New York’s political elite rubbed shoulders at the Javits Center in New York City on Thursday night for the annual Al Smith Foundation Dinner, the biggest fundraising event for the Archdiocese of New York, highlighted with a keynote speech from former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
Potential rivals who may be flirting with a 2022 Democratic bid for Governor, took the stage together for the 75th installation of the dinner, such as Gov. Kathy Hochul, Mayor Bill de Blasio, and Tish James.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan welcomed the guests with an opening prayer, in which he remembered the late Colin Powell, who died earlier this week.
This year’s dinner was hosted by Fox’s Maria Bartiromo.
Some of the political guests were more warmly welcomed than others: de Blasio received some light boos when he was introduced.
NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea, former Gov. George Pataki, former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg were also in attendance — who got a massive applause and shouts of joy.
Hochul’s new secretary to the governor Karen Keogh — whose husband is a lobbyist for the prominent Albany law firm Bolton St. Johns — was seen chatting with Lieutenant Governor Brian Benjamin as well as state Budget Director Robert Mujica, who made the cut to stay on in state government, despite being known as an ally of disgraced, ex- Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
Notable elected officials dined together at a table, including Queens Borough President Donovan Richards, Brooklyn City Councilman Justin Brannan, state Assemblyman Michael Cusick (D-Staten Island), along with city council speaker hopefuls — City Councilwoman Carlina Rivera and City Councilman Keith Powers.
State Assemblyman Brian Barnwell (D-Queens) and NYC councilwoman Adrienne Adams were also spotted at the event.
Condoleezza Rice, the event’s keynote speaker, took her fair share of jabs at some politicians, including New York Congresswoman’s infamous “Tax the Rich” dress.
“Actually I thought, what am I going to wear? Because you see it’s complicated, in New York, these days it’s not enough to just wear a dress that looks good, it has to be a dress that actually says something …,” she said, to laughs. “I’m a California Republican not a New York Congresswoman, so tax the rich didn’t really quite cut it.”
“I haven’t seen this many wine glasses since Governor Newsome dined at the French Laundry,” she said.
She also had fun with her frequent golf partner, former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg.
“Lately I’ve been thinking If I’m going to hang out with a billionaire, I’d like to hang out with one who’s going to take me to space,” she joked. “Maybe Bill de Blasio. Want to go for it mayor?”
She reflected on how people have always asked her what she plans to do next in her decorated career, alluding to her desire to replace Roger Goodell as…