Local NYCHA Leader Claims She Was Misled Into Appearing in Pro-Trump Video, Report Says


Quiñones (in purple) speaking with Patton (with glasses pushed up) last year.

Carmen Quiñones, a leader at the Douglass Houses on the Upper West Side, told the New York Times that she appeared in a video without knowing it would be featured at the Republican National Convention on Thursday. The video represents another example of a Trump official mixing political work with government duties, the Times reported.

She was one of four tenants shown on the video, which promoted President Trump and criticized Mayor de Blasio. Three told the Times they didn’t know the context of the video.

Quiñones met with Trump about NYCHA in 2019, and she’s been critical of de Blasio’s oversight of NYCHA, given repair backlogs and other problems in public housing. She’s also helped deliver thousands of meals to NYCHA residents during the Covid crisis. Quiñones is listed on Wikipedia as a potential City Council candidate next year as a Democrat.

The Times said Quiñones had gathered other NYCHA leaders for the video at the request of Lynne Patton, who oversees federal housing in New York for the Trump administration. But she didn’t know what the video would be used for, the Times said.

Ms. Quiñones said she wished that she had been told in advance that the clip would be shown at the convention. She said she was a lifelong Democrat who plans to vote for Joseph R. Biden Jr. in November. She was interviewed on Friday as she marched in Washington at the Get Your Knee Off Our Necks rally, sponsored by another Trump target, the Rev. Al Sharpton.

When asked whether she was concerned about being misled, Ms. Quiñones said, “It is what it is.”

Patton, however, says the tenants knew what they were getting into, and that the video was completely proper.

Ms. Patton declined to be interviewed, saying that she was traveling. But she issued a statement denying that she misled the four tenants, saying that they knew that their interviews would be shown at the convention “to increase awareness of the inhumane conditions that Mayor de Blasio has allowed for far too long.”

“Each participated regardless of political party because they recognized the importance of having a voice on the national stage and the undeniable improvements that have transpired under this administration,” Ms. Patton said.

NEWS | 22 comments | permalink
    1. Jonathan Lund says:

      I don’t believe her for one second. These people were absolutely misled. This has Trump written all over it.

    2. Janet Wasserman says:

      TO Ms. Carmen Quiñones:

      If you are running for City Council, LEARN TO ASK QUESTIONS! How dense can you be not to ask a TRUMP rep anything? You were used – but it’s your own fault. You will not get MY vote.

      • George CPW says:

        You nailed it. Lie down with dogs and you wake up with fleas.

      • Sarah says:

        Thing is, Patton is a HUD OFFICIAL, not a Trump campaign employee. Someone paid by you and me, who is supposed to be looking out for all people. NOT A “TRUMP REP.” Those functions are legally not supposed to be performed by the same people for this (and several other good) reason.

        I’m not sure that someone so ignorant of basic civics like this ought to be criticizing others’ sophistication.

    3. AC says:

      Ms. Quiñones shouldn’t back down to pressure from her fellow democrats. If she feels this way about our Mayor and believes the President has been helpful to her cause, than so be it. She has a right to say what she wants. As she states herself, “It is what it is.”

    4. Battleridge says:

      These residents were dealing with Lynne Patton, Eric Trump’s event planner turned VP of his shady charity turned HUD official. All of the Trumps and their sycophants do is lie. In one form or another.

    5. Elizabeth Kellner says:

      Ms. Quinones had prior dealings with Patton and the Trump administration. She has run for elected party office as a Democratic District Leader, Judicial Delegate and County Committee member and she has organized slates to run with her in local primaries. She has been a paid campaign worker. She is in regular contact with numerous local elected officials. She is savvy, experienced and accustomed to seeking and getting media attention.

    6. A good politician plays all sides as necessary to pass policy. It’s the RNC’s bad.

    7. UWS Lady says:

      So let me get this straight. You complained about situations as a tenant at NYCHA but now are upset that the “wrong” party (read Republican) is trying to help you. You sound conflicted. I guess your back peddling is due to your realizing that NYC’s one party government is now going to cancel you and still you say that you are going to vote for Biden, the party that is NOT helping you.

      • nycityny says:

        If you really think the purpose of this whole charade was to help these tenants then I’ve got a bridge to sell you a few miles south of here…

    8. Barbara Winn says:

      Huge black mark for Ms. Patton, who clearly puts party over people. She’s a disgrace to American government, just like her boss and most of the Republicans in Congress. Why wasn’t SHE marching in Washington?

    9. blacklikeu says:

      Politics sucks.
      Get used to it.
      You lost my vote.

    10. nemo paradise says:

      Dosn’t change a thing she said in the video. What’s the problem?

    11. J says:

      they totally knew….they spoke truth.

    12. L Greene says:

      There are very real problems with the NYCHA living conditions and HUD and the federal government has done little to work on correcting these conditions. What did Patton say the federal government did to help correct these problems? This was just a way of attacking a Democratic administration. Ms. Quinones should have been suspect.

    13. robert says:

      If you actually read the Times article you will see so many misstatements, where they first said it was x then y. “Only after the questioning ended were the four tenants told that the interview was for the Republican Party” or was it “But Ms. Quiñones said she did not realize until the cameras started and the questions began that Ms. Patton had actually recruited the tenants for interviews for the party.”
      If you know what was going on while you or one of the others was being interviewed and it bothered, you why did you go on with it?

    14. robert says:

      Part II
      The parts used were to highlight the deplorable condition of Douglas, both physically and the large spike in crime. Pls show me the part where any of them said Trump is better than Biden?
      Whenever someone is interviewed, they sign a legal release to use their footage. I would as these four to produce their copy. Odds are it is boiler plate that the footage could be used as the people shooting it felt, and if they didn’t understand it why did they sign the release and agree to be filmed?

    15. robert says:

      Part III
      The UWS has long been know in political circles as “the people republic of the UWS” The same group of people progressives come around each election and promise if their just reelected things will get better. They are not That fact that these residents felt the need to speak out against de Blasio says volumes, about what is really going on.

    16. robert says:

      Part IV Last one so I can get the entire comment in under the 100 rule
      And before anybody says its Trumps fault or the republicans stopped more NYCHA aid. I would remind you that Obama had super majorities in both the House and Senate. He could have passed anything he wanted for NYCHA, the largest public housing unit in the country. Perhaps you should have asked the Dean of the NY delegation Rangel that before rubber stamping his return. He is gone now but Nadler was around then and still is. Why not push him to answer on that?

    17. Boris says:

      Clever use of false outrage.

      Seems like she’s trying to get ahead of any potential controversy when she runs next year for City Council and her opponents put her on the defensive for pro-Trump remarks.

    18. cc says:

      It’s amazing how New Yorkers keep on dumping on Trump but then call on him to have the federal government fork over funds for the MTA and to fill the city budget. That’s not the way it works folks.

    19. ARFNYC says:

      Of course Carmen is trying to act like the victim, because she still wants to run for City Council! But this is what she’s really all about, as found in the Daily News from her meeting with Trump in 2019: “During her Washington trip, Quinones was treated to something different: a four-star hotel stay and a White House reception where she sipped champagne and calmed her nerves. She met with Trump and First Lady Melania Trump after a White House celebration of Black History Month.” She’s a celebrity wannabe!