Two candidates in the June 3 special election to replace ex-City Councilman Dennis Gallagher backed out hours before a debate this week in what was seen as a political snub by the event's host.
Council debate snubs prompt 'character' jab
Democrat Elizabeth Crowley and Republican Anthony Como had pledged to attend the Juniper Park Civic Association's debate Tuesday night, but both bailed out via phone message shortly before it was to begin, said association President Bob Holden.
Both candidates ditched the debate in order to meet with the editorial board of a Queens weekly newspaper, the candidates confirmed to the Daily News.
Holden said the pair feared being asked tough questions.
"To me, this is disgraceful," Holden told the 150-person crowd at Our Lady of Hope in Middle Village. "They made a commitment in writing to us, the neighborhood, and then at the last minute they renege. What does that tell you about their character?"
Crowley chose the option that would "allow her to communicate with a broader audience," her campaign manager, Alyson Grant, said in a statement.
Como said he chose the newspaper meeting for the same reason when faced with a conflict after the debate was rescheduled.
Cute, Anthony. The newspaper called at 4pm on the day of the debate to schedule. You already had a commitment. 150 people were waiting to hear what you and Dizzy Lizzy had to say. Interesting how you both came up with the same excuse. Looks like you guys got exactly what you wanted - exposure to a wider audience. Your cowardice made the Daily News! Also made the Courier and the Chronicle. Congratulations!