Christine Quinn Kept The CityTime Gravy Train Rolling ; Lobbyists Like Liz Holtzman Kept Rolling In The CityTime Dough ; Scratch-My-Back, Pay-To-Play Endorsements ?
Today, CityTime lobbyist Liz Holtzman endorsed the mayoral candidacy of Christine Quinn.
WNYC was one of many media Web sites, which reported Ms. Holtzman's connection to the $600 million CityTime scandal. Ms. Holtzman was once a four-term Congresswoman.
The city's lobbying database shows a small army of former prominent city officials who did work for SAIC and Technodyne. Defense contractor SAIC has retained former City Comptroller Liz Holtzman, Peter Powers, who served as Mayor Giuliani's top deputy Mayor for operations, and Seth Kaye, who worked in both the Giuliani and Bloomberg administrations. Technodyne's lobbyists include former Bloomberg Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications Commissioner Gino Menchini and Agostino Cangemi, who also held key posts in both administrations. (CityTime Payroll Scandal a Cautionary Tale * WNYC)
Why is Speaker Quinn desperate to accept Ms. Holtzman's endorsement ? At one time, Ms. Holtzman was mentioned as a possible candidate to replace Congresman Anthony Weiner after his resignation, but Ms. Holtzman's connection to the scandalous CityTime fraud immediately disqualified her.
Ms. Holtzman's lobbying firm was paid $120,000 in 2009, $90,000 in 2010, and $200,000 in 2011 by SAIC, the maker of CityTime, to lobby New York City politicians in order to keep NYC.gov paying CityTime's huge cost overruns. Eventually, it was estimated that SAIC over-billed New York City by $600 million, and Ms. Holtzman was one of the principal lobbyist being paid to keep that gravy train rolling. Her lobbying firm was paid $410,000 to keep the CityTime gravy train rolling into Ms. Holtzman's station.
City Councilmember Letitia James called for investigations into CityTime, but Speaker Quinn, who controls the City Council like a dictator, thwarted each attempt to launch a full City Council investigation into the CityTime overbilling scandal. (Daily News)
Maybe Ms. Holtzman is grateful that Speaker Quinn thwarted all those City Council investigations, thereby protecting Ms. Holtzman's CityTime gravy train, and, as patronage, has offered up her endorsement as pay back ?
Ms. Holtzman's endorsement was made during an announcement of a group that Speaker Quinn's mayoral campaign describes as ''Women for Chris.''
Speaker Quinn's latest maneuvering with Ms. Holtzman's endorsement comes on the same day when it was announced that her campaign would immediately drop 11 percentage points in voter support if Mr. Weiner were to enter the mayoral race. Speaker Quinn also faces sharp criticism and endless protests by LGBT activists, who claim that Speaker Quinn has sold out.