What's more powerful: Political promises or family ties? In the Gotbaum family, it seems political promises win, because former Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum is throwing her support behind Public Advocate candidate State Senator Daniel Squadron—and not her stepson Noah, who is also running for the job. The NY Times reports, "Ms. Gotbaum said that her decision, which was to be announced on Thursday, was not personal and that she and her stepson had "a close relationship.'"

The Times explains, "Ms. Gotbaum said Mr. Squadron, the son of longtime friends, approached her a year ago — long before anyone else. And she said he had laid out an impressive vision for the job, including a focus on constituent services, as well as a desire to link a disparate web of people and organizations to solve problems. 'I committed to Daniel early on because I think he’d be a very, very good public advocate,' she said. 'I’m not going to go back on my word.'" Sources also tell the Times that Ms. Gotbaum felt "boxed in" because she didn't realize her stepson would be running for public advocate when she endorsed Squadron.

Squadron, a crusading Brooklyn politician who has the Beastie Boys fan vote LOCKED DOWN, has raised $800,000 for his run, while Noah Gotbaum has raised $100,000 so far. Noah Gotbaum, an Upper West Sider, has worked in the private and public sector, most recently gaining a voice in fighting for public schools but he has more recognition for being the husband of Carol Gotbaum, who died while on her way to a rehab center in Tucson, Arizona

Carol Gotbaum, who was an alcoholic and "emotionally volatile," became agitated after missing her connection at Phoenix's Sky Airport. She was taken into police custody, where she died after somehow strangling herself with her handcuffs. The Gotbaums believed she was manhandled and then abandoned in her cell by police and filed a notice of claim against Phoenix. The city's response to the notice of claim basically blamed Noah Gotbaum, pointing out (PDF) that his wife should not have been traveling alone:

It is undisputed that at the time of her arrest Carol was not self-destructive. Angry because she missed her flight? Obviously. Intoxicated at a 0.24% BAC? Probably. But the only ones who knew that Carol was depressed, suicidal, and alcohol-abusive were members of her own family. This incontrovertible fact comes to us, not from lawyers, advocates, or hired public relations specialists, but from the mouth of her husband, Noah Gotbaum, who is now accusing the officers for doing exactly what he knew they would do without the missing information.

One is left to wonder why... Noah allowed Carol to fly, alone and unescorted, on a one-way trip to an addiction treatment clinic in Tucson. The Gotbaum family knew that Carol was hiding her condition from the public, that she “was ashamed of her problems and put on a mask for the world.” ... Noah has admitted that Carol was in deep depression and should not be alone. [Lawyer] Michael [Manning], I believe even you are quoted as saying that, “You don’t leave someone that you know is sick.” Well, who left Carol alone knowing she was sick? Noah did. And he now criticizes the police officers for dealing with a situation that he, as her husband, could have prevented.

Noah Gotbaum eventually settled the case for $250,000.