All hail the new Tammany Hall!
After a spirited, emotional and at times raucous debate, the New York City Council voted, 29 to 22, on Thursday afternoon to extend term limits, allowing Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg to seek re-election next year and undoing the result of two voter referendums that had imposed a limit of two four-year terms. (Please refresh this post for latest updates.)
The vote was a major victory for Mayor Bloomberg â€” a billionaire and lifelong Democrat who was elected mayor as a Republican in 2001, won re-election in 2005, became an independent last year, and decided just weeks ago that he wished to seek a third term for himself in 2009 â€” and for the Councilâ€™s speaker, Christine C. Quinn. But the intense acrimony surrounding the decision left a sharply divided Council and could ultimately damage the mayorâ€™s popularity.
After Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum, who presides over the Council, announced the final result at 4:35 p.m., the balcony erupted in shouts of â€œThe cityâ€™s for sale!â€ and â€œShame on you!â€
I guess Bloomberg isn’t eyeing a 2012 prez run, eh?