Lhota campaign questions de Blasio Teamsters endorsement

Joe Lhota is questioning Bill de Blasio's endorsement from a coalition of teamsters unions, including the one for horse carriage drivers. Both de Blasio and Lhota have vowed to get rid of horse-drawn carriages when they take office. Credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images
Joe Lhota is questioning Bill de Blasio’s endorsement from a coalition of 33 teamsters unions, including the one for horse carriage drivers. Both de Blasio and Lhota have vowed to get rid of horse-drawn carriages when they take office.
Credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Joe Lhota’s mayoral campaign is crying foul on one of Bill de Blasio’s newest endorsements, from a coalition of 33 teamsters unions.

The Lhota campaign noted that one of those unions is for the drivers of the Central Park horse-drawn carriages, “the very industry [de Blasio] has vowed to abolish.”

Horse-drawn carriages are a political hot button issue in New York City, where the animal advocacy organization NYCLASS has become a force to be reckoned with and a sought-after endorsement.

NYCLASS proposes replacing the horses with “a clean and safe alternative to this outdated tradition — the 21st Century Horseless Carriage.” They were responsible for a vicious campaign of attack ads against Christine Quinn that reportedly cost $774,000, and several news outlets wrote about the de Blasio campaign raking in almost $15,000 in campaign donations from NYCLASS members after changing his tune on the issue.

The Lhota campaign noted that de Blasio had until recently sided with the horse carriage drivers, in favor of keeping the horse-drawn carriages. But at a mayoral forum before the primary election, he vowed to “ban the horses carriages in Central Park within the first week on the job.”

In fact, de Blasio had a confrontation with carriage drivers just a few days before the primary election that involved a representative from Teamster Joint Council 16, the coalition of 33 teamsters union that endorsed the Democrat on Wednesday.

“Mr. de Blasio is trying to play both sides,” Lhota spokeswoman Jessica Proud declared. “This is exactly the kind of thing that drives people crazy about career politicians. He owes both sides and the public an explanation.”

But on Thursday, Teamsters Joint Council 16 spokesperson Nell O’Connor stood firm by the coalition’s de Blasio endorsement when questioned about the candidate’s position on the carriage issue. She said de Blasio is “obviously… the labor candidate.”

“We agree more than disagree with Bill,” she said. “We represent hundreds of thousands of teamsters. We represent a number of other industries; Bill has been great for some of those industries.”

That is not to say they are totally on board with his anti-carriage position, however.

“We will continue to advocate and fight for the horse carriages and hopefully he’ll listen,” she added.

 

Follow Danielle Tcholakian on Twitter @danielleiat


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
News

Mets mascot Mr. Met target of Bill Clinton…

Mets mascot Mr. Met has told how he ended up in the crosshairs of a Secret Service sniper rifle. The man behind the Mr. Met…

International

Jews in eastern Ukraine ordered to register, Kerry…

Secretary of State John Kerry condemned reports that Jews in eastern Ukraine had been ordered to register with the authorities "or suffer the consequences."

National

Chelsea Clinton pregnant with first child

Chelsea Clinton is pregnant with her first child.

National

Divers struggle in search for South Korean ferry…

By Jungmin Jang and Narae KimMOKPO/JINDO, South Korea (Reuters) - Rescuers struggled with strong waves and murky waters on Thursday as they searched for hundreds…

Movies

Review: 'Transcendence' is not stupid but sometimes lacks…

The cyberthriller "Transcendence" explores artificial intelligence, nanotechnology and other ethical quandaries, but has too much ambition, if anything.

Television

Dick Wolf to bring fictionalized world of 'Law…

A&E has ordered a pilot called "D.O.A." from "Law and Order" mastermind Dick Wolf that will focus on real detectives reexamining cold cases. A trio…

Television

Shane West talks WGN America's 'Salem'

The actor on history lessons, a new network and showing his butt.

Movies

Review: 'Fading Gigolo' finds few jokes in women…

John Turturro writes, directs and stars in "Fading Gigolo," in which he plays a prostitute whose pimp is Woody Allen. And there's still very few jokes.

NHL

Rangers draw first blood against Flyers in Game…

Brad Richards and Derek Stepan scored power-play goals 47 seconds apart to lead the Rangers to a 4-1 win.

NBA

Carmelo Anthony agonizing over Knicks future as season…

There’s still the cloud hanging over the franchise’s head as to the pending free-agent status of All-Star forward Carmelo Anthony.

NFL

Jets host players with eye toward NFL Draft

The Jets hosted a number of NFL Draft hopefuls for workouts on Thursday, with an eye toward some under-the-radar players.

NFL

Chris Johnson: I wanted to go to 'a…

Now that Chris Johnson is a Jet, the team has to figure out if one of the most explosive players in the NFL over the last half decade has anything…

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.

Travel

Earth Day travel in the Florida Keys

See why this eco-friendly destination deserves your attention.

Tech

Sorry, Facebook — FarmVille goes mobile with 'Country…

Zynga has released a version of the hit "FarmVille" tailored for smartphones and tablets in the hope of reaping a bumper crop of players.