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June 17, 2008

After Michael Ratner's support for Kucinich, blowback?

Atlantic Yards Report

Norman Oder speculates how Michael Ratner, who is Bruce Ratner's brother and human rights advocate, might be experiencing some unintended consequences as a result of political contributions.

Michael Ratner tends to back Brooklyn politicians to gain their support for Atlantic Yards. Outside of Brooklyn, he seems to back candidates based on their ideology, such as Rep. Dennis Kucinich. Lately, this seems to have produced a kind of conflict as Kucinich is working against Atlantic Yards in trying to close an IRS loophole that Bruce Ratner had hoped to use in order to help finance the project.

Michael Ratner has a record of supporting progressives in New York City and elsewhere, just as he has a curious record of supporting undistinguished products of the Brooklyn machine (who also support Atlantic Yards), as I wrote in September 2006.

While Ratner's not talking, his Brooklyn political contributions seem guided not by ideology but by the interests of Forest City Ratner (FCR). Indeed, as federal filings show, while he generally lists his employer as the Center for Constitutional Rights, some list his affiliation as First New York Partners, a separate operating entity of Forest City responsible for providing property management and services to all Forest City buildings and their tenants. In other cases, he lists his address not as his Greenwich Village home, but 1 MetroTech, FCR's headquarters in Brooklyn.

Will he ask Kucinich for his money back?


Posted by steve at June 17, 2008 5:30 AM