Navigate to News section

Mayoral Hopefuls Head to Hampton Synagogue

Candidates for New York City mayor head east in final campaigning push

Batya Ungar-Sargon
July 25, 2013
Westhampton Beach.(Panoramio)
Westhampton Beach.(Panoramio)

With the New York City mayoral primaries a scant six weeks away, the candidates are scuttling around searching for final funding. To this end, one place the mayoral hopefuls are flocking to is the affluent Hampton Synagogue in Westhampton Beach, the New York Times reports; two candidates have already visited, and five more are slated to stop by in the coming weeks. “They all reach out to me,” Rabbi Marc Schneier, the limelight-loving leader of the synagogue, boasted to the Times.

Schneier and his father, Rabbi Arthur Schneier, are no strangers to publicity—or, for that matter, controversy. The elder Schneier was criticized earlier this year when he announced that his Appeal of Conscience Foundation’s annual award for religious freedom would be given to Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, a man whose regime human rights activists say fosters persecution of minorities.

The younger Schneier’s controversies are more of the Page Six variety. For a complete picture, read Allison Hoffman’s in-depth 2011 profile:

Even after going through the tabloid wringer, Schneier still prides himself on the attention he gets from the press. When I asked him about an old clip about a Passover Seder he celebrated in 1993 with Raul Julia, Schneier immediately nodded, saying, “Yeah, on ‘Page Six.’ ” When I said the item I’d seen had come from the Jewish Forward, he shook his head. “Also on ‘Page Six,’ ” he insisted, referring to the New York Post’s legendary gossip roundup. “No, no, it was ‘Page Six.’”

Batya Ungar-Sargon is a freelance writer who lives in New York. Her Twitter feed is @bungarsargon.