Courier Life’s

District Attorney Charles Hynes vs. Ken Thompson

Incumbent lawman resurrects himself as a Republican

Brooklyn Daily
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He’s baaaaaack!

Brooklyn’s 23-year-incumbent district attorney — thought vanquished in the Sept. 10 Democratic primary — is making a shocking second coming as a Republican and Conservative candidate.

Charles “Joe” Hynes announced on Oct. 3 that he would resume his campaign against Dem nominee Ken Thompson, to whom the lawman had conceded on primary night. Hynes’s camp made the decision after realizing only 16 percent of Brooklyn’s Democrats voted in the race — and after hearing allegations that former Democratic Party boss Clarence Norman, who Hynes helped send up the river in 2005 for accepting illegal donations to his Assembly campaign, was steering Thompson’s campaign.

“He realizes that just a tiny amount of voters came out in that election, and he doesn’t believe he can stand by while someone who’s manipulated by Clarence Norman can run a District Attorney’s Office,” said Hynes’s new spokesman Jerry Schmetterer, who is on vacation from his regular job as director of public information at the district attorney’s office.

Schmetterer said Hynes raised $150,000 at a Bay Ridge fund-raiser on Oct. 2 — on top of the $24,000 the incumbent still had in the bank after primary night. Thompson had roughly $70,000 left over after Sept. 10, and a spokesman said the nominee has continued raising money in the weeks since.

Thompson’s camp adamantly denied that Norman had any role in the election effort, and blasted the incumbent for going back on his promise to concede and assist in the transition between administrations. The nonetheless predicted another Thompson victory.

“Clarence had absolutely nothing to do with the campaign,” said Thompson spokesman James Freedland, who predicted an easy victory in November. “It’s sad that Mr. Hynes refuses to accept the will of the people, as he repeatedly pledged to do last month. And we are confident all of Brooklyn’s voters will render the same overwhelming verdict as they did in the primary.”

Thompson beat Hynes by 18,000 votes, out of nearly 170,000 who participated in the primary — a margin of 10 percent.

The Thompson campaign said that Hynes has not been cooperative, as he had promised, in helping the primary victor transition into office in January.

A Republican Party source said that Hynes has had no conversations about campaigning on the party’s line with Kings County Republican chairman Craig Eaton. The GOP strategist speculated that state Sen. Marty Golden (R–Bay Ridge) may be the driving figure behind Hynes’s revival, suggesting that Golden was hoping to boost turnout for Republican candidates like hizzoner hopeful Joe Lhota and Council contender John Quaglione. But the party leader said that all three efforts are doomed.

“It makes no sense to me. It’s pure fantasy. None of these candidates is well-positioned to win,” said the Republican.

Golden denied being behind the change of plans, or having held or attended the fundraiser on Wednesday. But the senator — who said he learned of Hynes’s decision to run on Oct. 1 — praised the vanquished lawman for his 23 years of service, and predicted he would have a strong showing in November.

“I think it’s great he’ll be able to give a strong, two-party challenge,” said Golden. “His policies have made this one of the safest counties in the country, and I think people will take a second look at him.”

But on Sept. 10, Hynes himself said he did not believe he stood a chance on the other parties’ lines.

“I just don’t think it’s realistic,” Hynes said.

Reach reporter Will Bredderman at or by calling (718) 260-4507. Follow him
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Reader Feedback

JR from Midwood says:
What a disgrace. Hynes was defeated and is now trying to circumvent the process and run as a member of another party?! This is not a man that has any integrity.
Oct. 3, 2013, 11:25 am
Jay from Bay Ridge says:
This is sad and desperate.
Oct. 3, 2013, 11:41 am
Chaim from Bensonhurst says:
It is all done by David Greenfield.
Oct. 4, 2013, 11:13 am
Resident from Williamsburg says:
Who will guard against organized voting fraud in Wburg? It happened in the primary and now theres even more reason for fraud.
Oct. 4, 2013, 3:20 pm
Jim from Bay ridge says:
Only 12% voted in primary. Crime is down why put someone with no experience in such an important position. Go Hynes
Oct. 5, 2013, 11:52 am
Galina from Midwood says:
Bravo!!! He is one of the great man. And nothing to do with Mr. Greenfield.
My voice and the people with brain for Mr . Hynes.
Oct. 5, 2013, 11:58 am
Ridgeguy from Bay Ridge says:
Tnx to Hynes' leadership, a guy spent 15 years in prison for a murder he didn't commit, dozens of other cases were prosecuted via corrupt "evidence" and will clog courts again, child molesters got special protection ... Time for Hynes to go.
Oct. 5, 2013, 2:45 pm
Catherine from Bay Ridge says:
Get the facts straight was a dirty cop not Hynes who was responsible It was his office that brought light to the wrongful convictions and now he is getting blamed for something that happened before he was even DA...I agree Galina..people with a brain for HYNES Go Joe!
Oct. 5, 2013, 5:53 pm
Catherine from Bay Ridge says:
Child molesters got no special protection Everyone of them were prosecuted. Hynes did not release their names to the public until AFTER they were prosecuted.. a mistake possibly reason to vote in a man with NO experience NEVER
Oct. 5, 2013, 5:55 pm
Vin from Dyker says:
Nice spin, but wont work, catherine - and you forgot about Michael Vecchione, Hynes' screwup "right hand guy."

Maybe JH's judgment and supervisory skills arent what they used to be ...

Oct. 5, 2013, 7:48 pm
Buck Mikely from Bay Ridge says:
Have mistakes been made under Joe Hynes' watch? Sure. I challenge anyone to run an office with 1200 plus employees and never have someone under them make a mistake. When you weigh out all the good work that this man has done for the people of Brooklyn vs the same handful of instances his opponents keep bringing up, there's no comparison. The programs Hynes created to help rehabilitate and keep people out of jail plus drive crime down have made Brooklyn one of the most desirable counties in the country. Let the voters speak election day.
Oct. 6, 2013, 1:16 am
Sense of Humor from Bay Ridge says:
Buck Mikely from Bay Ridge says: "Have mistakes been made under Joe Hynes' watch?"

Right, mistakes "have" just been "made" by no one in particular and under no particular direction.

They have been very big "mistakes" and you cannot write or talk them away. Which is why many of us believe that Hynes should no longer run that office of "1200 plus employees."
Oct. 6, 2013, 3:08 pm
Buck Mikely from Bay Ridge says:
Ok Sense of Humor from Bay Ridge. I'm open to what you are saying. I seriously am. Can you lay out some of the specific instances you are speaking of, being specific as to how Hynes was negligent? Perhaps there are things I am unaware of. In my life and line of work I have only been exposed to the positive impact of his 2 decades of leadership. The gun buy back program, which was copied both city wide and in other states, his alternative to incarceration programs that help put alcoholics and addicts in treatment instead of jail (saving millions in taxpayer money), his programs for domestic violence victims, his programs to help women in the sex trade, especially those forced into it. His role in reforming the ridiculous Rockefeller Drug Laws. Let's not forget the dramatic plunge in crime since took office which turned Brooklyn from one of the most notorious counties in the country, to one of the most desirable. So in all seriousness, if there are things that he has done that were so terrible, I would like to be informed of the specifics.
Oct. 7, 2013, 2:05 am

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