We here at the Pol Position desk, of course, weren't allowed into the closed-door, off-the-record sit down for fear we wouldn't be able to control ourselves and would immediately start blabbing all of the top-secret campaign details to anyone who would listen.
And try as we might to listen through the soundproof doors on the fancy editorial board meeting room, we couldn't even catch an inkling of the discussion.
But thanks to a recent mailer that was brought to our attention, we finally get our first taste of what this race might look like, and it looks kind of nasty- our favorite kind of campaign!
The mailer wasn't sent by the Lee campaign, but rather by a group called Community Action Now with a PO Box in Whitestone. A quick search on the Open Secrets website reveals a Super PAC based in Elmhurst called Community Action Now.
For the current election cycle, the PAC has courted several big donors - $25,000 contributions – based in Sunset Park and Chinatown, the very base Lee is trying to cultivate.
There are also two donors from Flushing, including an architect that gave the PAC a donation of $15,000, which would also seem to fit nicely with Lee's target base of support, even though the Flushing donors aren't technically in the congressional district.
The mailer takes some pretty hard shots at Velazquez, painting her as “dismissive” and “arrogant,” but perhaps the biggest political cannonball is trying to link her to disgraced former Assembly speaker Sheldon Silver, who was just found guilty on corruption charges.
The mailer notes the two districts overlap, and asserts that the two have had a mutually beneficial political partnership that has allowed both to stay in office.
While we were barred from the meeting with Lee, we did get a chance to read the press release announcing his candidacy, and it stated that as both he and Velazquez were Democrats, there was very little difference among them when it came to the big issues.
Instead, Lee's campaign said it planned to focus on the congresswoman's absence and spotty record when it comes to delivering results for the district.
This mailer would seem to fall right in line with that strategy.