By Paula Katinas
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Vanquished Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes, who was defeated in the Democratic Primary last month by Ken Thompson and was then urged by Republican and Conservative party leaders to run on their lines in November, has thrown his hat back into the ring, New York Post reported on Thursday.
Hynes’s return to the campaign marked the latest turning point in the twisting saga over who will become Brooklyn’s top prosecutor. Thompson beat Hynes 55 percent to 45 percent in the Sept. 10 Democratic Primary after which Hynes conceded the race and announced that he would help clear the way for Thompson to make a smooth transition into the district attorney’s office.
But in the weeks following the primary, Hynes was approached by several political figures, including state Sen. Marty Golden (R-C-Bay Ridge-southern Brooklyn) and New York State Conservative Party Chairman Mike Long, who urged him to run against Thompson in November.
Hynes’s name is on the election ballot on both the Republican and Conservative lines. The question surrounding him involved whether he would actively campaign.
“He clearly could possibly be in a position to win if he campaigned,” Long told the Brooklyn Daily Eagle in a recent interview.
The New York Post, citing sources close to Hynes, reported that the district attorney has decided not to leave public life after all and to actively campaign as a Republican to keep the job he has held for 24 years.
Supporters gathered for a fundraiser for Hynes at the Greenhouse Café, a Bay Ridge restaurant on Wednesday night. The Post reported that the party raised $150,000 for his re-election campaign.
In the face of the Hynes rumors, Thompson, a former federal prosecutor, was busy consolidating his support in the heavily Democratic borough. The Democratic Party was coalescing around him. On Monday, he held a unity rally on the steps of Borough Hall with supporters who included Democratic comptroller candidate Scott Stringer and public advocate candidate Letitia James.
“I’m deeply honored and humbled to have the strong support of Democrats across Brooklyn, and I look forward to serving all the people of this borough as your next district attorney,” Thompson in a statement.
“We are united in bringing a new vision to our criminal justice system," he said.
Thompson's campaign spokesman, James Freedland, blasted Hynes over his decision to run. “It’s sad that Mr. Hynes refuses to accept the will of the people, as he repeatedly pledged to do last month,” Freedland wrote in an email to the Brooklyn Daily Eagle on Oct. 3.
“We look forward to a clear contrast between Democrat Ken Thompson and Republican Joe Hynes, who has lied to the public so that he can run with Joe Lhota and the Tea Party forces in the Republican Party who have shut down the government. And we are confident all of Brooklyn's voters will render the same overwhelming verdict as they did in the primary," Freedland wrote.
***Updated to include quotes from Ken Thompson's campaign spokesman.***