Tag Archive: john haggerty

Oct 10 2013

Convicted Felon Serves On Bob Turner’s Legal Team

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According to eyewitnesses, when they came into court and saw Haggerty sitting next to Tom Ognibene, they thought he was on trial. Instead it was Haggerty trying to take over the Queens Republican Party (something he’s failed to do for the past 12 years) positioned on the plaintiffs side, a side he is not accustom to being in. Photo: John Haggerty awaits his sentencing. Photo from the NYPOST.

In the history of corrupt political practices…

A few weeks after the disastrous hate-filled republican reorganization meeting, just when you thought things could get no more bizarre in the Queens GOP feud, who shows up and sits second chair next to Tom Ognibene in defense of  former Congressman Bob Turner and the Eric Ulrich-run attempt to overthrow Chairman Ragusa? According to multiple sources, none other than John Haggerty, a convicted felon who stole a million dollars from Michael Bloomberg and is out on appeal pending his request for a retrial.

Contacted for a response, Robert Hornak, Executive Chairman of the Queens GOP was baffled.

John Haggerty was in court today representing Congressman Turner and I find it mind boggling that he would allow such a person to represent him.”

First, it has to be shocking for former Congressman Turner, a well-respected and articulate Republican spokesperson to allow a convicted felon to sit in defense of his claim to being the new chair of the Queens GOP. It leads one to think if he was elected, what type of republican leadership would we have? While both sides have had their problems, one thing remains clear: Just a few weeks ago the Queens GOP held a meeting and the results were definitive. Phil Ragusa was re-elected chairman while Eric Ulrich cried that the results were unfair.

If the results were truly unfair, then why didn’t the renegades file an order to show cause asking for an independent monitor to elect a new chairman? Is it because they knew they didn’t have the votes to win? Or perhaps Tom Ognibene was merely taking lessons on how to steal from John Haggerty? Nevertheless, Turner’s decision to allow a convicted felon to defend his right to be chairman is quite perplexing. It leaves us to believe Bob Turner would do anything for political power including associating himself with one of the most corrupt politician in years who stole more than Tony Seminerio, Sheldon Leffeler, Brian McLaughlin, and so on and so on.

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2013/10/convicted-felon-sits-second-chair-for-bob-turner/

Feb 16 2013

A conversation with Eric Mingott on the GOP Proxy War

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“If you don’t like the leader you challenge them in an election – you don’t sabotage them.”

Eric Mingott is a proud Republican. He’s a former Marine and presently works as a tax accountant, but his heart is – and forever shall be – in service to the public. Mingott was a hopeful for the 35th Assembly District until his dreams were crushed after John Haggerty knocked him off the ballot, but now (as he’s eying another run for office) he’s looking to the future to rebuild a fractured Republican party.

During his campaign in 2012, Mingott had taken the time to register friends and family with the Republican Party so that they could serve as witnesses to his petitions. “Family, friends, they registered republican because of me — and we’re glad and proud — but the BOE didn’t process them in time,” he said.  Mingott said he collected 260 signatures out of the 185. “We received enough but at the end of the day, but we failed because of the witnesses.”

Then John Haggerty showed up at court.  He was one of the “perps whose hands were in it and exposed themselves to knocking me off the ballot,” said Mingott.  Haggerty, a convicted felon that specialized in the nuances of election law, challenged Mingott’s petitions. But Mingott didn’t have his own election lawyer fearing it would cost too much money and reasoned with himself that, after all, it was a Hispanic coalition and the Future Majority Project (an advocacy organization which helps Hispanics and women win public office) that had put their faith in him and propped up his grassroots campaign. However, he said for the sake of the Party, and for solidarity, he backed off when Haggerty attacked.   “We’d have been in court until after the primary,” he joked at his decision which he regrets everyday. “I am a Marine and Marines never give up.”

