Catsimatidis swears at Tea Party president

Gristedes supermarket mogul John Catsimatidis is running for mayor in the 2013 election. Credit: Joseph Victor Stefanchik for The Washington Post via Getty Images.
Gristedes supermarket mogul John Catsimatidis is running for mayor in the 2013 election. Credit: Joseph Victor Stefanchik for The Washington Post via Getty Images.

Supermarket mogul and mayoral hopeful John Catsimatidis lost his temper at a Brooklyn Young Republicans event on Sunday, the Daily News reported.

A questioner reportedly criticized Catsimatidis’ plan for “public-private partnerships” to increase vocational training in schools, asserting that it amounted to stealing money from voters.

Catsimatidis reportedly yelled, “No! No! No!” at the seated questioner, stepping closer to him with every word.

Tea Party President Frank Russo asked Catsimatidis to explain the plan, to which Catsimatidis responded, “Bullsh–!”

“Go bullsh– yourself, if you want!” he reportedly said. “The program is to teach these people the ability to earn a living. OK?”

Russo later said he was disappointed in Catsimatidis’ “grasp of the issues” and noted that running the city is “not an easy job.”

“You’ve got to be cool, calm and collected,” Russo advised.

Echoing another mayoral candidate’s response to being accused of excessive aggression, Catsimatidis dismissed the encounter, saying, “These people are used to deal with people who don’t have courage. I used to confrontation. I don’t blink.”

Democratic candidate Christine Quinn, recently portrayed in a New York Times profile as threatening to staff and colleagues, also said she doesn’t “think being pushy or bitchy or tough, or however you want to characterize it, is a bad thing. New Yorkers want somebody who’s going to get things done.”

A campaign spokeswoman for Republican competitor Joe Lhota, who has been known to use expletives with the press in the past, said, “Anyone running for mayor should be able to offer substantive ideas and solutions to our city’s problems without engaging in irrational and antagonistic exchanges with voters.”

Catsimatidis also released a terrorism-themed radio ad today, exactly two weeks after the Boston Marathon bombings.

“Terrorism: it maims and kills innocent people,” a narrator says in the ad, over the sound of sirens.

The ad goes on to praise stop-and-frisk and surveillance by the NYPD.

“Since 9/11, the NYPD has kept us safe with pro-active police work. Now, career politicians want to end stop and frisk and cut the NYPD’s powers of surveillance,” the narrator continues. “That’s why we need John Catsimatidis for mayor.”

This is Catsimatidis’ second radio ad of the election cycle. The first focused largely on his complicated-sounding last name.

 

Follow Danielle Tcholakian on Twitter @danielleiat


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