Curtis Sliwa: Who is the Republican candidate for the New York municipal elections in 2021?


The next mayor of the country’s largest city has his work cut out for millions of residents out of a public health emergency and tackle the worsened crisis exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic.

Democrat Eric Adams – the president of the Brooklyn Borough, former state lawmaker and retired New York City Police Department captain – is frontrunner to win in the largely Democratic city. He will be New York’s second black mayor, if elected.

Republican Curtis Sliwa – a radio personality and founder of the controversial Guardian Angels volunteer subway patrol – faces a tough odds of winning in a city where Democratic voters are nearly eight to one.

Mr Sliwa pursued an enthusiastic bid against his well-funded Democratic rival, whom Mr Sliwa criticized as being out of touch with working-class residents. Mr Adams called his opponent’s campaign fundamentally insignificant and promoted a campaign focused on issues of gun violence and economic development.

The candidates offer radically different platforms on many issues, from vaccine mandates to the future of Rikers Island and to alfresco dining, but they praised each other for their respect for animals: Mr. Adams is a vegan and Mr. Silwa is a longtime animal welfare advocate. .

Advance voting is now underway and polling day is November 2. Several other long-standing mayoral candidates are joining the ballot, which also includes elections for city council, public attorney, district attorney and other ballot measures.

Who is Curtis Sliwa?

Mr Sliwa’s mayoral campaign follows a parade of tabloids, offensive language, a mob stunt and his more than 40-year mission to tackle crime on the city’s streets and subways .

Its rise is fueled by the relentless self-promotion and international spread of its Guardian Angels, a group of volunteer street and subway patrollers wearing matching jackets, tracksuits and berets – praised by its anti-crime supporters and criticized for allegations that it is made up of reactionaries and vigilantes targeting young black and brown New Yorkers.

Mr. Sliwa’s campaign – carried out largely from the 320-square-foot Manhattan apartment he shares with his wife and their 16 rescue cats – has held daily events, hoping to attract more attention to its program.

Mr. Sliwa grew up in the Canarsie Panhandle in southeast Brooklyn, where he worked as a newspaper delivery boy and “junk man” recycling neighborhood trash as the premier recycling advocate.

After moving to the Bronx in the late 1970s, where he ran a McDonald’s in the Fordham Heights neighborhood, he started a graffiti cleanup team, the predecessor of his Magnificent 13 Subway Safety Patrol, later named the Guardian Angels. .

After surviving five shots in an apparent execution attempt by a powerful organized crime family in 1992, M. a public transport police officer – to bolster the reputation of the Angels.

Mr. Sliwa became a staple of talk radio over the following years, cementing his reputation as a local figure. More recently, he has been criticized for wearing a sombrero and imitating Latino immigrants and making sexist remarks against a member of the city council. He apologized for both incidents in June.

He mounted a bid for mayor as a Republican, seeing few other options to enter the race. He does not support Donald Trump and he has dismissed the GOP’s baseless electoral fraud narrative, although it has received approval from Rudy Giuliani. Mr. Sliwa considers himself a “populist”.

Mr Sliwa’s campaign has sought to entice animal lovers with one of the country’s largest animal welfare platforms, including establishing safe haven policies without killing.

His argument for flattening crime in the young, largely black and brown neighborhoods of the city, is in “behavior modification” in “dysfunctional” homes and neighborhoods, he said. The independent earlier this year. He also pledged to hire more NYPD agents and “pay off” the agency after $ 1 billion was transferred from its $ 6 billion budget.

He opposes the closure of the Rikers Island prison complex, which is currently scheduled to close by 2026 as part of a city plan.

Mr. Sliwa also proposed a pilot for a universal basic income program; spending would be closely monitored by the city to determine whether beneficiaries “lack self-control” to spend it wisely to “maintain themselves,” he said The independent earlier this year.

With around 48,000 people homeless on any given night in New York, including nearly 15,000 children, Sliwa wants to end what he calls the “storage” of homeless people by tackling the problems of homelessness. addiction and mental health and building new permanent supportive housing. He also proposed to reopen Camp LaGuardia, a 1,000-bed, 258-acre complex built from a former women’s prison.

Mr Sliwa, who is vaccinated against Covid-19, opposes vaccination requirements for city workers and public school students.

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