His experience is one small battle of a war that has been going on for 30 years. Most recently, insiders consider the illegal appointee just part of a ‘proxy war’ waged by southern Queens rebels Tom Ognibene and Eric Ulrich. However, Mingott does not believe that the ends justify the means.

“If you don’t like the leader you challenge them in an election – you don’t sabotage them,” said Mingott.

But Mingott, who considers himself part of the old school of gentleman politics, believes if “they said they mailed it, then they must have mailed it” and that the public humiliation of either side is ungentlemanly.

“Why would someone in that position lie,” he asked while insisting the matter be handled in-house. “Within the party, our infighting should not be public, which is the best way to go.”

It looks as if it will be a tough battle looming ahead as the Judge’s decision is appealed in court. Although Mingott doesn’t know Michael Michel, he knows Judith Stupp and said she ran the BOE to the best of her abilities. “These are pure party positions where we need good citizens because at the end of the day the American people are the ones that will be hurting. New Yorkers in general getting hurt, the voters are getting hurt — it’s not about sneaking things in at the last minute” he relented.

Mingott believes the proxy war is doing irreparable harm to the Party’s image. “We’re hoping we can move the party into a better position; it’s not about leadership, the party leadership is there…but more and more everyday people don’t want to be republicans because of the mass-media  looking at us as anti-everything. It’s not about leadership it’s about resources.”

In the 35th AD in the East Elmhurst \ Corona section of Queens with incumbent Jeffrion Aubry, the GOP are outnumbered 10 to 1 and trying to get a Republican movement in his district would be a tough undertaking. Despite the odds, Mingott seems undaunted. “People don’t want to hear us because of what the national level republicans are preaching.” Again, Mingott insisted it’s not for lack of leadership. “Our leadership is there we need younger people and fresh faces.  It’s time to focus on elections and reelecting our candidates and finding new ones. The infighting serves no purpose.”

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2013/02/a-conversation-with-eric-mingott-on-the-gop-proxy-war/

Aug 10 2012

Estrada to Haggerty: You are destructive to the growth of the Hispanic and African American Community!

"Haggerty to Myrna Littlewort who are against the leadership of the Queens County GOP have become destructive to the growth of the Hispanic and African American Community in the 35th Assembly District," says Ruben Estrada.

A searing open letter from Ruben Estrada to the Haggerty brothers.

“Hispanics need not apply”

Motto of the Haggerty Brothers (John and Bart Haggerty)

Today I write to inform the public of the most intolerable discriminatory actions perpetuated on viable, respectable and honorable American Hispanic Republican candidate in Queens County.  Allow me to introduce myself and that which I represent and moreover the major national Republican Party initiative developed, and being implemented with the interest of reaching out to the Hispanic community.

I am writing this personally as a lifelong Republican Party builder, and in my capacity as the area coordinator of the Future Majority Project “FMP” who identified and supported Eric M.  Mingott, Candidate for the NYS Assembly 35th Assembly District, a decision of which I applaud.

The Republican State Leadership Committee’s (RSLC) Future Majority Project has a goal of growing the Republican family in three areas: Americans of Hispanic descent, women and young voters. Specific to this campaign, the goal is to identify 100 new state level candidates of Hispanic descent and provide advice, resources and support to help elect at least 30 diverse candidates in the 2012 election cycle.

As the designated coordinator of FMP, our efforts in New York have been aggressive and positive.  My involvement as coordinator allowed me to assist in identifying true viable and electable Republican state level candidates of Hispanic descent within New York.

Our objectives include: recruit at least 100 new Hispanic legislative candidates across the country, increase the number of female Republican legislative candidates and partner with the College Republican National Committee for a national youth training and mobilization program.

As a lifelong American Republican of Puerto Rican heritage born and raised in El Barrio (Spanish Harlem), Republican Party Builder and Chairman of the Latino National Republican Coalition of New York, I have been recognized by the Republican National Committee as a Republican Hispanic leader in the United States, Member of the RNC Hispanic Steering Committee and the most active Hispanic Republican advocating for Hispanic inclusion nationally and particularly in New York State.

