Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Following up on the Markowitz campaign fine: two editorials criticize him; Brooklyn Paper suggests wife is First Lady; poll (taken before fine surfaced) shows BP high in 2013 Mayoral rice

That $20,000 fine levied against Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz for letting his wife get her expenses paid on three international trips--despite explicit advice to the contrary (which he ignores)--is still provoking discussion.

The Daily News reports, in Irked Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz: Change city travel law, that Markowitz is hoping for the City Council to allow spouses to travel for free. Council Members say that's unlikely.

Is Jamie "First Lady" of Brooklyn?

In an editorial, Marty Markowitz scores another Knucklehead Award for trying to pass off his wife as first lady of BK, the Daily News simply says Markowitz is wrong, without noting how the judge in the case contrasted Jamie Markowitz's duties with that of a real First Lady.

After all, the Brooklyn Paper, in Jamie Markowitz is indeed our ‘First Lady’, reports that "anyone who knows Brooklyn and its Beep agrees with him."

I'm not so sure about that, but the newspaper did find several supporters:
“His wife is a part of everything he does,” said Community Board 15 Chairwoman Theresa Scavo. “It’s baloney for the judge to say that she doesn’t belong.”

Jamie Markowitz doesn’t have an official title or assigned aides like the First Lady of the United States, but she has mastered the age-old adage that 90 percent of success is just showing up.

The queen of Kings County is constantly at the Beep’s side at important Brooklyn events. For instance, there she was on Sunday as the first gay weddings were held at Borough Hall. And our shutterbugs are always snapping her at galas for Prospect Park and the Brooklyn Museum.
Keep in mind that one excuse for bringing his wife on international trips is that Markowitz considers himself "not a good flyer."

Who pays for his defense/fine?

The Post, in an editorial headlined Marty Mark's freebies, writes:
Brooklyn Beep Marty Markowitz says he's paying that $20,000 Conflicts of Interest Board fine just levied against him out of his own pocket.

That's a surprise.

Because he has taken a different approach with the far-heftier sum he spent on lawyers trying to fight the case -- which involves free trips enjoyed by his wife as she tagged along on his "official business."

In fact, a spokesman admitted, the $125,000 he's doled out from his campaign treasury to lawyers went "in part" to representation before the COIB.

"In part" doubtless means most of it.
Mayoral run?

Markowitz, likely due to his name recognition, scored high in a Quinnipiac University poll of potential 2013 mayoral candidates conducted last week.

Presumably those numbers would fall off a bit after this week's publicity.

From the press release:
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly is A Number 1 in an early look at the 2013 New York City mayoral race, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Kelly gets 23 percent, including 17 percent among Democrats, when the independent Quinnipiac University poll asks New York City voters who they most want to see elected mayor in 2013. Other results are:
  • City Council Speaker Christine Quinn - 18 percent, including 20 percent of Democrats;
  • Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz - 12 percent, with 14 percent of Democrats;
  • City Comptroller John Liu - 10 percent, with 10 percent of Democrats;
  • 2009 Mayoral candidate William Thompson - 8 percent, with 9 percent of Democrats;
  • Public Advocate Bill de Blasio - 6 percent, with 7 percent of Democrats;
  • Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer - 4 percent, with 5 percent of Democrats.
If Kelly does not run, Quinn goes to the head of the class, with 23 percent of voters, including 24 percent of Democrats. Other results are:
  • Markowitz - 15 percent, with 16 percent of Democrats;
  • Liu - 13 percent, with 13 percent of Democrats;
  • Thompson - 10 percent, with 10 percent of Democrats;
  • de Blasio - 8 percent, with 9 percent of Democrats;
  • Stringer - 5 percent, with 6 percent of Democrats.

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