* The defendants are starting to fight among themselves in the upcoming trials for the broad-based conspiracy and fraud case that snagged Sen. Carl Kruger and Assemblyman William Boyland Jr. Kruger’s lawyer Benjamin Brafman has already filed for a separate trial for his client, on grounds it would allow co-defendant Solomon Kalish to “completely exonerate Sen. Kruger with his testimony.” On Tuesday, Kalish’s lawyer Adrian DiLuzio also petitioned for a separate trial to avoid “spillover prejudice” from the other alleged co-conspirators. DiLuzio wrote that Brafman will call Kalish a liar, and that jurors may adopt “the commonsense curse of a ‘Plague on both their houses,’ represented by the mixing of one seemingly unrelated set of criminal offenses with another.”
* Two district leader candidates backed by Assemblyman Keith Wright, the Manhattan Democratic Party chair, and a slew of other Harlem elected officials suffered surprising under-the-radar defeats in the Sept. 13 elections. In one race, Jamaal Nelson beat two other candidates, Brian Benjamin and Michael Adams, for an open seat. Benjamin had the support of Wright and Rep. Charles Rangel, and Adams had the support of Sen. Bill Perkins – who is seen by some as a Wright rival – but Nelson emerged victorious with almost no establishment support outside of former Mayor David Dinkins. Adams suggested his third-place finish was successful because he split the vote and tripped up Wright’s candidate, but the Manhattan Democratic chairman dismissed the notion. “How you can turn that into a win, I don’t know,” said Wright. “There is no feud between Sen. Perkins and myself.” Meanwhile, in perhaps an even bigger upset, nearly two-decade incumbent April Tyler, who was backed by Wright and others, lost to Marisol Alcantara. It didn’t help that Tyler was actually out of town on Election Day, working as a paid consultant in Mount Vernon. Wright, though, did have at least one piece of good news: all 10 judicial candidates he backed won.
* Kirsten Foy, the director of community relations for Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, is exploring running for City Council – and he would have the opportunity to take the plunge in the near future. Foy confirmed he lives in the Brooklyn Council district currently represented by Al Vann, who is term-limited in 2013. Foy’s stature has risen since he and Councilman Jumaane Williams were arrested on early this month, prompting a New York Times profile. Foy declined to comment on his future plans, but if he does run, he would certainly be a strong contender for the backing of the Working Families Party, which has proven key in Council primary elections. Foy is a former staffer for the Rev. Al Sharpton‘s National Action Network, and Sharpton has developed a close alliance with the WFP in recent years. Still, Foy or any other candidate could be dissuaded by the sheer amount of people wanting to run: insiders say the field is likely to be even more crowded than it was in 2009, when seven people ran against Vann.
CITY & STATE FIRST READ is our morning email roundup of New York politics and government. Every day before 7 a.m. we deliver daily exclusives from City Hall and The Capitol, a curated summary of the day’s headlines, editorials, schedules and milestones – and short tidbits like the “Heard Around Town” items below.
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Tags: Adrian DiLuzio, Al Sharpton, Al Vann, April Tyler, Benjamin Brafman, Bill De Blasio, Bill Perkins, Brian Benjamin, Carl Kruger, Charles Rangel, City Council, co-defendants, conspiracy, David Dinkins, democrats, district leader, fraud, Jamaal Nelson, Jumaane Williams, Keith Wright, Kirsten Foy, Manhattan, Marisol Alcantara, Michael Adams, National Action Network, Solomon Kalish, william boyland, Working Families Party
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