“In case you hear about it from other people, I am now a political ho,” Chris Owens told the room full of Central Brooklyn Independent Democrats assembled for an endorsement meeting in the basement of the Park Slope Methodist Church on Thursday night. “Now?” asked an incredulous audience member.
The son of the former congressman from the district – a Voting Rights Act district – beyond announcing his new office as a political consultant, was about to clue in his local group of political wonks on news from a recent meeting of district leaders for the Kings County Democratic Party.
Beyond being many things, 2013 is the first big election year in a long time. Particularly the first in many in which Brooklyn’s cycle will not be held at the mercy of the former party boss Assemblyman Vito Lopez (below) thanks to his recent censure over sexual harassment charges. In a way though, he still gets to choose since Seddio’s his man.
The new chosen boss, Assemblyman Frank Seddio (above), has given orders, according to Owens, that the county party will not endorse in any race except for public advocate. The logic is that as the new boss, Seddio does not want to choose poorly in the mayor’s race and upset any of the candidates, lest another win. Nor does he really have a stake in any of the many open seats across the borough, so again, logic goes that he’ll let the party captains duke it out and decide on their own.
“Seddio, I’ll give him credit for this,” continued Owens, “he’s not Vito – the entire atmosphere of being district leader has changed.”
Owens offered, he forsees “incremental cumulative progress over time,” adding that the shift from Lopez to Seddio was akin to the shift from Giuliani to Bloomberg.
“It feels lighter,” he added, “they are more open to rules changes.”
At least with Seddio, another source put it, like Bloomberg, there’s a smile on his face, even if he’s stabbing you in the back.
Going forward though, when delivering his news to the group, Owens made sure to say he’ll point out when he will be using his district leader hat and when he would be shilling for candidates as a paid consultant.
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