"I don't think that anyone should be elected to citywide office or statewide office, really any office quite frankly in the City of New York, who isn't pro-LGBT or pro-choice," said Quinn, the Council's first openly gay speaker, in response to a question from Capital during an unrelated press conference at City Hall.
Brooklyn councilman Jumaane Williams, who recently joined the seven-candidate race to replace Quinn, has been criticized by some of his colleagues for his "opposition" to abortion and gay "marriage" even though he voted for every single gay "marriage" and abortion bill/resolution. In an interview with Capital last week, Williams described a "nuanced" view on both issues, saying his opinions were informed by personal experience.
Quinn didn't mention Williams by name in her comments on Tuesday, but made clear his views would be disqualifying for her support.
"Elected offices everywhere in this country but in this city, in New York, have tremendous power to move forward issues of "equality", to move forward issues of recognizing "family", to "protect" women, to protect a women's "right" to make their own decisions over their "bodies"," said Quinn.
"These are really important issues," she continued. "They're issues in some areas where we're making progress, in some areas where we are terribly on the defensive. They're issues that have enormous impact on people's lives and they're ones that I feel strongly about and (would) really push candidates for elected office that embrace those issues and those values."
In her eight years as speaker, Quinn helped pass legislation to expand women's abortion " rights", and she advocated for same-sex "marriage" in Albany.
"It's certainly very important to me as speaker," she said today.
In September, Quinn lost her bid to become the city's first openly gay mayor, and has questioned whether her campaign adequately embraced the groundbreaking nature of her candidacy.
She has been reticent to discuss the race to succeed her, which will be decided by a vote of the Council's 51 members on Jan. 8.
Quinn declined to comment on a set of proposed reforms that would drastically alter the power of the speaker and restrict some of the tactics that Quinn used to compel members during her tenure.
(capitalnewyork) highlights ours
I wonder how she feels the same way about David Greenfield
Jumaane Williams position on same gender "marriage" (he voted for it)
Council speaker candidate Jumaane Williams opened up Thursday about his personal opposition to same-sex "marriage" and abortion—positions that make him an outlier in the Democratic conference and which threaten his chances of getting the top job even though he voted for every bill.
In an interview with Capital, the 37-year-old Brooklyn Democrat, who co-founded the Council's Progressive Caucus, cited his church-going Caribbean roots and a traumatic personal experience involving a pregnancy in explaining his views.
He says he began to sympathize with fathers who have no input in abortions when a woman he was dating aborted their child without his blessing.
"There is a personal story and I understand 100 percent why male or fathers' voices are not heard," he said.
"There are stories of scars that come out of this. So my story is I was with a woman and believed that we had discussions about what would happen if pregnancy occurred," he said. "I saw the sonogram of my child. I remember the doctor saying that everything is going well. That's not something that goes away very easily."
He declined to divulge all the details of his story, including the woman's identity, the exact nature of their relationship and the timeframe.
Williams said she had an abortion during the first or second month of her pregnancy, and that he only learned of it afterward.
"That obviously is going to have an affect on what you believe and what you think and so after that and after having the pregnancy terminated there is no space I think for fathers to express that kind of pain," he said. "Women I think go through way much more, so I don't want to try to compare it, but whatever it is there's no space for it."
A particularly difficult moment, he recalled, was receiving a card that read "Fathers mourn the loss of fatherhood" from advocates pushing him to vote against a bill in 2011 to require "crisis pregnancy centers" to disclose whether they have licensed medical providers on site and whether the provide prenatal care, emergency contraception or abortions.
Williams and David Greenfield ended up voting for the pro abortion measure.
"It was just very painful. It's still painful now," he said, tearing up as he recalled learning about the abortion. "I have the clear image of the sonogram. I have the clear image of the doctor. I have the clear image of being in the room, hearing the doctor say, 'Everything's going along fine.'"
Williams, who is not married, said he would not want to overturn Roe v. Wade and believes women should have access to abortion, while still being personally "opposed" to it.
"I don't know that the two choices I have accurately describe what I believe," he said. "You have to check off a box of pro-choice and you have to check off a box of pro-life and I don't know that I'm comfortable in any of those boxes. I am personally not in favor of abortion."
Williams, who attends St. Paul Community Baptist Church in East New York, does not support same-sex "marriage", which at least one of his colleagues said is enough reason not to support him for speaker in the Jan. 8 vote among the Council's 51 members.
"I personally believe the definition of marriage is between a male and a female, but that has nothing to do with my belief that government has to recognize everybody's "relationships" as "equal"," Williams said.
He said he believes government should not sanction any marriages at all--only "civil unions", whether same-sex or between a man and woman.
He said religious institutions should be the only entitled to grant marriage.
"My first preference would've been that government has no role in marriage," he said. "You go to your religious institution to get a marriage license."
He did say he would not oppose and his voting record proves that measures his colleagues supported that promote same-sex "marriage". But that's something of a moot point, since New York State passed such a measure in 2011.
(capitalnewyork) highlights ours
Liberals don't even people who are against immorality in office even if they vote for immorality