Updated 07/13/2012 10:01 PM
Fight Between Kelly, Local Leaders Puts Quinn In Uncomfortable Spot
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly clashed very publicly with local elected officials this week, accusing them of silence on the issue of violence in minority communities. That's put City Council Speaker Christine Quinn in a very uncomfortable position. NY1's Bobby Cuza filed the following report.
To view our videos, you need to
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.
Then come back here and refresh the page.
It was a classic political slugfest this week: Police Commissioner Ray Kelly trading barbs with City Council members and other local politicians.
Caught in the middle was City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, often an administration ally.
On Friday, Quinn attended an anti-violence event that felt at times like a pro-police rally, with the event’s organizer backing Kelly.
“I support commissioner Kelly on saying this because it’s true," said Miguel Acevedo of the Fulton Houses Tenants Association. "It’s black and Latino crime on black and Latino crime and we need to stop it.”
“We have to help the police department," said DeReese Huff of the Campos Plaza Tenants Association. "The police department cannot do their job unless we put in a helping hand with them.”
Quinn, though, tread lightly.
“We cannot have New Yorkers living in fear,” she said.
The City Council Speaker stood with the community against gun violence but painstakingly avoided taking sides in the latest debate.
“I applaud the police commissioner and the police department for the work that they are doing. I am also very grateful to my colleagues for the work that they’ve been doing," she said. "The way we’re really going to send a zero-tolerance-for-gun-violence message is for all of us to work as collectively as possible.”
In contrast to some of her potential rivals in next year’s mayor’s race, Speaker Quinn has been consistently supportive of Commissioner Kelly, even suggesting she’d keep him on if elected.
“I have long said and continue to say that whoever the next mayor of the city of New York is, they would be very lucky if Ray Kelly stayed on as police commissioner,” she said.
It hasn’t seemed to hurt her political prospects. On Friday, Quinn reported raising about $700,000 in the first half of the year, bringing her total war chest to nearly 6 million.