43rd City Council District Race: Draft Liam McCabe Movement Grows

The Liam McCabe for City Council train is beginning to roll and it’s already threatening to steamroll over fellow Republicans candidates Bob Capano and John Quaglione right through the September primary and into the November general election against a yet to be determined Democratic candidate.

That after Brandon Washington, one of Brooklyn’s young rising Republican stars, released a letter with a slew of GOP supporters urging McCabe to run for term-limited City Councilman Vincent Gentile’s seat in the 43rd District covering Bay Ridge, Bensonhurst, Bath Beach and Dyker Heights.

Liam McCabe

“With all of the problems we face as Brooklyn residents, we need somebody in the City Council who can improve our quality of life, and serve as an intelligent voice for the 43rd District. We believe that Liam is the only person who can defeat any Democrat who runs for this seat and furthermore, we believe that Liam will adequately fight for the constituents of the 43rd District in the City Council,” wrote Washington in the letter, which was co-signed by John Curzio, Vice President of the Brooklyn Young Republican Club.

Washington is the President of the Brooklyn Young Republican Club and on the executive committee of the Kings County Republican Party.

Among the other Republicans signing onto the letter included former State Sen. David Storobin and a number of current and former Republican district leaders and civic leaders. Among the current Republican District leaders on the list include Trisha Allyne (42nd Assembly District), Glenn Nocera (44th Assembly District Leader, Sergeant-at-Arms of Kings County Republican Party, and President of the Brooklyn Tea Party), Angela Petit (49th Assembly District) and Linda Lyons (51st Assembly District).

Additionally, there is a #DraftLiam Facebook page with more than 1,700 members.

Despite the affection, McCabe says he hasn’t made up his mind yet, but expects to announced his intentions by the first week of February.

“I am overwhelmed with gratitude and flattered by the outpouring of support from friends, family, district leaders and former electeds and people carrying the torch for the Republican and Conservative Parties. They deserve an answer from me and they will get an answer sometime in early February,” said McCabe.

“I would also like to thank William Proscia and Maureen Gillespie-McEvoy, two solid, salt of the earth Bay Ridge residents for creating the [Facebook] page when it was originally entitled “We’re with Liam” back when I was critical of Mayor de Blasio. You had my back then and if I decide to run I want you two to know that I will have yours,” he added.

McCabe was born and raised in Bay Ridge, where he still lives. He got his start in public service through his first job in a locally famous liquor store, Long’s Liquors. Michael Long, who owned the liquor store, was, and still is, Chairman of the New York Conservative Party, and convinced Liam to pursue a career in public service.  

McCabe is the former president of the Brooklyn South Conservative Club and used to sit on the executive board of the Brooklyn Conservative Party and the State Conservative Party, but recently resigned these positions and changed his registration to Republican, anticipating a possible run for the City Council seat.

McCabe also has experience running and/or working on numerous Republican candidate campaigns including for State Senator Marty Golden, former Gov. George Pataki and current Queens City Councilman Eric Ulrich.

Most recently McCabe was a community liaison for Congressman Dan Donovan (South Brooklyn, Staten Island), where he also ran the Brooklyn side of Donovan’s recent re-election political campaign. Donovan carried Brooklyn in his re-election, the first Republican to do so in over a dozen years. 

Additionally, McCabe has undertaken many charitable causes. He regularly participates in the Hope Walk, which raises awareness for homelessness, and recently organized the Willie McCabe Memorial 5K Run, in honor of his father, who was a homeless veteran. An alumnus of St. Francis College and graduate from Bishop Ford High School, McCabe coached his son’s basketball team at Our Lady of Angels last year. He has two sons, Rory and Andrew.

This strong community background should also help McCabe in his fundraising efforts should he decide to run. With a six-to-one match in public dollars, McCabe would certainly meet the 75 in-district donors to be eligible for matching funds.

Interestingly, Capano, who has regularly been sending out press releases for several months, and has announced his intentions to run sometime ago, only had 31 total donors in his filing today – the first filing deadline for the 2017 election season.

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