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John Liu ready for runoff

Stephon Johnson | 4/12/2011, 4:37 p.m.

With the San Gennaro Festival going on just a few blocks away, where Little Italy crashes into Chinatown, the Grand Harmony estaurant held a celebration of its own on election night in honor of Councilman John C. Liu's pursuit of the comptroller seat.

With 100 percent of the vote counted, Liu collected 38 percent, which is short of the 40 percent needed to win the seat completely. David Yassky of Thompson. "I'm ready to take on Mike Bloomberg. It's time for a change, New York. I'm running for mayor because in these tough times, we need a leader who's on our side. " Thompson added that the city could do better than Bloomberg, who he said has one set of rules for himself and another for everyone else.

Thompson also highlighted how Bloomberg going on just a few blocks away, where Little Italy crashes into Chinatown, the Grand Harmony restaurant held a celebration of its own on election night in honor of Councilman John C. Liu's pursuit of the comptroller seat. With 100 percent of the vote counted, Liu collected 38 percent, which is short of the 40 percent needed to win the seat completely. David Yassky of Brooklyn finished second, with 30 percent of the vote. Queens Councilman David Weprin took home 20 percent of the vote. There will be a runoff in two weeks to decide the fate of all three candidates.

Accompanied by his wife, Jenny, and his son Joey, Liu walked into the Grand Harmony restaurant with the confidence of a man who feels victory is near. Joined onstage by public officials like State Sen. Bill Perkins, State Assemblymen Michael Benjamin and Hakim Jeffries and members of SEIU 1199, DC 37 and the United Firefighters Association, Liu spoke, with a hoarse voice, of his overall goal for the citizens of New York.

"I want to make sure that everybody has the opportunity to pursue the American dream as I and our family have done, " said Liu. "I will be [right back] out there on the streets, on the subways, everywhere, talking to people about the issues that matter most to them and my vision of the future of New York City. "When asked about his opponent David Yassky, Liu said, "I think the voters will clearly see a contrast in the next couple of weeks. In twoweeks, we'll go back to the voters. There's only one position available and may the best person win.

"At the end of the day, the people decide who the best person is, "said Liu. The councilman did congratulate Yassky for running what he called "a great campaign"and told those in attendance that his voice will be back tomorrow. Liu didn't need to speak much because other officials did the work for him. Sen. Perkins led the crowd in call-and-response chants like "John Who?! John Liu!" and "John Liu in two!"making sure the crowd kept up the energy that swept all four corners of Grand Harmony.

Jim Gennaro said that Liu no longer belonged to his district in Queens, he "belongs to the city now!"While the son of Taiwanese immigrants might belong to the city now, Liu understands that he needs to win more of the city's citizens. "We made a tremendous showing, "said Liu. "And we've been out there on the streets, on the phones, on e-mail, on Twitter and on Facebook. We've done a great deal over the last few months. And now I gotta ask you for two more weeks. " "There's this last leg to finish, "Liu said. "Come with me on this wild journey. We're not gonna let up in any way. We're ready for anything that comes our way. "

While McFadden & Whitehead's "Ain't No Stoppin' Us Now" blaring through the speakers, the Liu camp seemed poised and ready to go full-speed ahead. "Are you ready for this?!"screamed Liu. Judging by the crowd's enthusiasm and love, they're definitely up to the challenge.