Elec­tion gives NY New Year’s Eve feel

NYPD will be out 5,000 strong with both can­di­dates in Man­hat­tan

China Daily (USA) - - ACROSS AMERICA - By WIL­LIAM HEN­NELLY in New York williamhen­nelly@ chi­nadai­lyusa.com

It is com­pa­ra­ble to the de­tail size that we have here on New Year’s Eve and last year when Pope Fran­cis vis­ited.” NYPD Chief Car­los Gomez

The po­lice pres­ence in New York City on Elec­tion Day will make it feel like New Year’s Eve, par­tic­u­larly in Times Square.

In a press con­fer­ence in Times Square on Mon­day, New York Po­lice Depart­ment Chief Car­los Gomez said that more than 5,000 uni­formed of­fi­cers will be out on the city’s streets on Tues­day, pa­trolling more than 1,200 polling places.

“This is by far the largest elec­tion de­tail that the NYPD has ever had,” he said. “It is more than dou­ble our pre­vi­ous high. And it is com­pa­ra­ble to the de­tail size that we have here on New Year’s Eve and last year when Pope Fran­cis vis­ited.”

What adds to the amped-up at­mos­phere and se­cu­rity in New York is that both can­di­dates, Demo­crat Hil­lary Clin­ton and Repub­li­can Don­ald Trump, will hold their elec­tion night events in Mid­town Man­hat­tan.

“This presents a very unique set of chal­lenges,” said NYPD Com­mis­sioner James O’Neill. “For the first time in mod­ern mem­ory, both ma­jor party can­di­dates will mon­i­tor the re­sults in New York and hold elec­tion par­ties in Mid­town.”

Clin­ton will be at the Jav­its Cen­ter be­tween 34th and 40th streets on 11th Av­enue. Trump will set up at the New York Hil­ton Mid­town on Sixth Av­enue and West Fifty Third Street. Streets around both venues were ei­ther closed or par­tially closed start­ing Mon­day af­ter­noon.

“We’ve got two things go­ing at once here,” Mayor Bill de Bla­sio said. “The fact that both can­di­dates are in NYC, and then ... that this cam­paign has gen­er­ated par­tic­u­lar con­cern.

“One of the rea­sons we’re here [in Times Square] is that we may see protests in the evening, or cel­e­bra­tions,” the mayor said. “What­ever it may be.”

NYPD Coun­tert­er­ror­ism Chief Jim Wa­ters said the depart­ment has “more than tripled our ca­pac­ity to pro­tect NYC with 535 CRC (Crit­i­cal Re­sponse Com­mand) peo­ple as well as 800 Strate­gic Re­sponse Group per­son­nel — long-gun trained, coun­tert­er­ror­ism-trained and well-pre­pared to face any threat that comes to­ward us or any dan­ger com­ing to NYC.”

The NYPD sit­u­a­tion room and the Joint Op­er­a­tions Cen­ter at One Po­lice Plaza will be staffed with rep­re­sen­ta­tives from more than 50 city, state and fed­eral agen­cies.

“I want to be clear at the out­set — New York City will never be in­tim­i­dated – never by threats of ter­ror, nor by any­one who wants to do any­thing to dis­rupt our elec­toral process,” the mayor said.

WIL­LIAM HEN­NELLY / CHINA DAILY

ABC News has set up a stage in Times Square from where it will broad­cast the re­sults of Tues­day’s US pres­i­den­tial elec­tion.

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