Spitzer's opponent gets boost from Sen. Gillibrand
July 22nd, 2013
10:56 AM ET
1 year ago

Spitzer's opponent gets boost from Sen. Gillibrand

(CNN) – Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York threw her support Monday behind Scott Stringer, the Democrat and Manhattan borough president competing with Eliot Spitzer in this year's New York City comptroller race.

"I believe Scott Stringer is clearly the best choice to serve New Yorkers as the next comptroller of the City of New York," Gillibrand said in a statement, released by Stringer's team. "Scott will fight hard for middle class families and has the temperament and judgment to be extraordinarily successful."

Stringer was considered the frontrunner in the race until Spitzer, New York's former governor, made his surprising entry into the race earlier this month. Since then, recent polls have indicated Spitzer is now ahead in the race for the Democratic nomination.

It's well documented that Gillibrand and Spitzer haven't been the best of friends. When Gillibrand was in the U.S. House of Representatives, she was among the first Democrats to call for the former governor to resign over his 2008 prostitution scandal.

After Spitzer stepped down, his successor, then-Gov. David Paterson, appointed Gillibrand in January 2009 to the Senate seat vacated by Hillary Clinton, who was tapped to be President Obama's secretary of state.

A year later, Spitzer offered sharp criticism of Gillibrand's job in the Senate, saying in a radio interview he would not have appointed her had he been in office because her views were "too malleable."

A spokesman for Gillibrand reportedly responded by saying, "Because of (Spitzer's) own actions, it wasn't his call to make."

For his part, Stringer has also had some tension with Gillibrand. He considered a primary challenge against the junior senator in 2009, but ultimately decided against it.

On Monday, however, he said he is "thrilled" to have Gillibrand's support. He pointed to the popular senator's work in supporting "transparency in government" and combating sexual assault in the military.

"She has made New York proud with her leadership in the United States Senate, and I could not be more honored to accept her endorsement," Stringer added.

Miram Hess, a senior strategist for Spitzer's campaign, said in response to Gillibrand's endorsement Monday, "While we have a deep respect for the organizations and individuals involved, we know that endorsements don't vote, voters do. No one has better record on reproductive and women's rights than Eliot Spitzer and that's why we're confident that we will continue to enjoy the support of New York voters come election day."

Gillibrand won a special election in 2010 to finish the rest of Clinton's term, and won re-election to the seat in 2012 with 72% of the vote.

The Democratic primary will take place on September 10.

- CNN's Ashley Killough, Kevin Liptak and Peter Hamby contributed to this report.


Filed under: Eliot Spitzer • Kirsten Gillibrand • New York
soundoff (18 Responses)
  1. just sayin

    yeah, i can imagine all of the women aren't too happy with spitzer being ahead in this race. come on democrat women, you cannot possibly support two democrat perverts for office can you?

    July 22, 2013 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  2. Data Driven

    Another reason, if any were needed, to admire Kirsten Gillibrand.

    July 22, 2013 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  3. Rudy NYC

    from the article:

    A year later, Spitzer offered sharp criticism of Gillibrand's job in the Senate, saying in a radio interview he would not have appointed her had he been in office because her views were "too malleable."
    ------------------------
    "Too malleable" means that Gillibrand forms her own opinions on issues, instead of holding a hard line for special interests.

    July 22, 2013 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  4. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    As much as I respect Sen. Gillibrand, I'm sticking with Spitzer. Setting aside Spitzer's scandal, he's clearly the best option for the job. I'm looking at his overall credentials of getting the job done as he did as Attorney General. I'm going off his merits, not name recognition.

    July 22, 2013 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  5. California Gary

    Oh come on........if consorting with a "professional" woman was a disqualifying factor, then virtually everyone who ever served in the military would be ineligible for office. Not that big a deal.......

    July 22, 2013 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  6. Rudy NYC

    I wish that guy from TheRentIsTooDamnHigh party was in the race, for either office. I liked they way he talked. Too radical for my tastes, but he talked about the stuff that nobody wants to pretend isn't really there.

    July 22, 2013 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  7. truth hurts but reality bites

    California Gary
    Oh come on........if consorting with a "professional" woman was a disqualifying factor, then virtually everyone who ever served in the military would be ineligible for office. Not that big a deal.......
    --

    Yeah, not a big deal that a sitting Governor, and former Attorney General, is hiring prostitutes and breaking the very laws he has sworn to uphled. Honestly, the Democrats and liberals have absolutely no standards when it comes to elected officials. They will make excuses for anything short of homocide. Come on New York, get real. Vote for the only honest, responsible person in the race and that is NOT Spitzer.

    July 22, 2013 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  8. Fair is Fair

    Comptroller of NYC...doesn't matter who wins. The city will be in receivership soon, just like Detroit.

