Carolyn Maloney endorses Christine Quinn after paid sick leave criticism
Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney endorsed Speaker Christine Quinn for mayor this morning, despite vigorous criticism just last month of Quinn’s refusal to call a vote on a paid sick leave bill.
Quinn has maintained that the bill does not make economic sense at this time, as opponents to the bill have contended that provisions buried in the legislation would inflict city fines on thousands of additional businesses.
The legislation reportedly gives the Health Department jurisdiction to fine for failing to post noticed in every language spoken by the workforce, and failing to keep records for three years of sick time taken by each worker, as well as penalties for refusing to give employees sick days. It would require employers with more than five employees to provide at least five sick days a year.
Last month, Maloney said, “The facts are enough to make you sick: America is the only industrialized nation in the world that fails to guarantee paid sick leave.”
“Here in New York, we can bypass congressional gridlock, enact paid sick leave, and make the Big Apple a national leader in protecting the health of our citizens,” Maloney declared.
A public hearing on the paid sick leave bill is scheduled for Friday.
Recently, an email was sent out with a statement allegedly from Quinn directing recipients to a fake website and announcing that she “stand[s] with Mayor Michael Bloomberg in opposing paid sick days for New Yorkers.”
The statement went on to say that 83 percent of city residents support paid sick days and a veto-proof majority of the City Council stands ready to approve a paid sick leave bill.
While the de Blasio campaign denied involvement in the fake site and email, spokesman Dan Levitan was quick to call attention to it, emailing a statement to reporters that said, “Whoever is behind this may have an odd sense of humor, but they do have better judgment for what’s right for New Yorkers than Speaker Quinn.”
At this morning’s announcement, Maloney acknowledged her disagreement with Quinn over paid sick leave, but insisted that “this is New York and people don’t always agree” and it’s necessary to “look at the whole picture.”
Quinn’s campaign said that the endorsement does not indicate a change of heart from the Speaker.
A source at the campaign confirmed that the Speaker agrees with paid sick leave in principal but does not believe the current economic conditions are right for it.
Follow Danielle Tcholakian on Twitter @danielleiat