An informed source told the Gazette on Thursday, December 10 that Mayor Liz Feld will not be running for re-election and that leaders in the Larchmont Democratic Party are leaning toward having Josh Mandell be their mayoral nominee in 2010. The source insisted on anonymity because no formal decision has been made.
Mayor Feld, a Republican, announced last month that she is considering a run for the US Senate. On Tuesday, she was in Washington, talking to party officials, funders and prospective consultants.
However, on Thursday, Mayor Feld strenuously denied that she has made her decision. She called the anonymous assertion “cowardly.”
“I have never, never told anyone I am not running,” Ms. Feld told the Gazette. “Right now, it’s December 10, and I fully intend to run for mayor – and I hope Josh runs with me.”
“Having said that, if the rumor is that Josh is running, he would be a great mayor,” said Ms. Feld. “ He’s proved that with his work on the board.” Ms. Feld appointed Mr. Mandell to the board in June to fill the vacancy left when Jim Millstein moved to Washington for a job at the US Treasury Department.
Ms. Feld also firmly denied that she is considering another run for the New York Senate.
“You can take that off the table,” said Bill O’Reilly, who served as Ms. Feld’s spokesperson in her failed 2008 campaign for NY Senate against Democrat Suzi Oppenheimer and is once again helping her with communications.
He indicated that “there is a lot involved” in deciding whether to run for US Senate. Asked if there has been any public support for a Feld candidacy, he replied, “no public announcement, but many, many private conversations of support. We’re holding our cards close to the vest.”
Kolbert and Mandell Seeking Re-election
Three positions on the Larchmont Village Board are up for election in March, those of Ms. Feld, Mr. Mandell and Marlene Kolbert.
Ms. Feld has promised to announce a decision on the Senate run ”sooner rather than later.” Candidates for the Larchmont Village Board typically are nominated in party caucuses that must be held by the end of January.
Ms. Kolbert, a Democrat, told the Gazette on Thursday, “I’m planning to run with Josh and Liz, if she plans to run again. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with Liz and Josh.”
Mr. Mandell was equally positive. “I’m definitely seeking another term as trustee,” he said. “I’m looking forward to working with the board and accomplishing many of the tasks that are outstanding, particularly in this difficult budget year.”
Both Ms. Kolbert and Ms. Mandell said they speak only for themselves and not for their party.
“Right now we don’t know who the candidates will be,” said Jaine Elkind Eney, the co-chair of the Democratic Party along with Lorraine Walsh. “The caucus is January 26, and that’s when we’ll pick our candidates.” There will be an organizational meeting in anticipation of the caucus, she added.
Republican challengers to Ms. Kolbert and Mr. Mandell are possible, but unlikely. Ms. Feld is the only Republican on the current board. In 2006, she defeated the incumbent, fellow Republican Ken Bialo, on a coalition slate with two Democrats, Mr. Millstein and Ms. Kolbert.
Following Mr. Bialo’s defeat, the Larchmont Republican Party’s infrastructure collapsed. Ms. Feld has been the only nominee for the board since then.