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New York Times endorses Quinn, Lhota in mayor's race

By Chris Boyette, CNN
updated 8:47 PM EDT, Sat August 24, 2013
The New York Times endorsed Democrat Christine Quinn and Republican Joseph Lhota in the mayoral primary.
The New York Times endorsed Democrat Christine Quinn and Republican Joseph Lhota in the mayoral primary.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • New York Times issues mayoral endorsements
  • Primaries are Sept. 10
  • General election winner will replace Bloomberg

New York (CNN) -- The New York Times on Saturday endorsed Christine Quinn, a Democrat, and Joseph Lhota, a Republican, ahead of the primary elections to determine who will run to succeed New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

The endorsements by the renowned newspaper could have substantial influence on the September 10 primary elections for each party.

Quinn, the City Council speaker and one of seven Democrats in the primary race, "offers the judgment and record of achievement anyone should want in a mayor," the newspaper said.

"She has shepherded through important laws protecting New Yorkers' health, safety and civil rights, including measures banning public smoking, protecting tenants and small businesses, and battling slumlords. She sponsored the sweeping 2007 legislation that made the city's exemplary campaign-finance laws even stronger," the Times endorsement said.

The newspaper gave credit to two other Democratic candidates, Bill de Blasio, the public advocate, and former comptroller William Thompson Jr., but said the editorial board had already been set to endorse Quinn even before what they believed was her impressive performance in a debate Wednesday.

"We are honored to have the endorsement of the New York Times. The endorsement makes clear that Christine Quinn hasn't just talked about being a progressive, she has a long record of fighting for New York's progressive values and she has delivered results every step of the way," said Mike Morey, spokesman for the campaign.

According to the latest NBC 4 NY/Wall Street Journal/Marist survey released on August 16, de Blasio and Quinn are currently tied in the polls. If no candidate obtains the required 40% of the vote, the top two will hold a runoff on Oct. 1.

The crowded Democratic field includes former U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner.

The Times called Republican candidate Joe Lhota, once right-hand man to Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and former chairman of the New York City Metropolitan Transportation Authority, "the best qualified of the three men seeking the Republican nomination for mayor."

"Few people know better than Mr. Lhota how city government works. He was an expert budget director for Mr. Giuliani, and then became deputy mayor for operations," the Times said.

"In 2011 and 2012, he ran the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which, under his leadership, recovered amazingly quickly from the damage done by Hurricane Sandy," the paper said.

CNN's Greg Botelho contributed to this report.

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