The Republican party chairman in Kings County threw his support Tuesday behind supermarket mogul John Catsimatidis for mayor, ending Independence Party candidate Adolfo Carrion’s dream of also running on the GOP line.
Chairman Craig Eaton joined the four other party bosses from Manhattan, Queens, Staten Island and the Bronx in backing Catsimatidis, whose promise to spend whatever it takes to win may be the GOP’s only way to keep their twenty-year hold on Gracie Mansion.
“John grew up in Harlem, attended our public schools and built a successful business career right here on the streets of our city,” Eaton said. “As an immigrant, John intuitively understands the problems and challenges that so many new New Yorkers face. As a product of our public schools, John knows firsthand how a good education prepares our children for the future with the academics and skills they need to succeed.”
The decision disappointed Carrion, a former Bronx borough president, who needed the allowance of at least three of the five borough heads of the Republican party since he is not a registered Republican. He spent months seeking their support — until Eaton’s decision ended that effort.
Eaton said that his decision to make an endorsement “does not lessen the respect I have for both Adolfo Carrion and Joe Lhota,” another GOP contender.
But Carrion vowed to put up a fight as a third voice in the race.
“We learned that the process was severely corrupted, possibly, allegedly, criminal. It’s unfortunate,” Carrion said, referring to last week’s arrest of state Sen. Malcom Smith for trying to bribe his way onto the Republican primary ballot.