Most recently I have had the pleasure of meeting, and recommending for support to the FMP the candidacy to New York State Assembly in the 35 Assembly District of Queens, NY a very impressive and committed Hispanic Candidate with true Republican values (a young man with the ability to be the voice of equality and opportunities in his community) Mr. Eric M. Mingott.

I must commend Eric M. Mingott with the honorable attempt he had made in securing a place on the ballot for NYS Assembly in the 35th A.D.  Eric M. Mingott had recently resigned from his position with the Internal Revenue Service in order to help improve his community and create employment opportunities in the 35th A.D.  He is currently working on sponsoring three legislative bills that would create local manufacturing jobs and attract investors to the 35th Assembly District in order to support small business and improve the overall quality of life in neighborhoods such as East Elmhurst, Corona, Jackson Heights and Rego Park.

Yet, I find it very difficult to accept that the self-interest negative bigoted entities known as the “Hispanics need not apply” Haggerty brothers (John and Bart Haggerty) within the Queens Republican party for negatively influencing the outcome of the nomination and designation of Mr. Mingott’s candidacy.  John Haggerty along with Myrna Littlewort and Gigi Salvadore (all registered Republicans) has proven once again that their self-interest and selfishness comes before the best interest of our community and party (Republican Party).  Once again the actions of rebel groups, such as those, from John

Haggerty to Myrna Littlewort who are against the leadership of the Queens County GOP have become destructive to the growth of the Hispanic and African American Community in the 35th Assembly District.

With that said, and although the decision was made, one which must have been difficult for the Board of Elections; I must state that the negative influences internally and externally within the Republican party of those such as John Haggerty and Bart Haggerty (employees, supporters, friends, and colleagues of New York City Councilman Eric Ulrich); and the ever so trivial personal and territorial egos of Myrna Littlewort and Gigi Salvador has caused the results of the disqualifying the nomination and designation of the only candidate seeking ballot, a Hispanic Republican in the 35th Assembly District, Eric M. Mingott.

Notwithstanding, the irony of the efforts by the Haggerty brothers and their allies, understand that it was void of an opposing candidate seeking the nomination and designation to the 35 AD, Queens County. Objections and opposition to the candidacy of Eric M. Mingott is merely one of hate opposition of Hispanic inclusion and outright bigoted.  The actions by the Haggerty brothers bring a negative effect on those Hispanic potential candidates may they be just contemplating a run for public office or well supported viable Republican Hispanic’s.  This resonates negatively to our well respected national and statewide initiative of increasing Hispanic Republican representation.

Republicans in Queens County should be ashamed of the Haggerty brothers, the law and/or judge who have allowed them to continue their destructive involvement in politics, perpetuate their obvious bigotry, and permit a known convicted criminal and their allies to set policy.

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2012/08/estrada-to-haggerty-you-are-destructive-to-the-growth-of-the-hispanic-and-african-american-community/

Aug 08 2012

A Night Out With Crime featuring John Haggerty & Eric Ulrich


Seems kind of odd to see a felon and an elected official arriving together on an night meant to foster positive relationships between the community and the police department, just ask Juan Reyes who witnessed it first hand.

Reyes, who is running against Eric Ulrich in a Republican Primary, noticed something very peculiar about Ulrich’s visit to National Night Out Against Crime, he had a criminal in tow.

In a press statement, Reyes points out the strange relationship between Ulrich and Haggerty which became clear as day when Haggerty accompanied Ulrich at National Night Out Against Crime.

“My Republican Primary opponent, Eric Ulrich, continues to use a convicted felon, John Haggerty, as his top political advisor. His campaign sounds like a Night Out With Crime,” he said.

And Reyes may not be that far off from the truth. Haggerty was convicted for stealing campaign funds from the Mayor and has been seen by Ulrich’s side for the entire Senate campaign – even down at the Board of Elections (and in the court room) in an official capacity for Ulrich’s campaign.

