September 2, 2009: 2009, Issue 36
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Today’s news:

Seabrook endorses Liu

Councilman Larry Seabrook tossed city comptroller candidate John Liu an unexpected endorsement on Wednesday, August 19 in Co-op City.

“I endorse John Liu!” the 12th Council District incumbent declared. “John is going to win. People in Co-op City love John. John is the leading guy in the black community.”

Seabrook announced the endorsement at a town hall meeting on healthcare reform. He and Liu teamed up to address questions on Obama Care and to defend the president.

Michael Bloomberg for Mayor

The Taiwan-born Liu, who represents Flushing, Queens, has spent eight years on the City Council with Seabrook. Liu chose not to endorse Seabrook at the town hall meeting.

Liu has also won endorsements from Bronx pols Assemblyman Nelson Castro, Assemblyman Peter Rivera and Assemblywoman Naomi Rivera.

“We are here today to talk about the [health insurance] crisis,” Liu said when asked if he had endorsed Seabrook.

Liu later added that he has “learned a lot” from Seabrook. Seabrook has served on the City Council, in the Assembly and in the Senate, the first African American to do so. Liu was the first Asian American elected to the City Council and remains the only elected Asian American in city government.

“John understands minority-owned business better than anyone else,” Seabrook said.

Seabrook split from other Bronx pols when he endorsed Liu. Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., Bronx County Democratic Party boss Assemblyman Carl Heastie and a slew of City Council members have endorsed comptroller candidate Melinda Katz.

On Friday, August 28, Seabrook and Liu returned to Co-op City to screen the 2007 Michael Moore documentary Sicko, an expose of the nation’s healthcare system. Seabrook brought the pizza and Liu the popcorn, a press release quipped. Hundreds of Bronx residents attended.

DC37 has endorsed Seabrook before and will likely endorse him again, in September, a union source shared.

Liu addressed a handful of Bronx issues after the town hall meeting. The former PriceWaterhouseCoopers manager attended Bronx Science and rode the QBx1 bus, he said.

Liu condemned the MTA takeover of private bus lines in the Bronx and the recent termination of express bus fare discounts for Bronx public school students headed to Manhattan. The fare discount elimination is particularly tough on the Bronx, Liu said. Fewer Queens students attend school in Manhattan. There are more subways in Brooklyn.

Liu is opposed to the mayor’s ban on trans fats but is a fan of 311. He’s an enthusiastic supporter of Councilman James Vacca’s parking ticket photo bill. The bill would require parking agents to snap photos of parking violations.

“It needs to be done,” Liu said.

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