Sal Albanese qualifies for mayoral primary debate with de Blasio hosted by NY1

Democrats have been waiting all summer to see if any of Mayor Bill de Blasio's primary opponents would qualify for an official debate sanctioned by the city's campaign finance board. Now, it looks like at least one of those challengers has, meaning NY1 will be hosting a debate in less than two weeks. NY1's Courtney Gross filed the following report.

Mayor Bill de Blasio claimed another so-called progressive victory on Friday. 

"Tenants will have the same opportunity as landlords to defend their interests," he said.

Free lawyers for low-income New Yorkers facing eviction in housing court. 

But the mayor's Democratic primary opponent had his own victory to tout. 

"The debate will elevate my campaign and allow New Yorkers to see there is an alternative to de Blasio," Sal Albanese said.

According to the former city councilman's campaign finance filing, he appears to have raised and spent enough money to qualify for the primary debates.  

To qualify, a candidate must raise and spend more than about $174,000. Albanese has raised and spent beyond that. 

NY1 will host the first Democratic primary debate on August 23. 

Of course, de Blasio is the favorite here. In fact, Albanese has run for mayor several times before, receiving very few votes. 

De Blasio has a massive financial advantage as well, raising 25 times the amount as Albanese. 

But there are some issues that continue to dog the mayor.

During a radio appearance on Friday, the mayor once again promised to release an op-ed about donors asking for favors from the city. 

The mayor originally promised to release a list of donors in May of 2016. He then switched to an op-ed earlier this year. 

Nothing has been released so far, prompting his Republican opponent to start a clock counting the number of days since his original promise. 

"I commit to publishing the op-ed, and I have to find the time to do it, and I'll try to do it as soon as possible," de Blasio said.

So far, the campaign isn't changing the mayor's schedule too much. From here, he was scheduled to jet off to a conference in New Orleans. He was scheduled to return to New York on Saturday. 

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