Hard to imagine that Haggerty has turned a new leaf of reform. Rich, politically connected white males hardly see any justice. So has John done his Penance? No, he’s been invited back into the same element that gave him access to commit high crimes against the voters of NYC, and the Mayor, courtesy of Councilman Eric Ulrich.

If this election is about character and integrity of our elected officials, Reyes wins.

Someone should make a call to the Attorney General or Haggerty’s parole judge.

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2012/08/a-night-out-with-crime-featuring-john-haggerty-eric-ulrich-oh-happy-day-gop-crime/

Jun 19 2012

Ulrich Caught ‘Hanging Out’ With Convicted Felon

All Milk and Shirley Temples

A group of gentleman gathered  at Rosey O’ Grady’s saloon after the annual Conservative Party Gala. Warm and casual, the bar is long regarded as a New York institution – the kind of place to meet some friends over a cold draft or a signature cocktail. But all was not well this evening. Some old school tensions surfaced which spoiled a pleasant night out. At the bar, the Queens GOP was hanging out, shooting the breeze with friends and colleagues. Across the bar and a sea of people, in a far corner of the room sat Eric Ulrich with convicted felon John Haggerty chatting thick as thieves over a few glasses of cheap scotch. A lightbulb went off and Ulrich suddenly had a novel idea, let’s send over a glass of milk to the Queens GOP.

The initial reception was confusion, but then reality sunk in: a felon and a  Council man were goading the Party with a cheap shot, another dirty deed meant to intimidate Eric’s primary challenger, Juan Reyes.

Ladies and gents, this is convicted felon John Haggerty blocking his picture from being taken with Councilman Eric Ulrich.

To JD’s credit, he shrugged it off. In return, a Shirley Temple was sent back to Eric, a symbol of childhood. But not everyone was amused. In the GOP’s entourage was a Judge, a parole Judge familiar with Haggerty’s parole conditions. Questions were raised. How could a man who embezzled millions of dollars be schmoozing at a bar with City Councilman Eric Ulrich at 2 A.M?

The sight of an elected official sitting with a convicted felon is questionable, unethical, perhaps even illegal. Flashing lights alerted Ulrich while everyone at the bar whipped out their phones to snap pictures of the duo. Detested by the sight of a crime in progress, the fearless Judge parted his way through the crowd for the close up shot. Ulrich scurried away like a cockroach while Haggerty sprung from his seat to block the politically devastating photo.

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2012/06/ulrich-caught-hanging-out-with-john-haggerty-both-criminals/

May 30 2012

Update on the Queens GOP

There has been a lot of gossip regarding a supposed FBI probe into the Queens GOP, but our research indicates this is false; there is NO FBI investigation.

Where did the lie begin? It is rumored that renegade Councilman Eric Ulrich personally corroborated with three sources to relay the same fictional story to the press.

The intent was to harm the Party. Ulrich has long bred insurrection in the Queens GOP and some people even call him a Democrat incognito. Longstanding supporters feel that his submission to Christine Quinn has compromised his Republican ideology.

Meet the axemen. The president of the Northeast Queens Republican Club, John Watch, is alleged to be the chief facilitator in spreading the groundless rumors through dishonesty and fabrication of lies. He seems personally angry with the GOP for endorsing Juan Reyes over Eric Ulrich.

John Watch uses his Facebook page to spread the agenda of GOP stalwarts, Tom Ognibene, Bart and John Haggerty, and Councilman Eric Ulrich.

Watch is openly supportive of John Haggerty, a convicted felon best known for stealing money from Mayor Bloomberg.

Haggerty’s brother, Bart Haggerty is the Chief of Staff for Councilman Ulrich. Both are regulars at the N.E Queens Republican Club.

In the meantime the Queens GOP has been quietly rebuilding with new blood and fresh ideas. As an organization they are doing quite well, despite the bogus headlines.

