At its January 28th meeting, the Board of Elections kicked four candidates off the ballot, including Danniel Maio, Everly Brown and Justina Jaggassur-Ernul. The latter didn’t reach the required 2,000 petition signatures by the necessary filing deadline, while the other two had numerous errors on their petitions that left them without 2,000 signatures.
Anthony Miranda, meanwhile, collected over 9,000 signatures but was removed from the ballot for issues with an amended cover sheet that his campaign manager filed. However, the Miranda campaign appealed the decision, and his name was reinstated.
Afterward, Miranda lashed out at the Democratic Party, specifically the law firm headed by Gerald Sweeney, Michael Reich and Frank Bolz that does so much work for the party, for targeting him for removal, as well as an Asian-American and African-American candidate.
However, it was a commissioner on the Board of Elections who actually raised the concerns over Miranda’s cover sheet. Of course, commissioners are also appointed by the head of the political parties, so draw whatever conclusions you want from that.
So in addition to Miranda, that leaves councilmen Costa Constatinides and Donovan Richards, former councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley, Queens district attorney’s office alum James Quinn and businessman Dao Yin on the ballot.
Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer will still be on the ballot despite dropping out of the race last month.
And while the special election by law is nonpartisan, meaning candidates can’t run on a party line, it appears that Quinn is solidly staking a claim as the “Republican” candidate in the race.
On January 29, days after opening a campaign office in Ridgewood, Quinn announced that a group of six people would serve as co-chairs of his campaign. Among them are Queens GOP chair Joann Ariola and longtime GOP state senator Serf Maltese.
Another co-chair is Councilman Bob Holden, who owes his job to the Queens GOP despite being solidly Democratic.
Holden lost in the Democratic Primary to Crowley, but accepted the Republican Party’s nomination and line for the November general election and won. Once firmly in the City Council, he revealed his true colors and began caucusing with the Democratic Party.
It looks as if Quinn is following a similar playbook by trying to position himself as the conservative choice. He is already campaigning vigorously on his opposition to closing Rikers Island and the recent bail reforms, which should play well to that base.
Speaking of Democrats masquerading as Republicans, we heard from our sources that Councilman Eric Ulrich – the only “Republican” elected official still holding office in Queens – hosted a fundraiser for Councilman Donovan Richards at Russo’s on the Bay recently.
Richards is unequivocally a Democrat, and hosting a fundraiser for him would seem to be at odds with the bent of the Queens GOP, which is apparently supporting Quinn - or at least having the party chair spearheading his campaign would seem to suggest such.
Our sources also tell us that Ulrich is planning to host meet-and-greet events for Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams in Queens to promote the latter’s bid for mayor. Adams is also not running on the Republican line.
We guess the only Republican left in Queens is now a Democrat.