NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — There are just two weeks to go until the Sept. 10 primary for the New York City mayoral hopefuls.
As WCBS 880′s Paul Murnane reported Tuesday, on the Democratic side, the fight is on for support from black voters.
Bill Thompson, the only black candidate in the race, spent the morning campaigning outside the Grand Army Plaza subway station.
Thompson’s new ad focuses on reforms he’d make to the controversial stop-and-frisk program.
“Nothing’s more important than keeping our city safe and treating our people with respect. No one needs to explain that to me. I’ve lived it,” Thompson says in the ad.
In the ad, the former city comptroller takes on opponent Bill de Blasio, who has been a fierce critic of stop-and-frisk, for what Thompson called misleading claims.
“It’s not the same thing to say I don’t support stop and frisk, but I don’t support a legal ban on profiling. So we have a fundamental difference on the issue on to go about making change,” de Blasio told CBS 2′s Marcia Kramer.
“It’s Bill de Blasio playing with words. It isn’t a question of legislation, it’s a question of courage and conviction and as mayor I have the courgage and conviction to make sure people’s rights aren’t violated,’ Thompson said.
On Tuesday, Thompson tried to woo voters in Brooklyn.
At the subway stop, Clarice Mathews was relentless with Thompson, Murnane reported.
MATHEWS: “Tell me why I should vote for you, sincerely.”
THOMPSON: “I’m the best qualified person to be the next mayor.”
Thompson went on to tout his background and track record.
A recent poll shows African-American voters are split between Thompson, de Blasio and Christine Quinn in the mayoral race.
De Blasio has featured his biracial son, Dante, in a campaign ad.
“Bill de Blasio will be the mayor for every New Yorker no matter where they live or what they look like and I’d that’s even if he weren’t my dad,” Dante says in the ad.
An estimated 58 percent of the turnout in the Democratic primary is expected to be from the minority community.
Pundits told Kramer that since the black vote could amount to about 30 percent of the people who show up at the polls on primary day, the Thompson “lived it” coming on the heels of the “Dante” ad could be critical for Thompson.
“He needs to get the black support and needs to get blacks voters out to the primary. It’s crucial in the Democratic primary that he get them out and him wins decisively. Bill de Blasio has other constituents he can look to,” Iona College’s Jeanne Zaino said.
Quinn chose to go after de Blasio as well on Tuesday, charging that when he was on the city council he flip-flopped on term limits. Before he led a campaign against term limits he was for them, Kramer reported.
“Bill de Blasio in 2005 when he was running for speaker was very clear. He committed, promised, to extend term limits. Why did he do that? Because he was running for speaker of the city council and he was trying to get voters from councilmen,” Quinn said.
If no candidate wins 40 percent of the vote in the primary, the top two will face off in a runoff election for the nomination.
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