Condom question trips up mayoral candidates in GOP debate

Condoms tripped up the Republican candidates during a recent debate. Credit: New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene

Republican mayoral hopefuls got a little tongue-tied over a question about the city’s free condoms in a televised debate Wednesday night.

Earlier this month, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn promised to improve the quality of the city’s free condoms, which are widely distributed by the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

“There have been a number of complaints that the condoms distributed by the city are not big enough or strong enough, I wonder if you agree and if you would make it a priority,” CBS2 reporter Marcia Kramer asked Gristedes boss John Catsimatidis.

“Well, uh…” Catsimatidis said nervously to laughter from the audience. His opponents also smiled. “I disagree with Christine Quinn, as far as distributing condoms to underage kids without their parents’ permission.”

“I think we should buy the strongest condoms we can get,” Catsimatidis added with a grin, causing Lhota to shake his head and laugh in disbelief.

Doe Fund founder George McDonald made a point of tying the condom question back to jobs.

“Whatever condoms we use, I want them made in the city of New York. I want to use the purchasing power of the city of New York to create jobs, all kinds of jobs! These are hi-tech jobs — they have to be safe,” McDonald said, smiling.

Former MTA chairman Joe Lhota used the question as an opportunity to blast Quinn.

“I don’t agree with Christine Quinn. You want to see the ultimate in pandering? It’s exactly what Christine Quinn did,” he said, noting the city will continue to distribute condoms. Lhota added that he agreed the condoms should be made in the city.

It should be noted that everyone, including the debate moderators, giggled a lot during this discussion. It should also be noted that city health officials take the condom issue seriously.

Also during the debate, the candidates sparred about the city’s stop-and-frisk policy.

When asked whether their opinion of the police department’s controversial stop-and-frisk practice would change if their own children were stopped, the candidates still agreed on its merits for the most part.

Catsimatidis said he would ask his son what he was doing to get stopped, while Lhota said he would go over the protocol with his daughter.

“My son John isn’t going to get stopped,” McDonald said. “That’s the whole point.”

The whole debate can be viewed here.

Follow Anna Sanders on Twitter: @AnnaESanders


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Oval oasis: Summer of fun kicks off this…

A bold partnership between the Fairmount Park Conservancy and the city's Parks and Recreation Department is kicking off this weekend with family activities re-activating this unused public space.

Local

African couple claiming misidentification in robbery case to…

At a bail hearing today for Vickson and Lorfu Korlewala, charged in the robbery of an 80-year-old woman, bail was reduced from $1 million total to $500,000.

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.

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…

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

Shane West talks WGN America's 'Salem'

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

Music

Both feet on the ground with Aimee Mann…

What began with a cool double-bill of Ted Leo opening for Aimee Mann morphed into a full-fledged collaborative project that they're calling The Both. “There…

MLB

Jimmy Rollins is key to Phillies success

When John Kruk was asked about what the Phillies need to contend for a playoff berth, the ESPN analyst said Jimmy Rollins needs to play like a MVP again.

MLB

Ben Revere lifts Phillies to avoid sweep

Ben Revere came through with a two-out RBI single against Atlanta’s tough lefthander Alex Wood.

NBA

Season wrap: 76ers make the grade

The 76ers opened the 2013-14 season with a victory over the Miami Heat. The Sixers closed the season with a win at Miami.

NBA

Fantasy basketball: Finding next year's NBA studs

Before we put the 2013-14 fantasy basketball season to bed, it’s worth thinking about next year’s breakouts while they’re fresh in our mind.

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.