Top Line - NY Dem: Primary Against Gillibrand is Certain

ABC News' David Chalian Reports: 

Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) is not willing (just yet) to take the leap herself, but she is certain that the recently appointed Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) will have a primary fight on her hands next year.

"Oh, I am sure she will face a Democratic primary," Rep. Maloney told us on ABC News' "Top Line" today.  "A number of my colleagues have indicated that they will be announcing soon.  Scott Stringer, a very capable Manhattan Borough President has already announced.  Steve Israel, the blogs say he's announcing today or tomorrow . . . Carolyn McCarthy has said that if no one runs she will definitely run because she's so disturbed about the flip-flopping on gun control, her major signature issue, and there are a number of other people that have thrown their hat in the ring," she said. 

"So, one thing is certain -- there will be a primary," added Rep. Maloney without offering up herself as one of the potential challengers, as is widely expected to be the case.

New York's senior Senator, Chuck Schumer, has made clear that he is backing Sen. Gillibrand in her 2010 campaign and reportedly predicted, perhaps jokingly, there would be no Democratic primary competition. 

The combination of Sen. Gillibrand's moderate views in a primary process dominated by voters in the more liberal New York City area and her appointment from a governor hovering at 19 percent approval makes her an appealing target for some ambitious New York Democrats who had originally hoped they would have been appointed to fill Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's seat in the senate.

Rep. Maloney also made sure to tout her credit card reform legislation that recently passed the House by a wide margin and is set to be up for a vote in the Senate as soon as this week.

"It's so important, not only to stabilize our financial markets and help our financial institutions, but help the people on all the streets of America with fair practices.  The Federal Reserve has called these practices unfair, deceptive, and anti-competitive.  We should've ended them long ago," said Maloney.  "I am thrilled that with the present support momentum is there.  I am sure we will pass it in the Senate and hopefully have it to his desk before the Memorial Day."

And don't miss Talking Points Memo's Matt Cooper and Politico's Anne Schroeder Mullins' takes on the presidential comedy on display at the annual White House Correspondents Association Dinner last Saturday.

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