More on this to follow

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2012/05/update-on-the-queens-gop-reyes-ulrich-beef/

Apr 12 2012

Invitation: John F. Haggerty Legal Defense Fund Social

Some cause happiness wherever they go; others whenever they go. ~Oscar Wilde

The Bloomberg gravy train is over, John Haggerty needs your help.

Queens-Politics came across the following Facebook invite created by Lynn Krogh. The event will raise money for John Haggerty’s legal bills and you’re invited.

[From FB] The “John F. Haggerty Legal Defense Fund” has been created to help pay for the legal fees associated with John’s legal defense in the criminal case against him.

We invite you to join John’s many friends and supporters for a night of food, drinks, and political-prognosticating.

Suggested contributions: __Primary Level $250.00 __Delegate Level $500.00 __Incumbent Level $1,000.00

All contributions generously donated will be deposited with the sole Trustee of the Legal Defense Trust and used exclusively to fund the legal team representing John.

Please RSVP to:

Tom Doherty: tdoherty@mercuryllc.com

Patrick McCarthy: pmcc0324@gmail.com

Walt Breakell: wcbreakell@hotmail.com

*Checks should be made payable to the John F. Haggerty Legal Defense Fund. If you are unable to attend, please mail checks to Thomas F. Doherty, Trustee 22 Patriot Crossing Rockaway, NJ 07866.

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2012/04/invitation-john-f-haggerty-legal-defense-fund-social/

Feb 28 2012

Dare To Be Rich!

All I want for Christmas is a John Haggerty coffee mug.

A reader passed along a very interesting website that sells t-shirts, totebags, Iphone cases and other knick-knacks emblazoned with “Free John Haggerty,” the man who stole millions from Mayor Bloomberg and engineered the destruction of the Queens GOP.

According to CafePress.com, different designers are able to upload their own images. Unfortunately, they do not release any information as to who uploaded the images or how much of a markup the designer will be taking.

Who’s going to get rich? In lieu of any previous agreement, 10% of the sale price goes toward the designer.

Get  them while they’re hot, or not.

 

When cleaning yourself, think of John Haggerty.

 

 

Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2012/02/dare-to-be-rich/

Jan 16 2012

Ulrich Orders Ingrate Special At Russo’s

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Ulrich hurls accusations while members of his inner circle are of questionable integrity.

Like rubbing salt in the old wound.

After the Judge ruled Phil Ragusa as the Chairman plenipotentiary of the Queens GOP, City Councilman Ulrich, who received political help from the GOP during his campaign, gives an old fashion public backstabbing to Robert Hornak and Vince Tabone.

Queens-Politics is outraged. How do people in glass houses throw stones?

Bart Haggerty is Eric’s Chief of staff and rumored to have constructed a special bell tower  for himself in the mansion that John Haggerty – his brother who stole from the Mayor -  in Forest Hills, sort of  like Quasimodo.

Even though Mr. Modo has never been indicted, we are concerned about the involvement he may have had in the 28th A.D Housekeeping account – a one in a kind slush fund that could have been used to pay John Haggertys legal bills, or for an extravagant home in Forest Hills.

Haggerty’s dirty fingerprints are everywhere.

The account was formed as a PAC that  operated out of John’s home, according to a report in the Post. However, full financial disclosure has not been released to the public and seems to be a well-guarded secret.

Some questions remain. How do we know where the money was spent?

Could John have promised the Mayor to oust Phil Ragusa as part of the negotiation?

At least there is full disclosure of the northeast Queens GOP account.

Meanwhile, insiders want to know what are the Haggertys hiding? Is there a cover up perpetrated by the insurgent faction of the GOP?

And this is part of a bigger problem: Where is the unity? Why won’t Ulrich and company sit down at the table of brotherhood instead of driving a wedge into the struggling party?

Democrats are thrilled about the GOP power struggle and are waiting to pick up the shattered pieces.

Please note, a felon is still the treasurer of the housekeeping fund.

