The clamor of the 2013 New York City mayoral race has begun and candidates have started trotting out their well-rehearsed rhetoric. One can’t help but wonder who, beneath the politician’s charisma and charm, would actually represent the interests of the people in this metropolis?
Many bold claims are made during any given speech, and after years of social media, news, and mudslinging campaigns, it’s easy to start feeling a bit numb. However, when you get a campaign kick-off speech filled with contradictions like the speech John Liu gave on March 17 on the steps of city hall, that deadened political sense lights up like Times Square.
Liu, the current city comptroller and former city councilman for northeast Queens, has the audacity to be embroiled in a campaign finance scandal yet give the FBI directives on how and when he should be investigated.
Rather than run for mayor, Liu might better spend his time worrying about his former fundraiser, Oliver Pan, and former campaign treasurer, Jenny Hou, both of whom have been indicted on federal fraud charges. They may decide they are better served by turning state’s evidence instead of being the fall guys in this scandal.
(Article continues below comic)
In his kick-off speech, this former city councilman from Flushing claimed to represent 100 percent of NYC.
Yet, in 2008 he refused to meet with constituents practicing Falun Gong who were being verbally and physically assaulted by mobs in his district—mobs the then consul general for the People’s Republic of China in New York City, Peng Keyu, boasted in a clandestinely recorded phone call that he had incited. Liu did manage to find time for closed door meetings with those who were attacking the Falun Gong practitioners, though.
As a mayoral candidate, John Liu claims to be a leader. As a comptroller, Liu paid a campaign operative, Chung Seto, to run his office. Liu simultaneously barged across a bright red ethical line while demonstrating he can’t handle the job he was elected to do.
As a mayoral candidate, John Liu claims to stand up to the entrenched interests. While a City Councilman he traveled to China to accept an award from the Chinese Communist Party, an entrenched interest group that uses suppression at home and espionage worldwide to preserve itself.
As a mayoral candidate, John Liu claims to be and to stand for all kinds of things. John Liu seems to be saying to New York, are you going to believe me or your lying eyes? Most New Yorkers can see what is going on just fine.