The first hour of the debate, co-hosted by WABC-TV, was broadcast on television and was perhaps the biggest scene so far for the mayoral candidates, although the station anticipated the second hour with a game show, “Press Your Luck,” requiring viewers to switch to another channel or an online stream.
After months of frozen online forums, Wednesday’s debate turned into a price fight, with fans of the contestants organize gatherings outside the Upper West Side TV studio, waving signs, screaming music and mingling with suitors.
Inside, several candidates seemed eager for a confrontation. During the tense exchanges between Mr. Yang and Mr. Adams, Mr. Yang suggested that the tips for confronting others about the use of illicit fireworks led to the death of a woman, and Mr. Adams said at another point that people of color are “often wrongly accused in this country” and asked Mr. Yang to apologize for his innuendo about the corruption.
Scott M. Stringer, the city comptroller who kept a low profile in the first debate, issued scathing denunciations of several of his rivals. “As your consultants have told you time and time again, they admit that you are an empty ship,” Mr. Stringer told Mr. Yang, looking over his podium to address the former candidate directly. the presidential election. “Actually, I don’t think you are an empty ship. I think you’re a Republican who continues to focus on the issues that won’t bring the economy back. “
Mr Stringer, who presents himself as a progressive with deep experience in government, also tore Maya Wiley, former adviser to Mayor Bill de Blasio, claiming she had been a “rubber stamp” for the Police Benevolent Association when she presided over the civil complaint. Review board.
And he suggested that Mr. Adams and others think that “the only way to prevent crime is to go back to the Giuliani days with stop-and-frisk and a Republican agenda that put a lot of kids in. our criminal justice system “.
Ms Wiley, who has defended his tenure, criticized Mr Yang’s record as head of Venture for America, the non-profit organization he led before running for president, over his record of creating a ‘jobs and how, according to records, he failed to recruit many participants of color. And in one of the most revealing exchanges of the night, she and Mr. Adams had a long conversation about the remarks he made about guns.