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The Bobster
12-28-2017, 09:10 AM

De Blasio fundraiser pulled strings to get crooked donor’s pal into exclusive party
By Rich Calder
December 28, 2017 | 10:43am

Mayor de Blasio’s fundraiser pulled major strings to get a crooked donor’s pal a last-minute invitation an exclusive party at Gracie Mansion, newly released emails reveal.

Ross Offinger fired off an email to City Hall event organizers on April 12, 2014, on behalf of deep-pocketed (((Jona Rechnitz))), who has since pled guilty to bribing NYPD and city officials.

The email – titled “Have a big donor friend of Jona Rechnitz who wants to come tonight” — sought to add philanthropist Russell Galbut to the guest list for a barbeque being thrown later that evening at Gracie Mansion for the Democratic National Convention 2016 selection committee. It asks, “can we make an exception?”

Offinger came to the rescue shortly after Rechnitz himself attempted to get Galbut added as his guest but was shot down because the event was overbooked. Apparently annoyed over not getting his way, Rechnitz emailed back the mayor’s office to say “count me out” and let Offinger know how peeved he was by ccing him.

Michael Carey, director of the Mayor’s Office for Special Projects and Community Events, later in the day replied to Offinger, “Let me get back to you. We are WAYYYYY over capacity.”

However, he eventually caved in and said via email Rechnitz could bring Galbut.

Offinger then replied, “Hero!!! Many many thanks. You have one of the toughest gigs in public service!”

The emails were obtained by The Post through the Freedom of Information Law and were among thousands of pages of correspondences by city officials related to de Blasio’s now-shuttered fundraising nonprofit Campaign for One New York.

Offinger hung up the phone on a reporter seeking comment, but de Blasio spokesman Eric Phillips downplayed Offinger’s actions.

“It was an event to court potential DNC donors for a convention that would have been a good economic thing for New York City,” Phillips said. “Naturally, members of the political donor class were encouraged to attend.”

Rechnitz was the government’s star witness earlier this year in the bribery trial of former city correction officer union president Norman Seabrook. He offered bombshell testimony about pay-to-play activities at City Hall that sometimes overshadowed the allegations against Seabrook.

Rechnitz testified about having a tight relationship with de Blasio and Offinger, and about his ability to get his problems solved based on how much he donated to the mayor’s pet causes.

He also said under oath that the mayor personally hit him up for a $102,000 donation for a failed bid to help Democrats wrest control of the state Senate and that the two spoke on the phone once a week.

Rechnitz also proved to be a generous donor to de Blasio, shelling out $50,000 to Campaign for One New York, and giving another $9,900 to his 2013 mayoral campaign with his wife.

De Blasio has labeled Rechnitz as a “liar” and a “felon” who shouldn’t be trusted. :rolleyes:

The Bobster
12-28-2017, 12:21 PM

Emails show de Blasio was pushed to be more progressive
By Yoav Gonen
December 27, 2017 | 3:04pm | Updated

Mayor Bill de Blasio had to be pressured to expand his national progressive platform in 2015 — or risk the loss of critical support from commie coon advocates — to include Social Security expansion, debt-free college and dealing with mass incarceration, according to newly released emails.

Among those who only signed on to the initiative after the mayor agreed to highlight those issues in his May 12, 2015, national agenda roll-out were Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison, Demos president Heather McGhee and CNN commentator Van Jones.

Just four days before de Blasio’s big announcement in Washington, DC, Jones told the mayor that tackling mass incarceration was critical for support of his plan to combat income inequality. :rolleyes:

“I am not the only black leader who will be disappointed to see the key economic issue that is crushing our dreams omitted from a Bill DiBlasio [sic] document,” Jones wrote de Blasio on May 8, 2015.

“Women’s, students’ and immigrants’ economic issues are rightfully included. But not the economic issue that has propelled the #BlackLivesMatter onto the global stage? No economic vision that fails to address the mass incarceration crisis :rolleyes: can be called progressive.”

Van Jones
Getty Images

The emails show that Jones and de Blasio communicated numerous times by phone and email over the next three days, at which point the mayor agreed to a number of compromises — including announcing that mass incarceration would be added to his agenda.

“We all agree that your proposal represents a constructive offer and a good-faith attempt to accommodate the many concerns that people have raised inside and outside of this process. Therefore, we do want to move forward,” Jones wrote on May 11 on behalf of a number of prominent African-American leaders.

“At the end of the week, we will re-evaluate whether sufficient progress has been made to remain supportive of this effort.”

The emails also show that a top consultant to de Blasio on his national agenda — John del Cecato of AKPD — worked to get McGhee and Ellison on board by committing to adding the expansion of Social Security and debt-free college to the preliminary platform. :mad:

An email from McGhee suggests her support came at the last minute.

“I talked to Van [Jones] and he said that [de Blasio] said that he would announce that [Social Security] expansion, debt-free college and mass incarceration would be added to the document by the end of the week. If you can confirm that, John, I am deeply relieved and will get back on the train both literally and figuratively to stand by the Mayor in DC tomorrow,” McGhee wrote.

The emails were obtained under a Freedom of Information Law request seeking communications between the mayor’s office and del Cecato — one of the five so-called “agents of the city” who acted as private advisers to the mayor.

The latest batch of documents showed members of the administration working feverishly to get prominent elected officials and advocates to sign on to the agenda ahead of the announcement.

A transcript of the mayor’s statements on May 12 shows he presented the three issues as “key planks” that would be added to his initial agenda.

“We’re going to address issues like the expansion of Social Security. We’re going to address debt-free college. We’re going to find ways to make sure we’re investing in schools, not jails :rolleyes:,” he said at the time. “We look forward to working on these priorities in the days immediately ahead, and building this movement all over the country.”

The mayor’s national agenda push took a massive hit later that year when a planned presidential forum in Iowa collapsed because there was no interest from the candidates.

A website that formerly contained that agenda now displays an error message, and a senior de Blasio aide wrote to other top advisers in an email in January 2016 that “I think we need to talk [The progressive agenda] 2.0, what it looks like and how it fits into overall plan.”

Requests for comment sent to Jones, McGhee, del Cecato and a spokesman for Ellison weren’t immediately returned.

A spokesman for de Blasio declined comment.