After a rare "kumbaya" moment and request from the mayoral candidates, the Campaign Finance Board rescheduled the final general election debate for Wednesday to respect the first anniversary of Superstorm Sandy.
The decision was made Sunday night, just hours after Democratic candidate Bill de Blasio and Republican Joe Lhota said in a joint statement, "This day should be marked with solemn reflection and remembrance."
De Blasio and Lhota continued that postponing the debate was "the most respectful and appropriate way to honor the memories of those who were lost, and to stand with those who are still struggling to recover."
Amy Loprest, executive director of the New York City Campaign Finance Board, said in a statement four hours later that New Yorkers are still feeling the effects of the storm.
"The next mayor will be responsible for helping the affected families recover, and for helping a wounded city become more resilient," Loprest said. "The first anniversary of Sandy's landfall can serve to focus this discussion about the future of our city. Out of respect to those who are still rebuilding, we join all New Yorkers in commemorating the storm on Tuesday."
The scheduling change, which will require the use of a smaller studio, was unexpected. The debate schedule was announced in June and neither candidate expressed any formal interest to move the debate until Sunday, two days before it was scheduled to air.
The 90-minute debate, sponsored by NBC 4 New York, Telemundo Nueva York and The Wall Street Journal, will be aired 7 p.m. Wednesday on WNBC Channel 4, other television and cable outlets, streamed onlineand on the radio. The last 30 minutes will not be aired on network television.
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