At this time last year, the race was expected to be a term-limit driven blood bath, with nearly the entire City Council scrambling to get elected into the few new political positions that they were qualified for, like borough presidencies or assemblymanships. A few were even considering a run for mayor.
Of course, that all changed when Michael Bloomberg decided that he wanted to run for a third term, essentially throwing a spanner into the city’s political works. With everyone in the council allowed to hang onto their seats for another term, and, depending on our mayor’s mood in 2013, indefinitely, there was much less of a reason for our city-level officials to bail after a mere deuce.
The council members who had followed the will of the people and voted against term limits, denouncing what many see as a gross perversion of politics (we’ve heard it described as the first sign of the apocalypse by some less-moderate commentators, and honestly, we’re somewhere in between) have found themselves in something of a pickle.
They’ve got to honor their stand against extending term limits without losing their political clout, and most have them have decided to run for the few city-level spots that will be opening up this November.
None of these cherished, city-level but not City Council positions are as ached for as much as the role of city comptroller. Current comptroller Bill Thompson will be challenging Bloomberg for Mayor, so he will be stepping down from his position at the end of the year, leaving a gaping void in New York City’s infrastructure that our council critters can’t wait to fill.
We can’t imagine why it’s such a popular position, as a comptroller’s roll is little more than a glorified accountant. It’s not as if the chief financial officer for one of the largest cities in the world is in a position to wield influence, collect kickbacks, and make millions of dollars conveniently disappear.
So, without further ado, we provide you, our loyal readers, with our official “Guide to the Glut,” a Pol Position-inspired track sheet of the many, many candidates for New York City Comptroller, and what you need to know about each and every one of them.
John Liu: Representing Flushing as the first Asian-American elected official in the city, Liu is something of a celebrity. Aside from his regular appearances in local newspapers and Chinese media all over the world, he has made several guest appearances on CSI:Miami as a street-smart dope peddler/snitch with a heart of gold.
Qualifications: Top amateur sales analyst for Harry Potter book series sales.
Melinda Katz: Repping Forest Hills, Katz is a descendent of the Katz Deli family and made her own fortune by writing a tell-all cook book revealing her family’s super-secret pastrami recipe. Though her uncle, Dr. Jonathan Katz, a prominent psychologist to the stars, will no longer speak to her because of this, she has remained fiercely loyal to her constituents in Queens and the baker’s dozen of house cats that she keeps in her home.
Qualifications: When asked if she would like to invest with Bernie Madoff, she politely declined.
David Yassky: North Brooklyn’s original bad boy, with guns drawn and cleaned up the Wild, Wild East of Greenpoint and Williamsburg, making the neighborhood once again safe for Civil War-displaced southern matriarchs and honest poker players. His infamous weekly dips in the Newtown Creek went a long way toward changing the troubled inlet’s public image, helping it transform into Brooklyn’s own slice of South Beach.
Qualifications: Can calculate pi to an obnoxious decimal place.
Simcha Felder- Little is known about the masked elected official, but his outside-the-box legislative style has earned him the moniker, “Councilman X.” Last seen clearing out the remaining dragons from the basement of City Hall, he earned popularity in his district by distributing vegetarian sandwiches with the words “Councilman X Kills Dragons” printed on the bread.
Qualifications: Does his own taxes, keeps his checkbook balanced.
David Weprin: Rising to fame as a contestant on Bravo’s Project Runway, Weprin captured the heart of his Eastern Queens district by designing a ball gown with the names of every resident of the Hollis neighborhood that won the final round of the fashion-oriented game show. His major legislative accomplishment was enacting a ban on chicken fried chicken in New York City restaurants because of its superfluous name.
Qualifications: Correctly guessed the number of jelly beans in the jar at a county fair in New Jersey. Donated jelly beans to an orphanage.
And these are only the candidates running in Brooklyn and Queens. Other candidates include baseball legend Tommy Lasorda, former Mayor Ed Koch, television’s Fred “Herman Munster” Gwynne, and current City Comptroller William Thompson. Come November, Pol Position urges its readers to vote wisely and vote often.