On October 20, an elegant $1,000-per-person fundraiser will be held for New York mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio.
The event will be in the home of Charles Myers, a partner at investment bank advisory firm Evercore Partners Inc. Richard Socarides, a former senior adviser to President Bill Clinton, and Tim Gunn of “Project Runway” are also hosts of the event.
De Blasio won the primary election against opponent Christine Quinn, who is openly gay, on September 10. He has since raised nearly $820,000 in private fundraising. Leonard Feinstein, co-founder of Bed Bath & Beyond, and John Zucotti, co-chairman of Brookfield Office Properties Inc., each contributed the maximum legal amount of $4,950.
“We supported [Christine Quinn] because we were excited about the idea of having an openly gay mayor, not to mention her long history and record,” Socarides said in an interview. “But now people are excited about Bill and think he’s going to be an outstanding mayor, not only for the gay community, but for all New York.”
Last night, de Blasio and Republican opponent Joseph P. Lhota had the first of three televised debates scheduled before the November 5 election.
Chirlane McCray, de Blasio’s wife, identified as a lesbian until she met her future-husband in 1991. In 1979, Essence magazine published an article written by McCray in which she described her then-affiliation with black lesbian feminist group “The Combahee River Collective.”
When asked about the article last year, McCray said, “In the 1970’s, I identified as a lesbian and wrote about it. In 1991, I met the love of my life, and married him.”
Like de Blasio, Llhota is also a supporter of same-sex marriage, and has raised funds with gay New Yorkers.
“My viewpoints on the LGBT community are well-documented,” Llhota said in an interview at Bloomberg headquarters. “I’ve worked with them over the years to make sure that they’re treated with dignity and respect.”