    July 22, 2013 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  9. Rudy NYC

    Fair is Fair

    Comptroller of NYC...doesn't matter who wins. The city will be in receivership soon, just like Detroit.
    ----------------
    Why do you say that? NYC is currently run by a Republican for the past 20 years. Detroit has sufered from middle class job losses due to closing or relocated automotive plants. Detroijt was especially hard hit by the mortgage crisis, which eroded a chunk out of its' tax base. Empty homes mean not property taxes collected.

    More recently, Detroit has been under the financial supervision of an Emergency Manager, who was appointed by the state's Repubilcan Governer to help the cash strapped city.

    July 22, 2013 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  10. California Gary

    @truth hurts but reality bites.........tell that to your good senator from the state of Louisiana.........did you call for the resignation of Vitter? Or do these "standards" you are talking about only apply to Dems?

    July 22, 2013 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  11. Do the crime, do the time

    Spitzer hasn't served one second of time for his crimes. Why wasn't he arrested and charged? Why wasn't he put on trial? WHy are rich politicians given a free pass? If we are not going to enfocre our laws equally then get rid of them.

    July 22, 2013 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  12. tellin' it like it is

    Rudy NYC
    Detroit has sufered from middle class job losses due to closing or relocated automotive plants. Detroijt was especially hard hit by the mortgage crisis, which eroded a chunk out of its' tax base. Empty homes mean not property taxes collected.
    More recently, Detroit has been under the financial supervision of an Emergency Manager, who was appointed by the state's Repubilcan Governer to help the cash strapped city.
    --

    But the root of the problem is Demorcat's ran the place for what, 60 years? Cities all over the country have encountered these very same issues but adjusted to get by them. Detriot has refused to do so until they were hopelessly in debt. $18.5 BILLION for a city? Totally insane. $5 billion of unfunded healthcare and $3.5 billion of unfunded pensions, all to the overpaid unions. And what state enshrines their pension benefits in the state constitution? Of course, a union controlled state like Michigan. And then there is all the corruption and mismanagement that is legendary and went on for decades.

    But I'm sure their irresponsible behavior will be rewared by the rest of the US taxpayers in the form of a federal bailout. What's a paltry $18 billion when we're $17 TRILLION in debt already?

    July 22, 2013 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  13. Fair is Fair

    Rudy NYC

    "Why do you say that?"
    ---------
    Data makes me say it, I guess. The primary reason for Detroit's bankruptcy was unfunded pension liability. NYC has unfunded pension liability of $122 billion, or $38,866 per household. The money in the pension fund runs out in 6 years. That doesn't even include unfunded health insurance liability. Doesn't matter who's running or ran the city. And no, it's not just NYC... Boston, L.A., Chicago, Baltimore, Cincinnati...all basket cases. Gotta love public sector unions.

    July 22, 2013 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  14. Thomas

    @Fair is Fair
    Comptroller of NYC...doesn't matter who wins. The city will be in receivership soon, just like Detroit.

    =====

    What other positive predictions can you make .
    We will be welcomed as liberators ?

    July 22, 2013 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  15. Fair is Fair

    Thomas

    @Fair is Fair
    Comptroller of NYC...doesn't matter who wins. The city will be in receivership soon, just like Detroit.

    =====

    What other positive predictions can you make .
    We will be welcomed as liberators ?

    July 22, 2013 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  16. Fair is Fair

    Thomas

    @Fair is Fair
    Comptroller of NYC...doesn't matter who wins. The city will be in receivership soon, just like Detroit.

    =====

    What other positive predictions can you make .
    We will be welcomed as liberators ?
    ------
    Cute. Look at the data. Detroit is only the first of many to come. Lots of big cities going to fiollow suit. I feel bad for the pensioner who's going to take it in the chops. It wasn't their fault the corrupt politicians and public sector unions made promises they couldn't keep. It really sucks to be them.

    July 22, 2013 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  17. telin' it like it is

    Fair is Fair
    And no, it's not just NYC... Boston, L.A., Chicago, Baltimore, Cincinnati...all basket cases. Gotta love public sector unions.
    --

    The answer is simple. Tax all of the residents of these cities to pay for the obligations their elected representatives agreed to. You don't like it, move. They want this stuff, let them all pay for it. Why is it liberals and Democrats love big government yet always want others to pay for it? Of course, big government on somebody elses dime is ALWAYS far moe enjoyable than big government on their own dime.

    July 22, 2013 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  18. Rudy NYC

    I guess unfunded pensions must be the right wing talking point of the week. Seems to be a popular topic.

    Big cities are not unique to the problem of unfunded pensions. There are smaller cities and towns, companies big and bigger, and even some states with unfunded pensions. But pensions everywhere took a major hit when Wall Street collapsed. The pensions lost money, but the pension providers still had to make payments.

    I call that poor management by the trustees of the pension funds. Pension money should have never been invested in high risk investments like the stock market. The high cost of pensions story has been repeated hundreds of times around NYC. True, some pensions were underfunded. Matching deposits were promised, but never made. Again, that is poor pension management, not the fault of the workers.

    July 22, 2013 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |