Sunday, 20 Jun 2021

Standout Moments from the First In-Person Democratic Debate

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It’s Thursday.

Weather: A rainy day, turning stormy in the evening. High in the mid-70s.

Alternate-side parking: In effect until June 19 (Juneteenth).

With less than three weeks until the primary election, the race for mayor of New York City has become increasingly heated.

That dynamic was on show last night, as the eight major Democratic candidates attacked one another in more personal terms during their first in-person debate.

The contenders jousted over several areas of concern for New Yorkers, with matters of crime, justice and policing dominating the night once again. Still, the face-to-face format was often more chaotic than substantive: Deep policy discussions were sometimes replaced by animated attacks.

[Read more about the standout moments and catch up on who the candidates are.]

Here are three things to know:

Eric Adams was attacked like a front-runner.

At one point, each of the eight candidates was given a chance to ask a question of an opponent.

Mr. Adams, the Brooklyn borough president, was targeted four times.

Later, Andrew Yang, the former presidential candidate and another leading contender, landed the sharpest critique, pointing to the times in Mr. Adams’s career when he has been subject to investigation.

Mr. Adams defended his integrity and shot back at Mr. Yang’s lack of political experience in New York.

Kathryn Garcia stayed out of the fracas.

Ms. Garcia, the former sanitation commissioner, appears to have gained traction in the limited polling available. And leading up to the debate, she was the subject of attacks.

But as leading candidates faced pointed criticisms, Ms. Garcia largely flew under the radar. Her campaign framed the approach as a strategy of remaining “above the fray.”

When the candidates were prompted to ask another a question, no one directed one to Ms. Garcia. Only toward the end of the debate did Scott M. Stringer, the city comptroller, criticize Ms. Garcia for her role in Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration.

Maya Wiley came out swinging.

Ms. Wiley, a former commentator on MSNBC, criticized her fellow candidates and ignored calls from the moderators to stay within the time limit.

Among her biggest moments were sparring matches with Mr. Adams, whom she attacked for his stance on public safety. She questioned why he once said that he would carry a gun if elected as mayor (he is a former police officer and allowed to do so).

Mr. Adams said there was a distinction between off-duty officers carrying guns and the proliferation of illegal weapons.

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Summer is here and New York City is reopening. Stay up to date on the best things to do, see and eat this season. Take a look at our latest newsletter, and sign up here.

Want more news? Check out our full coverage.

The Mini Crossword: Here is today’s puzzle.

What we’re reading

New York City will begin opening mobile vaccination sites at schools tomorrow, starting with several in the Bronx. [PIX 11]

Many prospective tenants face illegal housing bias after seeking to pay through forms of public assistance. But staffing to field the complaints is low. [City Limits]

What New York might learn from another big city in its planned expansion of the street vendor system. [Curbed]

Understand the N.Y.C. Mayoral Race

    • Who’s Running for Mayor? There are more than a dozen people still in the race to become New York City’s next mayor, and the primary will be held on June 22. Here’s a rundown of the candidates.
    • Get to Know the Candidates: We asked leading candidates for mayor questions about everything from police reform and climate change to their favorite bagel order and workout routine.
    • What is Ranked-Choice Voting? New York City began using ranked-choice voting for primary elections this year, and voters will be able to list up to five candidates in order of preference. Confused? We can help.

    And finally: A new addition to New York’s concert scene

    The Times’s Ben Sisario writes:

    For the last year, with the concert business mothballed by the pandemic, small clubs and theaters have warned that their survival was at risk, and dozens of venues across the country have shut down.

    But with concerts now coming back, something that might have seemed unthinkable just a few months ago is happening: Not only have old venues reopened their doors, but entirely new ones are sprouting up.

    On Sept. 30, Brooklyn Made, a new club in Bushwick, Brooklyn, will open with two nights featuring Jeff Tweedy of Wilco.

    Everything about the space is planned as deluxe and high-concept, from the Moroccan lamps adorning the 500-capacity performance space to the adjoining cafe and rooftop deck. Visiting artists will find an impossibly luxurious spread, including a private pool and use of a loft apartment with striking views of the Manhattan skyline.

    It is one of a handful of changes to the post-pandemic New York concert scene, including the return of Irving Plaza, the landmark rock club off Union Square that will reopen in August after a two-year, multimillion-dollar renovation. The venue underwent a major face-lift inside, with new bars, new bathrooms and improved sight lines.

    For Brooklyn Made, at 428 Troutman Street, the club’s very existence is a bullish bet on the return of live music and the nightlife economy in New York, said Anthony Makes, a longtime player in the New York concert world who is one of the principals behind the new club.

    “I believe in the future,” Makes said on a recent tour of the space, where construction machines were still whirring, but the sunny artist apartment, one level up, was an oasis of quiet.

    “And I think everyone’s going to come back,” he added.

    It’s Thursday — are you ready to dance?

    Metropolitan Diary: Barking

    Dear Diary:

    I was walking my 14-pound rescue dog, Ellie, across the intersection at 70th Street and West End Avenue. A work crew was installing gas lines nearby.

    The noise was quite loud from the drilling in the pavement, and I hesitated before crossing. But it seemed safe enough, and I held onto Ellie as I made my way across the street.

    As we approached the workers, one of them, a tall, burly man, was bending over to install a sign warning drivers to slow down. Ellie dashed toward him and started to bark.

    The man jumped up, surprised and then embarrassed at being frightened by a little dog.

    I started to apologize, but a man I took to be a supervisor walked over and interrupted.

    “Don’t apologize,” he said. “I wanted to bark at him all week.”

    — Judith Mandel Lampron

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