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2012/01/ulrich-orders-ingrate-special-at-russos/

Dec 20 2011

Miscarriage Of Justice: Golem Sentenced To Brief Prison Term

I'll be back, said John Haggerty. My lawyers will be appealing the verdict on the grounds that becoming the laughingstock is restitution for the crimes I've committed.

Infamous political operative John Haggerty, who stole 750,000 from Mayor Bloomberg and used it to buy a lavish house in Forest Hills was sentenced yesterday to 3-4 years of hard time following his conviction on second-degree grand larceny and second-degree money laundering charges.

During the trial, Haggerty’s lawyers portrayed him as an ‘honorable’ and  ‘well-respected man’ who had made a severe error, according to the New York Times. Obviously they never met him, although going to trial with a lawyer who considers your whole life-style a Crime in Progress is not a happy prospect.

Get this, Judge Zweibel believed John’s prison conviction would restore faith in the political system. Meanwhile, it did not. Over 40 well-wishers – presumably all the Republicans in South Queens wrote letters on John’s behalf to the Judge vouching for his character and pleading for leniency.

So much for Justice.

 

New York Times: Addressing the court, Mr. Haggerty, who is divorced and has no children, admitted that the positive reputation he had cultivated throughout his long career in the inner circles of New York politics had been destroyed by his crime.

“I can only do what is right in the future,” he said.

Justice Zweibel ordered Mr. Haggerty to pay restitution of $750,000, the amount he was convicted of stealing from Mr. Bloomberg by tricking his campaign aides into donating to the state’s Independence Party in 2009. Mr. Haggerty had promised to use the money to set up an Election Day voting-security operation, but instead used the money to buy a house, prosecutors said.

Mr. Haggerty was taken from the courtroom to begin serving his sentence immediately.

His lawyers plan to appeal the verdict.

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2011/12/miscarriage-of-justice/

Oct 27 2011

Oh No, The South Queens Insurgency Is Sinking Fast!

Credit Juniper Park Patriots Photo

Original or fried?

It will take years for the Queens GOP to recover from the recklessness of Machiavellian schemer of the year, Tom Ognibene and his gang of cohorts.

As you know, John Haggerty was sentenced to prison for stealing from Mayor Bloomberg, but readers want to know, is he in cahoots with his brother Bart, infamous political operative, and Chief of Staff to City Council Member Eric Ulrich (R-Rockaway)?

Could it be the same guy trying to steal the Queens GOP chairmanship?

 

Yes he is. The money John siphoned from the Mayor’s campaign war chest was used as a payoff to his brother Bart Haggerty for a fancy house on a hill where they presumably ate the fruit from the poisoned tree.

What does this mean for the Queens GOP power debacle?

Former GOP Chairman Serphin Maltese, last of the Romans, kept the Haggerty’s on a leash by keeping them hungry and feeding them tiny morsels like dogs under the kitchen table. Little did Serph know he was inadvertently feeding  their malevolent lust for power.

I had a mental picture of the courtroom. Who would stand on the Ognibene side? A few nobody’s and a pesky critter known as Eric Ulrich? Yep, according to reports, that’s all that showed up.

It was like a scene from the OK Corral, but much more like the last stand of Colonel Sanders.

Birds of a feather…


Ognibene is no stranger to controversy, he was once named as an unindicted co-conspirator in an unrelated case involving bribery. While the final decision to end the civil war is still pending, in the criminal trial of John Haggerty bail was set at $250,000 because Judge Zweibel heard that John may have an Irish passport that he could have used to skip town. It may not be true, but I wouldn’t put it past him.

Mayor gets screwed, but it’s really a drop in the bucket for him. Still doesn’t justify theft. So would Mayor Bloomberg hire one of the Haggertys, again? Doubtful. Bloomberg is almost term-limited out of office, so they won’t be needed. Will we ever see the likes of the Haggertys influencing the underworld of Queens politics? No, but we will still see Tom Ognibene’s sometimes arch-rival, Bart Haggerty pulling the strings of marionette councilmember Eric Ulrich, the warlord of South Queens.

