Under Cover, Sept. 12, 2013

Heavy in spots
Turnout was light for the Sept. 10 primary but as with any rule, there are exceptions.

In Chelsea’s Penn South, waits for some election districts were over 40 minutes. The middle class housing complex with many elderly people generally has such a high voter turnout that two of the candidates for borough president — Julie Menin and Jessica Lappin — were at the P.S. 33 polling site before the sun rose at 6:30 a.m.

Perhaps the early bird doesn’t get the worm since Gale Brewer won the primary. On the other hand, we believe Chris Quinn voted there later in the day and things didn’t work out too well for her either.

Another exception was Chinatown’s Confucius Plaza, but a poll worker estimated that represented only about 20 percent of the registered Democrats eleigible to vote. Sadly, that is a high figure for city primaries.

And a few, including Margaret Chin herself, suggested that the Chinatown turnout was lower than four years ago when John Liu was on a citywide ballot for the first time, and Chin ran what at the time was her strongest bid for City Council.

Chin got the win anyway.

Poll Position
Score this mayoral primary polling season for Quinnipiac. The university’s predictions for Bill de Blasio, Chris Quinn and Bill Thompson were eerily accurate.

If you read between the lines of some of the stories about polls, there was a healthy amount of disbelief about their numbers from the political press.

We admit our eyebrows raised a few times too when they were the first to show de Blasio was near the crucial 40 percent threshold, and the last poll in which they also correctly predicted Thompson’s pull away from Quinn.

A Quini-skeptic might say their polls were wrong until primary day when they proved to be right — perhaps de Blasio really wasn’t at 40 until Mayor Bloomberg inexplicably called the campaign “racist,” but regardless, to the victors go the spoils.

Sorry Harvey
We assume Harvey Keitel has been on the “Daily Show” at least once somewhere along the line, but apparently the actor will no longer be able to book his gigs waiting to vote in Tribeca. We understand that Jon Stewart’s polling place remains at the CWA Local on Hudson St., but that Keitel showed up to vote there Tuesday only to be told his site had moved.

Harvey, you’ll be missed at CWA.

Field crowds early
Paul Newell, who first told us about possibly running to replace State. Sen Daniel Squadron last year, said he was not surprised to read that Assemblymember Brian Kavanagh may also be eyeing the seat if Squadron prevails in his Public Advocate runoff race Oct. 1.

“Brian moved into the district [a few months ago] and that can’t be an entire coincidence,” Newell told us.

He said Kavanagh had to thread a needle to avoid the carpetbagger charge (our word), because although there is some overlap between the two Downtown legislative districts, most of it is public housing and there are only about two blocks where Kavanagh could have realistically moved to be in his current and perhaps future district.

But Newell does not sound at all cutthroat about the possible competition reported last week by our good friends at The Villager’s Scoopy’s Notebook. He did not criticize the move and told us Kavanagh would be a “good senator.”

He also had a kind word for another possible contender identified by Scoopy, Alan Gerson, the former City Councilmember. Newell said he and Gerson are probably the only two candidates who have a good sense of the entire senate district, which also includes Downtown Brooklyn.

Newell still thinks he’d be a strong candidate regardless of whether the nominee is picked in a Democratic primary, or in the more usual case where the Democratic County Committee for the senate district makes the pick. He said he and his allies on Downtown Independent Democrats have named “the largest block” of members on the selection committee.

And to think, you readers were busy thinking about the elections still to come this year.

C.C. @ B.M.C.C.
He’s Chevy Chase, and you’re not, but that’s why he’ll be performing alongside singer Roberta Flack and David Letterman’s musical director and sidekick Paul Shaffer at the Borough of Manhattan Community College. The three celebs are gathering for a good cause Sept. 25 — to raise the cash to purchase a Steinway Grand piano that has been on the campus as a loan. Additional dough will go toward scholarships to the school.

The Steinway Soiree Benefit, hosted by the B.M.C.C. Foundation Board, will welcome the well-heeled of New York for an elegant evening of entertainment at the school’s Fiterman Art Center, with a matching price tag of $250 for general admission tickets.

An “88-Key Naming opportunity,” will allow patrons to name the piano keys with a donation of $500 to $5,000.

Call 212-220-8020 for more info.

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