Winners & Losers 5/5/17
Remember that email scandal that may have cost Hillary the presidency? New details emerged this week, including the disclosure that Anthony Weiner regularly received confidential emails from his wife, Huma Abedin, to be printed for her boss, Hillary Clinton. Perhaps the scheme was less a nefarious left-wing plot than a stay-at-home hubby helping out his high-powered wife? Either way, Weiner’s such a perennial loser that we looked elsewhere for this week’s Winners & Losers.
Bill de Blasio – It was a week of smooth sailing for the mayor. De Blasio greeted commuters disembarking from some of the first public Rockaway ferry runs, and boasted that the route began operating ahead of schedule. He welcomed $68 million the federal government set aside to reimburse the city and Florida for protecting the first family. And one of his few Democratic primary rivals with experience in elected office dropped out of the race.
Ralph Golden – The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is providing a phenomenal express service to one destination: souped up salaries. The MTA paid out $971 million in overtime last year, and Long Island Rail Road track foreman Ralph Golden benefited the most. He took home an extra $256,155 in overtime, for a total of $360,978 last year.
Letitia James – Mayoral support was never in doubt, but de Blasio signed the public advocate’s salary history ban bill into law on Thursday. Now companies can’t ask about a job applicant’s past salary history, and the fearless James is framing it as a big win for women’s rights. Business groups have threatened lawsuits, but it’s nothing “the litigator” can’t handle.
George Latimer – Given the Democrats’ remarkable inability to seize control of the state Senate, it’s no surprise that not one but two members of the mainline Democratic conference were eyeing a run for Westchester county executive. This week, Latimer, a Democratic state senator who already has his hat in the ring, scored an early victory when the leader of his conference, Andrea Stewart-Cousins, insisted she’s not running.
Jack Martins – Heading into a primary, it never hurts to have a potential opponent who has been arrested on federal bribery charges. The Nassau County Republican Party apparently agrees and has already endorsed former state Sen. Jack Martins for Nassau county executive. Elections on Long Island are often a tight race between Republicans and Democrats, but at least Martins doesn’t have to worry too much about getting to the general.
Bo Dietl – Things are looking very bah humbug for Bo Dietl. GOP leaders decided not to give the mayoral candidate the permission he would need to run in the GOP primary as a nonregistered Republican. He previously failed to qualify for the Democratic primary by attempting to register with two political parties, and winding up a member of neither. So you won’t be seeing him on a major party line anytime soon.
Carmen Fariña – The New York City schools chancellor should think twice before cheating on a test when kids are at risk. City schools used to “flush the pipes” before testing for lead – a practice advised against by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The Department of Education reversed course, tested again, and found out that more than eight times as many water outlets had actionable lead levels than originally reported. Good to know – but should’ve known earlier.
Charles Moorman – Few commuters have positive things to say about their experience at New York Penn Station – and somehow it looks like it’s only going to get worse. After a gun scare at the station, leaking roofs and chronic delays due to outdated infrastructure, Amtrak – which runs the station – is even facing calls for the state to take control. And there’s only more bad news ahead for Moorman, the Amtrak chief: Repairs this summer will cause tracks to shut down for 44 days. Good luck, commuters!
Joseph Ponte – Nothing says freedom like the open road, and New York City correction commissioner loved flaunting his freedom, spending a full 90 days out of state last year. The only problem is he did it in his official city vehicle, breaking rules that routinely get lesser employees suspended. The Daily News called for his suspension, the Post called for his firing … and the mayor called it an honest mistake.
Howard Zucker – When the repeal of Obamacare stalled earlier this year, President Donald Trump said, “Nobody knew health care was so complicated.” Now that New York’s medical marijuana program is struggling, staffers at Zucker’s Health Department might be saying the same thing. Just this week, the agency disclosed that when the state legalized medical marijuana, its licensing panel had little to no professional experience in medical marijuana. This was probably one of those times where it’s not helpful to have things dictated by a control freak.