The Misunderstood Candidacy of Corey Johnson, the Man Who Wants to Replace Christine Quinn

On November 5, New Yorkers will choose their next mayor. Whether City Council Speaker Christine Quinn is on the ballot or not, her seat in the Third District, which covers Chelsea, the West Village, and the Highline, will be in contention. And, as of now, one Democratic candidate named Corey Johnson (shown above) is in the running as her replacement. But he faces many of the same attacks on Quinn's mayoral campaign, some of which are mired in too-easy-to-leapfrog judgments.

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The City Council Passed the Community Safety Act, a Landmark NYPD Bill, Late Last Night

C.S. Muncy
"These bills arraign that we have the best police department we possibly can," Councilman Brad Lander said around 11 last night. At a stated meeting in City Hall, the legislature convened for a vote on the discharged parts of the Community Safety Act, in an attempt to pass measures that would drastically change the way our police conduct business. And they did: The council voted 40-11 to install an Inspector General for the NYPD and 34-17 to allow citizens to sue the police department on race-related issues.

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Christine Quinn Picks Up SEIU 32BJ Endorsement After Paid Sick Leave Bill

At the end of March, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn flip-flopped. She had stood in opposition to a paid sick leave bill for years, arguing that the measure would cause economic harm to a city deep in the Great Recession. But the mayoral race's influence trumped all: Pressing her Democratic base, she switched positions and eventually passed the bill with few exceptions for small businesses. In exchange, she handed the Service Employees International Unions Local 32BJ chapter a victory, resulting in their endorsement of her campaign yesterday.

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Kenneth G. Langone, Controversial NYU Trustee and Citizens United Provocateur, Is Major Lhota Backer

Kenneth Langone's latest political investment.
On January 21, 2010, the Supreme Court decided that corporations were people, too. The Citizens United ruling unleashed a new wave of influence in American elections; one that still has modern democracy reeling, as the last presidential election witnessed billions of dollars coming in from all over the country. Mega-millionaire Kenneth G. Langone, 78, was (and still is) at this frontline of legal corporatism, and his ties are everywhere, including NYU's much-talked-about loan compensation program and the wallet of the Republican frontrunner for City Hall, Joe Lhota.

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Citi Bike Stations Moved From Wealthy Neighborhoods; Commence Class Warfare?

Sam Levin
Another week, another Citi Bike dilemma. As the bike share program blows past the 250,000 rides mark, the placement of stations has become the subject of contention since its Memorial Day inauguration. The reasons are varied: The streets are too narrow to fit them; the streets are too packed with them; the streets are too ugly because of them. But, as it turns out, the physical response by the Department of Transportation has created a more income-based controversy.

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Officials to South Brooklynites: No Ferry (in Lieu of R Train) For You

Thumbnail image for BayRidgeFerry.JPG
Ferry service hasn't run out of this Bay Ridge station since 2010. And now commuters need it more than ever
A few weeks ago, we learned that the R train required drawn-out help. Its purveyor into Manhattan--the Montague Tunnel--was still wrecked by Hurricane Sandy; the construction witnessed the worst flooding of any other tunnel in New York. As a result, the MTA announced it would close the tunnel for 14 months, starting in August, leaving commuters strapped for travel options between Brooklyn Hall and Whitehall Street. Now they can strike "ferry service" off their list of possibilities.

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Use the Sun to Charge Your Phone for Free Across the City

In a Sandy-wrecked metropolis, New Yorkers learned how vulnerable their phones are once the lights go out; without electricity, nomadic residents were left charge-less at a time when communication with the outside world was needed more than ever. Luckily, as a gift to the city (presumably out of shame for their dead spots), AT&T is launching a program that will harness sunlight to get your smartphone battery up to 100 percent in no time.

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Former Exec VP Joe Lhota Has Deep Ties to Madison Square Garden's 30-Year Tax Break

In between his roles as Giuliani's "Rat Czar" and the MTA's chairman, mayoral candidate and Republican frontrunner Joe Lhota spent his days at 4 Pennsylvania Plaza. For five years, he was an executive vice president of Cablevision; then, in 2010, he was named the chief administrative officer at Madison Square Garden Co., the "mega-corporation" that runs the world's most famous sports arena, as well as Radio City, the Beacon Theater, the Knicks and the Rangers. There, he was responsible for securing the best gift of all from Albany: a free tax ride for the corporation worth millions.

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The Teacher's Candidate: The UFT Endorses Bill Thompson for Mayor

The UFT candidate.
Made up of over 70,000 members, the United Federation of Teachers has demanded a voice in this upcoming mayoral election. President Michael Mulgrew told the Observer two weeks ago that he expected his union to sway the election; the reason why each Democratic candidate has gone above and beyond to court his attention. And, as of last night, it looks like one of the most powerful unions in city politics has made its decision: The UFT wants Bill Thompson as its mayor (Sorry, Anthony Weiner).

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Three Strikes, You're Out: Albany Flops on Abortion Rights, Campaign Finance, and Medical Marijuana Bills

Remember the provision in the Women's Equality Act that would solidify abortion rights here in New York in the face of anti-abortion bills popping up in state legislatures across the country? Remember Cuomo's call for campaign finance regulation in a state electoral system that is drastically outdated and loophole-heavy? Remember the legislative push for medical marijuana in New York in a state with a record high number of weed arrests? Yeah? Well, none of them are happening anymore.

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