After last weeks reports/rumors from City Hall News and the Village Voice that Theodish political candidate Dan Halloran was going to be replaced by his party with a conservative Democrat in the race for a seat on New York’s City Council, it seemed only a matter of time before he “voluntarily” stepped down. But a flurry of reports since Monday seem to assert that attempts to replace Halloran were either untrue or inviable, and the New York Republicans will be standing by their man.
“Queens Republicans are vehemently denying published reports that they are going to replace Dan Halloran as their candidate for the District 19 City Council seat …“The Queens County Republican Party has not for even a moment entertained a substitution of our candidate,” said Vince Tabone, Queens executive vice chairman and spokesperson for the Halloran campaign. “What we have done is stand firmly with Dan Halloran and called on Congressman [Gary] Ackerman and his staffer Kevin Kim to renounce the vile, repugnant attacks on Dan Halloran’s faith and heritage,” he continued.”
Lisa Derrick at La Figa corrals several of the reports refuting claims that Halloran is stepping down, and interviews another Pagan lawyer from New York, author Phyllis Curott.
“Attitudes have certainly changed–the Republican Party apparently already knew he was Pagan! They’re defending his religious freedom, advocating religious tolerance and condemning a religious test for office as repugnant. Marvelous. Quite a change from Jesse Helm’s introducing legislation to take away the tax-exempt status of Wiccan religious institutions.”
Meanwhile, Chris Bragg at City Hall News, who had a hand in reporting the rumors that the GOP was looking to replace Halloran, now claims that behind-the-scenes efforts to replace Halloran with conservative Democrat Paul Vallone have failed.
“Ending conversations and speculation about whether Paul Vallone would run as a Republican in the race to replace Council Member Tony Avella, Vallone will endorse Democratic candidate Kevin Kim this afternoon, according to Kim’s campaign. The endorsement will take place at 4 p.m. at Kim’s campaign headquarters in Bayside … The endorsement comes after a day of negotiations between leaders of the Queens Democratic Party, the Kim campaign and the Vallone family … Over the past week, Queens Republicans have engaged in talks with Vallone about the replacing embattled Republican candidate Dan Halloran, whose belief in a pre-Christian pagan religion were disclosed in a Sept. 17 article in the Queens Tribune.”
Whether Curott is correct and attitudes within the (New York) GOP have changed, or if the party simply couldn’t replace Halloran in way that didn’t look bad for them, it looks like Halloran will remain the Republican (and Libertarian, Independence, and Conservative) candidate for District 19 city council. Now, onto the race! I can’t wait to see the polling for this one.