, rating.
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Voters’ views of de Blasio’s honesty also reached historic lows, with 45 percent saying he’s not trustworthy and 43 percent saying he is.