Tags: Assemblywoman | Mayor | De Blasio | Malliotakis

All Eyes on GOP Assemblywoman for Mayor

All Eyes on GOP Assemblywoman for Mayor
Nicole Malliotakis (AP)

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Tuesday, 04 July 2017 08:35 AM Current | Bio | Archive

For the first time in more than four decades, a high-profile elected official in New York will run for mayor on both the Republican and Conservative Party lines.

And given Nicole Malliotakis’ unique niche as the lone woman Republican legislator from New York City, there is growing national attention on the aggressive daughter of Greek and Cuban immigrants as she takes on Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio.

As the filing deadline for the September city primaries approaches this week, state Assemblywoman Malliotakis has wrapped up the Conservative Party nomination. She also is referred nearly always in the press as the “presumptive” Republican nominee against de Blasio. New York is 1 of 5 states in which candidates for office can appear on multiple ballot lines and the votes for each are counted in an aggregate total for that candidate. De Blasio will get votes as a Democrat and as the nominee of the Working Families Party.

At first glance, the defeat of onetime Hillary-for-Senate campaign manager de Blasio by Malliotakis (who was state chairman for Florida senator and presidential hopeful Marco Rubio last year) would seem out of the question. City Democrats have a whopping 3.1 million registered voters, compared to only 470,000 Republicans, and 780,000 who are unaffiliated with any party.

“But this election is not about parties or even ideology but the quality of life in New York City,” Malliotakis told Newsmax this weekend between campaign stops, “and that’s why I will win.”

By “quality of life,” the Republican hopeful means “not getting on the subway terrified of being stuck on the train, not driving in the city afraid of being stuck in traffic, and not having to see the homeless sleeping in streets in what is New York’s worst homeless crisis since the Great Depression.”

Malliotakis told me that the failure of the city’s subway system and its homeless crisis is “a classic example of the left’s misplaced priority. Our property taxes are approximately 24 percent higher than they were when [de Blasio] took office four years ago, and his current city budget is $85.2 billion — compared to $70 billion when he became mayor, and yet, he’s never invested in new technology make our subways run efficiently. We’re using equipment from World War II in the subways which is increasingly breaking down.”

That, Malliotakis vows, “is where I will make a major change.”

To heal mounting spending and taxes, Malliotakis’s prescription is strong and simple: “cut and cap—cut every ounce of excess spending, and I know where to find it, and cap property taxes.”

The proposed cap is not as controversial as it sounds.

“I was a co-sponsor of legislation in Albany providing caps on property taxes in all of the cities outside New York City,” she explained. “The reason the measure covered ‘outside New York City’ is because de Blasio opposed a cap within the city. That will change when I am mayor.”

As it is in other big cities electing mayors in 2017, crime is a major issue in New York. Although de Blasio likes to say that murders have gone down while he has been in city hall, Malliotakis said, “Since he beame mayor in 2013, felony sex crimes have gone up 25 percent, with rape up 4 percent. Misdemeanor sex crimes have gone up 22 percent. Identity theft and fraud have risen 17 percent, and felony assault has risen 2.7 percent. And human trafficking is up 50 percent since last year, with a bigger jump this year.”

She told us she would support the New York City Police “100 percent” and name a commissioner “who works with the rank and file”—a not-so-subtle hint she would replace de Blasio-appointed Commissioner James O’Neill.

On several occasions, Republicans were successful at capturing the office through “fusion” tickets with the left. Republican Mayors John Lindsay (1965-73), Rudy Giuliani (1993-2001), and Michael Bloomberg (2001-13) were all initially elected with the ballot line of the now-defunct Liberal Party and all took left-of-center stands on issues such as gun control, abortion, and taxes. (Bloomberg eventually left the Republican Party and is now an independent.)

But when the GOP tried a center-right coalition with state Sen. John Marchi of Staten Island carrying the Conservative and Republican mayoral nominations, they fared poorly in 1973 and ’77.

But in 2017, New York presents an entirely different political landscape. Along with being forced to play defense on his record, de Blasio is increasingly viewed as a politician who wants to be a player in his party’s national agenda and dialogue. Some de Blasio-watchers believe he might even run for president in 2020.

“That’s not what this campaign is about,” said Malliotakis, who declined to discuss her party’s national agenda. “It’s about a city that is broken and fixing it, which is what I plan to do.”

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.

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Given Nicole Malliotakis’ unique niche as the lone woman Republican legislator from New York City, there is growing national attention on the aggressive daughter of Greek and Cuban immigrants as she takes on Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio.
Assemblywoman, Mayor, De Blasio, Malliotakis
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2017-35-04
Tuesday, 04 July 2017 08:35 AM
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