Marcos Crespo

Bochinche & Buzz: Crespo talks of firsts for Latinos, but …

“When he had a chance to make history and select a Latino to be the first (district attorney) in New York he didn’t.” The bochinchero foamed at the mouth as he roared against Assemblyman Marcos Crespo, the chairman of the Bronx Democratic County Committee.

Crespo, speaking in his role as executive committee chairman of the Puerto Rican & Hispanic Task Force at a reception hosted by state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman on March 24 in Albany, said, “We have to stop all these firsts. … We have to elect Eric Gonzalez as Brooklyn DA.” Meanwhile, another bochinchero was upset that Crespo was meddling into another county’s election.

The larger point made by a few more bochincheros that spoke to B&B is that Crespo chose Darcel Clark who, as reported by NY1 anchor Errol Louis in October 2015, did not disclose her role in the case of Kalief Browder, the Bronx teen who committed suicide earlier that year after he had been held at Rikers Island for three years without trial. “Crespo talks a lot of shit. Back then, he made good on the deal of the previous county chair,” referencing Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, who, as Bronx county chairman, reportedly agreed to give then-District Attorney Robert Johnson a judgeship. The deal – which was denied by all parties involved – was a widely reported bochinche. Johnson, 69, is currently a state Supreme Court judge in Bronx County.

RELATED: Bochinche & Buzz: Can a Republican beat de Blasio?

Finalists in the search for SUNY chancellor

The search for Nancy Zimpher’s replacement as SUNY chancellor – she steps down on June 30 – is down to approximately four finalists. Two bochincheros who spoke to B&B separately – one at the Somos conference in Albany – said that there is one woman and one Latino on the short list. Neither bochinchero gave a name, since, according to both, only a very small group of people know who the finalistas are. The search committee for the largest university system in the U.S. is chaired by SUNY Board of Trustees Chairman H. Carl McCall and has 22 members. A search firm that cost more than $200,000 was hired for the task after Zimpher made her resignation public.

Félix wants Menchaca's seat

There was buzz in Albany that the “City Council bug” has bitten Assemblyman Félix Ortiz. The Brooklyn político is waiting for the state budget to be adopted – he doesn't want his colegas to think he doesn't care about securing his goodies – to announce his run. Bochincheros in Ortiz’s 51st Assembly District tell B&B, "Félix wants the higher salary and to get his son to take over his gig in Albany." Whatever the reason, it appears that New York City Councilman Carlos Menchaca is perceived as vulnerable, since former Assemblyman Javier Nieves (who Ortiz defeated in 1994 for his Assembly seat) has already declared he's going to primary Menchaca for the 38th City Council District. With two known opponents in the race, Menchaca must be muy contento since the buzz is that Ortiz and Nieves would take votes away from each other, leaving the incumbent with a path re-election.

Lhota in Trumpito world?

While Bill Thompson said on last week’s NY1’s Wise Guys that “Joe Lhota is too smart to go to Washington as chief of staff to the president,” two bochincheros who know Lhota well made the argument that their former colega worked successfully with dictatorial executives like Andrew Cuomo, James Dolan and Rudy Giuliani. One of them argued: “Can you imagine any better preparation?” In other words, Lhota could handle control freak loco bosses.

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