Republican candidate runs for Garodnick’s City Council seat

Rebecca Harary at her campaign launch event on March 29 with Council Member Joseph Borelli of Staten Island (Photos courtesy of Rebecca Harary)

By Sabina Mollot

Last Wednesday, Upper East Sider and nonprofit founder Rebecca Harary officially launched her campaign for the City Council seat soon to be vacated by Dan Garodnick.

Harary, who last year ran for Assembly in the 73rd District, is the first candidate to officially declare she’s running as a Republican. Self-described “progressive Conservative” Melissa Jane Kronfeld previously told Town & Village she hadn’t yet committed to running on the GOP ticket, only saying she would not run as a Democrat.

Harary, however, has the backing of Manhattan GOP and has also collected a couple of endorsements from Republican City Council members as well as former Governor George Pataki.

The mother of six this week spoke with Town & Village about her priorities if elected, and why running as a Republican in a mostly Democratic city and district isn’t the lost cause it might appear to be.

When running for Assembly, though she ended up losing to incumbent Dan Quart, she did get the highest number of votes for a Republican running for that position since 2000.

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Maloney’s opponent calls national debt, gridlock top issues

Robert Ardini said he’s moderate on social issues, conservative on fiscal ones. Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Robert Ardini said he’s moderate on social issues, conservative on fiscal ones. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

In November, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney will be facing off against a Republican challenger named Robert Ardini, a former marketing executive and a resident of Long Island City.

Ardini, who spoke with Town & Village about his campaign last week, said he decided to run last fall mainly because he doesn’t feel enough is being done to reduce national debt, paving the way for an economic crisis, but also, he added, “I don’t believe our founding fathers intended for anyone to run for 23 consecutive years.”

However, since Ardini knows that in order to even have a shot at beating the popular incumbent (who recently clobbered her primary opponent with nearly 90 percent of the vote), he’s already begun the process of trying to appeal to Democrats.

The 55-year-old is positioning himself as a candidate who’s fiscally conservative but socially moderate. His top priority is reducing the national debt, followed by ending the gridlock in Washington, but, he noted, he’s also for a woman’s right to choose and supports gay marriage (so long as that union is called something else).

Recently, he had postcards made up with the tagline “A moderate Republican even a Democrat can like,” requesting that Republicans in the district mail it to a Democrat friend.

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Republican voters left confused by letter with suggested write-in judicial candidates

Attorney Helene Jnane, who ran for City Council in 2013, had her name appear in a rogue Republican slate. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Attorney Helene Jnane, who ran for City Council in 2013, had her name appear in a rogue Republican slate. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

This year’s Election Day was a quiet one with only judicial candidates running in Manhattan and many uncontested.

However, in an effort to shake up what was locally a one-party election, a Republican District Leader for the 74th Assembly District sent out letters urging republicans to vote for members of their own party, anyway.

The problem? The letter ended up causing some confusion, with at least a couple of Stuyvesant Town residents who received it believing there were actually Republican candidates running.

One copy of the letter was received by a republican voter who later contacted Town & Village to ask why those candidates could only be chosen by having their names written in on an absentee ballot.

“That seems like fraud to me,” she fumed.

The letter from Robert Fiore, a resident of East 23rd Street, had said the election presented an “interesting opportunity for Republican write-in candidates due to expected low voter turnout for Democrats. Here are our Republican Write-In candidates for the Manhattan judicial races Tuesday, November 3.”

He then listed the candidates for Supreme Court justice as: Helene Jnane, Paul Niehaus, Robert L. Morgan, Robin Weaver and Peter C. Hein. Jnane, who ran a campaign for City Council in 2013 against Dan Garodnick, was also listed as a candidate for Civil Court judge.

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