City Limits reporter David Brand speaks with Politico New York’s City Hall Bureau Chief Sally Goldenberg about the ins and outs of the race to lead the incoming City Council.

Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office

The staircase at City Hall.

Behind the scenes drama. Backroom deals. Local power brokers wielding influence while trying to save face. Is this a race for City Council Speaker or the season three story arc of Succession?

The ongoing negotiations to choose a new leader of the legislative body have never been more unpredictable, but one thing seems clear: two candidates have emerged as the current frontrunners.

Queens Councilmember Francisco Moya has the backing of Mayor-elect Eric Adams (who is reportedly working the phones on his behalf), Rep. Adriano Espaillat and a group of lawmakers who want to ensure there’s a Latino in power.

Another Queens Councilmember, Adrienne Adams, has the support of a group of labor unions engaged in an anyone-but-Moya campaign, as well as Council peers who want to see a woman in the crucial role.

Politico New York’s City Hall Bureau Chief Sally Goldenberg joined WBAI’s City Watch on Sunday morning to open a window into the struggle for the powerful position, which sets the legislative agenda, brings bills to a vote and theoretically acts as a check on the mayor.

The new class of 51 councilmembers will formally elect the next speaker at a meeting in early 2022, but the race is still far from over.

Who will win? Stay tuned.

The episode also featured a conversation with Lawrence Cann, founder of the nonprofit Street Soccer USA. Cann’s organization runs soccer clubs, training sessions and after-school programs for low-income adults and children, with a special focus on New Yorkers experiencing homelessness.

City Watch airs live on WBAI 99.5 FM and wbai.org every Sunday morning from 10 to 11 a.m.

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