Queens GOP spokesman Robert Hornak whom in a previous interview, predicted the outcome of the trial and lends his foresight on the chairmanship struggle.

“I think this is their last hurrah, John Haggerty will be in a state-house [prison] and Tom Ognibene… he’ll find something else to do.”

He also summed up the tenure of Ulrich as the Benedict Arnold Council Member who turned his back on the party that helped get him elected in 2009.

Eric is somewhat immature and short-sighted for an elected official. It’s probably to feed his ego and personal aspirations.” 

It’s just too bad they couldn’t work things out with Chairman Phil. They really believed Ragusa was a sitting duck, according to an inside source. This squabbling is nothing new. Bart Haggerty filed the same suit challenging Ragusa in 2005, and 2007. In 2009 they played nice to win the Council seat for Eric in Howard Beach, District 32. Friends today. Enemies tomorrow. No consistency. They never trusted any of the real Queens GOP from the north.

They didn’t even trust each other. Ognibene strung Bart along, while Bart thought he strung Ognibene along. They both hated Ragusa.

Ognibene and company used to toy around with disgraced GOP City Council Member Dennis Gallagher who was arrested for raping a grandmother above his campaign office, presumably on the same desk where Ulrich ate his lunch. The charges were later dropped after Dennis pled guilty to misdemeanor sex charges for assaulting the elderly woman. Democrat Liz Crowley now holds the seat.

Political Parties Pool Their Resources

I saw Dennis Gallagher while working a poll site in Flushing for John Liu and Yen Chou. Dennis was setting up sandwich boards for now Council Member Peter Koo (R-20). He shot me a cockeyed look when I noticed he went beyond the point of electioneering setting up Peter Koo’s sandwich boards with big bold red lettering on the side that read “Property of Mike Ricatta.”  In 2008 Mike hired a giant campaign bus with “Mike Ricatto Special Election 32nd City Council District” emblazoned on the side to drive up and down Cross Bay Blvd. The bus hit and killed an innocent kid. My heart goes out to that little boy.

Ognibene never liked me and I never liked him. He took issue with my graduate degree in American Government, which Eric had not finished, my board  membership in a very liberal democratic club, and he got wind of the fact  that I tutored Eric in Graduate School in American Government. Ognibene from the start was always breathing down my neck and making me feel very uncomfortable. You could cut the tension with a knife. I had to get out of there quickly. I resigned partly because I felt Ognibene wanted to run his own campaign through Eric, and a better opportunity had arose for me elsewhere with more level headed folk. Ognibene had prior plans to install Bart as Eric’s Chief of Staff – after all the work was complete – so there was no room for me anyway. I left a few weeks before the general election and helped John Liu become Comptroller of the City of New York.

Chairman Phil was almost unanimously elected at the Flushing Reception House.

The only exception was bootlicking former State Assembly Candidate and GOP District Leader Anthony Nunziato, who is scared to death of Tom Ognibene and who once tried to stick me with the bill for his $45 T-bone and Ceasar salad at Uncle Jack’s Steakhouse in Bayside. He showed up to Ragusas meeting and voted Ognibene. No surprise there.

Why so much struggle over a Chairmanship? Azi Paybarah explains in Capital New York:

“Here’s the thing: The person who takes control of the party now will be at the helm as the city enters the 2013 election cycle, where the mayor’s seat and nearly every other city office will be up for grabs. 

Candidates who have the resources to do so will presumably sprinkle lots of money around to organizations and clubs as they seek to form new bonds and underwrite campaign activities. A chairman’s organization is one good place to spend money.

The chairman of a county organization also has a powerful role to play in granting a waiver to allow non-party members to run on their ballot, granting what’s known as a Wilson-Pakula. So, being chairman does have its perks.”

