De Blasio a main target during Democratic mayoral candidate debate

Democratic primary candidates for Mayor of New York City, Christine Quinn, Bill Thompson, Erick Salgado and Bill de Blasio face off with Anthony Weiner, Sal Albanese and John Liu for the first debate at the Town Hall Wednesday, August 21, 2013.  Credit: Ruth Fremson/ The New York Times
From left, Democratic primary candidates for mayor of New York City Christine Quinn, Bill Thompson, Erick Salgado and Bill de Blasio face off against Anthony Weiner, Sal Albanese and John Liu at Town Hall on Wednesday.
Credit: Ruth Fremson/The New York Times

Public Advocate Bill de Blasio became a target for his opponents in the second major Democratic primary debate of the election season Wednesday night on NY1.

While last week’s debate saw more attacks against former Congressman Anthony Weiner and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, recent polls have shown de Blasio as a frontrunner among voters.

During the debate, de Blasio’s rivals painted him as a flip-flopping late-to-the-game politician on several issues, including hospital closures, which was the subject of the first slam of the night.

“Bill, you’ve been great the last few weeks on the hospital closures. But where were you for the first three years of your public [advocate tenure]?” City Comptroller John Liu said. “It goes without saying … let’s be real here, let’s set the record straight.”

In discussing taxes and school funding, former City Comptroller Bill Thompson also took a swing at de Blasio.

“Let’s be honest with the public tonight. If we’re going to have a real conversation, let’s tell the truth, Bill. No more of the flip-flop, or saying things when it’s politically convenient for you,” Thompson said. “Will the real Bill de Blasio please stand up?”

At one point, when candidates were allowed to ask each other questions, Thompson and Quinn even tag-teamed de Blasio, slamming him for a campaign ad claiming he was the “only candidate” who supported ending the stop-and-frisk era.

“Bill, the New York Times has reported that that ad is inaccurate. Why don’t you take that ad down, Bill?” Thompson said. “Stop lying to the people of New York City.”

De Blasio responded that he was the the only candidate who would do three things to end the controversial police practice, including removing Police Comissioner Ray Kelly, installing an inspector general for the police and supporting the anti-bias bill vetoed by Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Quinn then stepped in.

“My question is to Comptroller Thompson,” Quinn said. “I want to know if you’re satisfied with the answer you just got.”

Thompson said he wasn’t satisfied and added the response was a “part of a pattern” of dishonesty.

De Blasio joked of the attacks, “In professional wrestling they allow tag teams.”

Throughout the debate, Weiner had to deflect fewer attacks from rivals and managed to get a few laughs from the audience when he said he would support drinking alcohol on stoops, parks and beaches.

Relatively unknown candidates former Brooklyn City Councilman Sal Albanese and the Rev. Erick Salgado at many times decried having less time to speak or less opportunities to air their opinions.

The entirety of debate can be viewed here.

Follow Anna Sanders on Twitter: @AnnaESanders



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Sprint and T-Mobile offer further price discounts

Sprint unveiled a plan on Thursday that gives subscribers access to unlimited data for $60 a month, the industry's cheapest unlimited data offering.

National

Hundreds pay it forward at Florida Starbucks in…

The spontaneous chain of kindness continued for about 11 hours, totaling 457 transactions by the time it ended.

National

Weather system east of Caribbean could turn into…

An area of low pressure located east of the Caribbean Sea has a 50 percent chance of becoming a tropical depression or storm in the next 48 hours, U.S. forecasters…

National

U.S. hospital to discharge doctor treated with experimental…

An American doctor who contracted Ebola treating victims of the deadly virus in Liberia has recovered and will be discharged on Thursday by the Atlanta hospital that treated him with…

Movies

Review: 'When the Game Stands Tall' is both…

The high school football saga "When the Game Stands Tall" fumbles around for a focus while Jim Caviezel offers the most low-key coach in history.

Movies

Girlfriend in a coma: Chloe Grace Moretz

Chloe Grace Moretz is the best cheerleader "If I Stay" could ask for. As the star of the film adaptation of the successful YA novel…

The Word

The Word: Summer lovin' for Zac Efron and…

Ah, the summer romance. So intense, so fleeting. With Labor Day fast approaching, it should come as little surprise that the incredibly surprising romance between…

The Word

The Word: The Zac Efron-Michelle Rodriguez summer fling…

  Ah, the summer romance. So intense, so fleeting. With Labor Day fast approaching, it should come as little surprise that the incredibly surprising romance…

NFL

Fantasy football draft guide: How to draft your…

Many are wondering if we’re entering a new age in fantasy football drafting — one where running backs take a backseat.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Giants storylines to watch

The Giants have plenty to work on as they reach the dress rehearsal preseason game Friday night against the rival Jets.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Jets storylines to watch

Metro looks at three Jets storylines to watch as they play the Giants Friday.

NFL

Giants expected to work Corey Washington into first-team…

The day of reckoning for the Giants' fringe players will fall upon them Friday night against the Jets.

Sex

Big weddings may lead to long-term happiness

Dreaming of a big wedding? A new study indicates that the longer your guest list, the happier you’ll be in the long run. l A…

Sex

Online dating for every generation

Frank Jackson and his mother Maggie are like lots of modern families: They have dinner together regularly, keep each other updated on their lives —…

Wellbeing

Going green could be the key to getting…

If we could just pursue the things that would actually make us happy, we could help the environment too, according to a New York researcher.…

Tech

Siren: A new dating app that puts women…

Online dating can be brutal, especially for single women. Noting that many women hate wading through inappropriate messages and photos, two tech entrepreneurs decided to…