Mayor Bill de Blasio and state Assemblyman Francisco Moya (D-Jackson Heights) marched together during the Ecuadorian Day Parade Sunday along Northern Boulevard in Jackson Heights. Before the parade stepped off, de Blasio and Moya formally endorsed each other at the Antioch Baptist Church in Corona, citing their shared support of protecting immigrants, building affordable housing and fighting for progressive causes.
De Blasio‘s main challenger is a Staten Island Republican and Moya has tossed his hat into the ring for a City Council seat.
“Francisco Moya has spent years fighting for this community in the state Legislature. He has proven time and again his commitment to ensuring that every family has the tools they need to succeed, by working to expand access to affordable housing, supporting our public schools, and reforming our criminal justice system,” de Blasio said. “This is the kind of leadership that we deserve to have in the City Council and with Francisco Moya as our next Council member for the 21st District, we will have a true champion in city government.”
The Mayor will face a challenge by presumptive-Republican nominee state Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis of Staten Island. She made a brief appearance earlier at the Ecuadorian Day Parade before leaving for Manhattan to march in the Pakistan Day Parade.
“Our city has been fortunate to have Mayor Bill de Blasio at the helm these last four years,” Moya said. “I am honored to receive Mayor de Blasio’s endorsement of my City Council candidacy and I am equally honored and excited to endorse him in his own re-election campaign.”
Moya will face Hiram Monserrate, a former state senator and City Council member, in the Sept. 12 Democratic primary in a race to replace retiring City Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras-Copeland (D-East Elmhurst). Monserrate dismissed Sunday’s dual endorsement.
I predict the mayor’s seal of approval on Moya won’t affect the election mainly because Moya is a puppet of the political insiders and the real estate developers and the community already knows about him,” Monserrate said.
Safe streets advocate Cristina Furlong and former City Hall staffer Erycka Montoya were removed from the ballot after Moya’s campaign challenged their petition signatures. Both had hearings Tuesday at Queens Civil Court but failed to get the city Board of Elections’ decision overturned.
“It’s sad that Moya needs to kick off the only two women in this race in order to feel like he has a chance to win,” Monserrate said. “I was very supportive of both Montoya and Furlong getting on the ballot. Both deserved the opportunity to run. It’s just sad.”
Montoya said her experience caused a “roller coaster of emotions” and she was exploring ways to get back on the ballot. Furlong said the two women might revive their grass-roots campaigns as Independents.
“It would be difficult because we would have to get all new signatures by Aug. 22,” Furlong said. “What is disappointing is I was really feeling like I was gaining some traction. I don’t want to give up, but you have to consider what’s feasible.”
Reach reporter Bill Parry by e-mail at bparr