Bart and Ognibene are two different people with divergent agendas. They don’t seem to match up -although they are united by their passion for cracking off color  jokes. I’ll never forget that one. You laughed. You’re all guilty of xenophobia. There’s something to be said about that. Ulrich hired, or had to hire, Tom Ognibene’s son, Guy Ognibene as Legislative Director. So the proof is in the pudding. Nepotism.

It took the prospect of unseating Phil to settle their rocky relationship and bring the ol’ South Queens gang back together.

If everyone played nice than maybe we would have a solid Republican voice in Queens. Stealing is very bad guys, but not all is lost. The GOP have a fresh hope on the northside, so it’s a step in the right direction for the party. I’m not going to sing Chairman Phil’s praises but he’s clearly better choice for the future. Without them, the Democratic machine would run unopposed!

Cheers to Tom Ognibene, the soon to be the exiled pariah of the Queens GOP. Maybe he’ll open a chicken stand? I don’t know, email me about it info@queens-politics.com.

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2011/10/tom-ognibene/

Oct 21 2011

John Haggerty & Alan Hevesi… Prison Cell Mates?


I hope Council Member Ulrich sends you some cookies.

John Haggerty, an infamous Queens GOP political operative is headed up the river.

According to a report in Crains NY, Jurors found John Haggerty guilty today of grand larceny and money laundering, ending a case that has put a spotlight on the billionaire mayor and the inner workings of his campaigns

Haggerty was accused of an elaborate phantom ballot security operation. What’s that? That’s when a candidate, a political party, or consulting firm organize and send experienced campaigners down to the poll sites on election day, typically to make sure the opposition is playing by the rules.

John billed the Mayor for this and didn’t produce —  instead he pocketed the the cash and went on a personal spending frenzy.

John Haggerty may serve up to 15 years. Because this is Haggertys first offense, that we know of,  he is likely to serve 3-5 years of hard time, according to an inside source.

Haggerty is long known for his political ties to Tom Ognibene, former minority leader of the City Council who was once indicted as a co-conspirator in an unrelated case. John’s brother Bart Haggerty also serves as Chief of Staff to abrasive Council Member Eric Ulrich.

Juiced in? Maybe not.

In prison, you get to watch TV, cable even.

It is rumored  that John Haggerty may share a cell with political rival and former disgraced Comptroller of New York , Alan Hevesi who is serving a one to four years at the Ulster Correctional Facility in upstate Napanoch for a pension fund pay-to-play scandal.

The poster children for everything wrong in government will have ample time to hone their criminals skills.

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2011/10/haggerty-to-meet-hevesi-in-prison/

Oct 14 2011

Update On The Trial (s) of John Haggerty, GOP Operative

Political operative John Haggerty leaves Manhattan Supreme Court. A campaign committee run by Haggerty is three months late in filing its disclosure statement to the state Board of Elections. AP Photo/Seth Wenig

From Queens Campaigner.

Haggerty Group Under Fire

By Howard Koplowitz

Oct 13th, 2011

A campaign committee controlled by Queens Republican political operative John Haggerty, who is on trial for allegedly stealing $1.1 million of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s money, is three months late in filing its disclosure report with the state Board of Elections, a BOE spokesman said Tuesday.

Haggerty, a Forest Hills resident, started the 28th Assembly District Republican Committee in October 2009 with a $20 deposit, according to campaign finance records.

In November 2009, about three weeks after he was elected to a third term, Bloomberg wired $120,000 to the committee, records showed.

Campaign committees are required to file their disclosure reports every six months with the BOE.

The last filing for the 28th Assembly District Republican Committee was made in January. It has yet to report its July disclosures.

Haggerty attorney Dennis Vacco could not be reached for comment.

For Full Article: http://www.queenscampaigner.com/2011/10/haggerty-group-under-fire/john-haggerty/

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*Bart Haggerty is Chief of Staff For Council Member Eric Ulrich (R-Rockaways).

Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2011/10/haggerty-in-over-his-head/


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