The latest bochinche is that term-limited City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito will be challenging el congresista José E. Serrano. This column has mentioned others who think the veteran and aging member of the New York congressional delegation can be easy picking. Pero, a Bronx bochinchero and I had a telephone conversation recently in which he said, “The guy that can beat Serrano is Marcos Crespo.” According to the well-versed insider, “If anyone is going to take Serrano out, it’s not going to be someone from Manhattan.”
Reminded that MMV’s district extends into the Bronx, the insider replied, “She’s from Manhattan and everyone that votes in that district knows it.” Crespo is rumored to be looking at the borough president’s office and “he’s definitely interested in Congress.” If the young, energetic, popular and articulate Crespo decides to challenge Serrano, he will have additional clout as chairman of the Bronx County Democratic Party. Which means MMV and others, including Serrano, couldn’t count on county support. Marcos?
De Blasio wants a say in picking próximo speaker
Don’t make any final choices, muchachos. Two insider bochincheros in New York City’s men's-only club of speaker candidates have told me that Mayor Bill de Blasio is letting it be known that no final choices should be made until he can make his choice known. Ha! A contender in the race verified that the mayor is dialing key players, including the five Democratic county leaders. “His choice is Mark (Levine),” one bochinchero told me. However, a close collaborator of the Upper Manhattan councilman indicated that “Corey (Johnson) is spinning that and I’m saying it's not true.” As of this writing, Levine and Johnson are perceived as being the front-runners in the selection process that excludes everyday neoyorquinos. The question to the ocho hombres is: Why would any of them want the unpopular, soon-to-be-lame-duck mayor’s support? From what I hear, it’ll be the bacio della morte to their candidacy.
Más Cuomo MTA board members in the works?
According to an Albany bochinchero, Gov. Andrew Cuomo has at least three new members that he wants to bring on to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority board. “If he can get at least two on, he’ll be OK. But if he gets all three, he’ll be happy,” said one bochinchero. First of all, it’s kind of hard imagining him completely happy unless he gets full control of the board. He already has six of the members in his pocket. His nemesis, aka Bill de Blasio, has four. While I trust the info the bochinchero provided, I’m not sure that Cuomo has this locked up. The one bochinchero that could answer that isn’t answering my emails or llamadas these days. If this does happen, Cuomo won’t be able to ever again blame the mayor for anything that happens on the subways. But then again, it’s Andrew we’re talking about.
Watch the dinero going to P.R.
A well-connected Washington, D.C., bochinchero told me, “Puerto Rico is going to get billions. The problem is in whose pockets it’s going to land.” I challenged the friendly insider. "Nah,” I said, “There’s too many eyes on this disaster and what has to be done to get the island back to some degree of normalcy for that to happen.” “Gerson, you know how this game is played. The (New Progressive Party) is in power now and you can already see the moves in D.C.” The bochinchero, who owns property in Puerto Rico, was adamant: “The appropriations for the island's recovery have to be controlled by Washington.” I laughed so hard I had to apologize to my interlocutor. “You mean like when the (Popular Democratic Party) was in power and awarded the contracts to their amigos?”
But seriously, mucho eyes on those in power in cash-strapped Puerto Rico.
NEXT STORY: Winners & Losers 10/06/17