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Women's Groups Endorse De Blasio; Lhota Releases 22-Page Policy Book

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A new poll out Thursday shows that Joseph Lhota has made up virtually no ground in the race for mayor, as Bill de Blasio still has a towering lead less than four weeks out from election day and continues to pick up support. NY1's Bobby Cuza filed the following report.

They may not have been with him in the primary, but on Thursday, Bill de Blasio got a warm embrace from three women's groups: NARAL Pro-Choice New York, the National Organization for Women's New York City chapter and Planned Parenthood’s local political arm.

They said the choice was clear.

"There is one pro-choice candidate, that there is one pro-choice choice for mayor, and that is Bill de Blasio," said Andrea Miller, president of NARAL Pro-Choice.

Indeed, NARAL said that Republican Joseph Lhota had dodged questions on the issue, though he said in this area, there's no distinction between him and de Blasio.

"I'm proud of my record when it comes to women's reproductive rights, a woman's right to choose, and also proud of all of my social progressive issues, which are very similar to Bill's," Lhota said.

"Mr. Lhota clearly subscribes to an organization known as the Republican Party, which of late has led the charge against the rights of women," de Blasio said.

Lhota released a 22-page policy book Thursday. Among the ideas included free online community college programs and four new Metro-North stops in the Bronx.

He's hoping that some of his ideas will gain traction. The latest poll shows him down 44 points. Independence Party candidate Adolfo Carrion is a distant third at just 2 percent, with 7 percent undecided. The poll's margin of error is +/- 4.4 points.

As for the debate that aired on NY1 Wednesday night, Lhota said that it was unfortunate that de Blasio chose not to participate. However, he didn't seem much interested in making it a political issue, instead looking ahead to next week.

"The real debate starts next Tuesday night, 7 o'clock," Lhota said.

That's when he and de Blasio will meet in the first of three televised debates.

As for where he was during Wednesday's debate, de Blasio said he didn't remember. He apparently chose not to tune in.

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