Without Bo Dietl and an audience filled with rowdy ringers, a cordial debate somehow broke out last night in the race for Public Advocate. While Tish James delivered a strong litany of her achievements over the last four years, first-time candidate J.C. Polanco gave a strong performance on the debate stage, raising the question of why local Republican officials aren’t doing more to boost the campaign of a Dominican-American newcomer to the GOP arena.
Tonight, we'll be bringing another debate to City University’s graduate center – with incumbent comptroller Scott Stringer facing off against Michel Faulkner, a charismatic pastor who previously unsuccessfully ran for then-Congressman Charles Rangel’s seat in 2010.
A former New York Jet, Faulkner is familiar with the media spotlight and won’t be afraid to question Stringer’s oversight of the city's $85 billion budget. With both men flirting with mayoral campaigns at different points in their careers, it’s also very fair to ask both men if comptroller is their dream job or a placeholder for something much bigger off on the horizon.
As last night’s debate showed, there are plenty of major issues confronting the city that have largely been overlooked in the era of Trump. From education to crime to the economy, the comptroller plays a major role in oversight, ensuring that the city is actually doing its job. Do your job as a voter tonight: watch the debate at 7 p.m. And if you’re a big Yankees fan, we’ll replay it for you at 10 p.m.