Republican mayoral candidate Joseph Lhota has a secret, sources say: He's been endorsed by the Queens Republican organization.
Two sources with direct knowledge of the situation said Lhota consultant Jake Menges informed leadership of the Queens Republican Party of the campaign's decision last weekend not to publicize the endorsement. Mr. Menges not only rejected Queens Republicans' offer to have an endorsement press conference, but asked the party not to issue a press release touting its backing of Mr. Lhota, the sources added.
According to one source privy to the campaign's thinking, Mr. Lhota's camp did not want to highlight dissension in the Queens Republican Party and in other Republican circles by publicizing the endorsement, which would have come six weeks after an ugly Republican mayoral primary and two weeks before the general election. The Queens Republican faction led by Queens Republican Chairman Phil Ragusa backed grocery billionaire John Catsimatidis in the primary, while the faction led by Queens Councilman Eric Ulrich backed Mr. Lhota.
Such an announcement could have also brought attention to infighting in Brooklyn Republican Party, and to the fact that Mr. Catsimatidis has not formally endorsed Mr. Lhota, the Lhota campaign feared.
But you know who wasn't ashamed of possibly snagging the endorsement of the Queens GOP? Paul Vallone. Back in 2009:
A source close to Vallone’s campaign said the candidate was interested in the GOP nomination because he believed in race against Democratic primary winner Kevin Kim, Vallone would “win the one-on-one match up with him easily.” Halloran added that Vallone, who faced attacks from his Democratic rivals during the primary campaign, would be supporting him over the Democratic nominee in the race, Kim. “Paul is really like a kindred spirit,” said Halloran.
And then there was his bid for the Conservative line...
According to Tom Long, chairman of the Queens County Conservative Party, however, Vallone told him this during a candidate screening with the party that he is, in fact, pro-life.
Despite once being considered for the GOP and Conservative lines, Vallone is now the Democratic nominee and he's pro-choice. How the hell did that happen?