The Democratic candidate running for the vacant seat of disgraced ex-Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver claimed to have the endorsements of a slew of high-profile politicians when she sought the support of a prominent Democratic club—even though all but one of them had not backed her.
On a questionnaire for the 504 Democratic club, district leader Alice Cancel listed Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez, Congressman Jerrold Nadler, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, State Senator Daniel Squadron, Councilwoman Rosie Mendez and Councilwoman Margaret Chin under “Key Endorsements.” In fact, only Ms. Mendez had come out publicly behind Ms. Cancel’s candidacy.
Spokespersons for Ms. Velazquez, Mr. Nadler, Ms. Chin and Mr. Squadron all informed the Observer that none of them had endorsed Ms. Cancel. Ms. Maloney could not be reached for comment. Ms. Cancel’s campaign manager, John Quinn, told the Observer that Ms. Mendez is the only official listed who has actually backed her for the seat.
Mr. Quinn said that he had filled out the survey on Ms. Cancel’s behalf, and had mistakenly believed it was asking what political leaders she had supported in the past.
“It was just a screw-up, that’s all it was,” he said. “We always supported all of our local elected officials.”
Mr. Quinn, who is also Ms. Cancel’s husband, was a longtime local ally to Mr. Silver and a leader in the Lower East Side Democrats club. The president of that club, Monica Guardiola—who worked as a community liaison for Mr. Silver for more than a decade—is Ms. Cancel’s treasurer, campaign manager and occasional spokeswoman.
[Few LES political observers hold Team Quinn-Cancel in high esteem.]
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