Despite losing the Democratic primary last month, Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes is reversing course, saying now that he will continue running for re-election, but on on two surprising ballot lines. NY1's Zack Fink filed the following report.
Charles Hynes already has his name on the Republican and Conservative lines next month, but since he lost the Democratic primary, the question has been whether or not he would actively campaign.
Multiple sources tell NY1 that the answer, once "no," is now a "yes."
"I think the people are going to come out and reward him for his service, his 24 years of service, and put him back where he belongs as the District Attorney for the next four years," said state Senator Martin Golden of Brooklyn.
On Wednesday night, Hynes held a fundraiser at a Brooklyn restaurant and took in $150,000. It was there that he told supporters he will mount a campaign to keep his job.
That's an about face from primary night, when Hynes lost decisively to Democrat Ken Thompson by a margin of 55 percent to 45 percent and promised to work with the nominee.
"I've just spoken to Ken Thompson. I wished him great success I told him I would work with him on an orderly and a good transition," Hynes said on September 10.
In a statement, Ken Thompson's campaign said, "It's sad that Mr. Hynes refuses to accept the will of the people, as he repeatedly pledged to do last month."
People close to Hynes say that the district attorney changed his mind when he learned that former Assemblyman and Brooklyn Democratic Chairman Clarence Norman played a role in Thompson's victory.
Norman does not deny helping Thompson, but posed the question, "Is Hynes running against Ken Thompson, or is he running against Clarence Norman?"
"Clarence Norman is a felon," Golden said. "He's been arrested, did time in jail. That's, I think, one of the things that's upset this District Attorney."
Seventy-one percent of registered voters in Brooklyn are Democrats. It is the most Democratic county in the state. There has not been a Republican elected district attorney in the borough since the 1920s.
Reached by phone, Conservative Party Chairman Michael Long said that while he applied no pressure, he is happy that Hynes has decided to run. He added that while it's not impossible for him to win, it will be "an uphill battle."