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Smaller-Party Candidates Making Big News – QNS.com

Smaller-Party Candidates Making Big News

New York, New York… it’s a Dem kinda town.
Certainly for a candidate to be taken seriously in most parts of this fine city, their name must be preceded by a big “D” – and I don’t mean Dallas.
In the City Council we only have three Republicans – one is Dennis Gallagher of Western Queens – and one “third party” candidate in Letitia James of the Working Families Party.
Otherwise, it’s 47 D’s all in a row.
While that figure is unlikely to change after Election Day, there are a few candidates out there with some high hopes.
And two of them made a splash on the campaign trail in the last week.
Robyn Sklar, a Green Party candidate running against Eric Gioia in the 26th District became the first-ever member of her party to qualify for Campaign Finance Board matching funds.
Sklar raised the requisite $5,000 ($9,042 to be exact) with at least $10 or more from 75 in-district residents.
As a result, Sklar, a community activist, will get a nearly $27,000 infusion of money to go up against the fundraising juggernaut that is Gioia.
The incumbent councilmember has raised $544,621 so far. That’s good for third in the city behind Melinda Katz and Brooklyn’s David Yassky.
So Gioia will have 15 times more money than Sklar when all is said and done.
But despite the long odds, Sklar is campaigning hard and enjoying the novelty of being the first “greenie” to nab public funding in New York City.
“I’m humbled by the outpouring of support I have received from voters interested in having an independent voice on the City Council calling for clean energy, affordable housing, safe transit and more after school programs,” Sklar said.
Over in Bayside, a Republican is making a run at an incumbent Democrat.
Peter Boudouvas, who ran for Assembly last year against Ann Margaret Carrozza, is going after Councilmember Tony Avella this time.
Boudouvas received a huge lift last week when his fundraiser was attended by Hizzoner, Mike Bloomberg.
Boudouvas has raised $21,314 and qualified for $56,924 in matching funds. His opponent will have close to $200,000 to play with, but Boudouvas’ total is certainly nothing to sneeze at, especially in a district where a lot of GOPers are just waiting in the weeds to vote for one of their own.
In 2001, Dennis Saffran missed out by 400 votes – 16,644 to 16,229. In 2003, Phil Ragusa, without Bloomberg’s coattails to ride, fell 4,000 votes short. But certainly this year, with three lines and a strong incumbent mayor behind him, Boudouvas is hoping the close call of 2001 can swing his way.
I’ll pretend you asked: The Ferrer camp really was the gang that couldn’t shoot straight last week. First there was the blog entry saying Ferrer went to public school when he didn’t, then he shows up at a public school when he’s not supposed to (it’s against campaign laws).
Now the campaign is resorting to digging through Bloomberg’s website and statements to find statistical glitches to email to the press, hoping something sticks.
That’s not the way you knock off someone 14 points ahead of you in the polls. Ferrer needs to make the case for himself to the undecided swing Dems out there, or this race is already over.
And please, I beg you, leave Howard Dean out of this.
politics@queenscourier.com

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