As the New York mayoral race heats up, one animal-rights group is continuing its efforts to make Christine Quinn look like a horse’s you-know-what. New Yorkers for Clean, Livable and Safe Streets, or NYclass, the nonprofit group that wants to put an end to carriage horses in Central Park and elsewhere in the city, has launched another website attacking the City Council speaker, who in some polls tracked by CNN has been losing ground to former U.S. Rep. Anthony Wiener in the race for the Democratic nomination.
On Thursday, the group launched Quinn Hates Animals, which details what it sees as the many anti-animal decisions that punctuate Quinn’s political record. Among those decisions are her opposition to a bill that would have required sprinklers in pet stores and her support of the controversial carriage-horse industry.
“Christine Quinn has not been a friend to NYC’s animals,” Allie Feldman, executive director of NYclass, said in a statement. “We urge New Yorkers to visit out site to learn more about just how little empathy Quinn shows to our city’s four-legged residents.”
Quinn has long had a rocky relationship with animal-rights groups such as NYclass and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, or PETA, both of which support phasing out horse-drawn carriages and replacing them with electric-powered replicas of early-20th century automobiles. NYclass says Quinn has not supported legislation that would facilitate the transition.
In 2010, Quinn helped push through a bill to increase the fare for horse-drawn carriage rides and provide more vacation time for horses, but animal-rights activists say that doesn’t go far enough. They argue that major cities such as Paris, London, Toronto and Beijing have all banned carriage horses.
Quinn Hates Animals is not the first anti-Quinn attack site launched by NYclass. In March, the group the group launched Bullies for Christine Quinn, a Tumblr blog that features memes of famous fictional bullies such as Biff Tannen and Gordon Gekko wielding “Christine Quinn for Mayor” signs. The blog was an effort to capitalize on Quinn’s reputation for pushy and vindictive political tactics, as detailed in a recent New York Times article.
Steve Nislick, president of NYclass, is also a founding member of New York City is Not For Sale 2013, the group behind the Anybody But Quinn attack campaign and its accompanying website.
With less than four months to go until the mayoral election, a clear front-runner has yet to emerge in the race to take the reins from the outgoing Michael Bloomberg, who has served three terms as mayor.