2019 Winter Report
Democratic State Committee Member, 76th District
2018 was an exciting year for New Yorkers. Democrats flipped more Congressional seats in New York than they had in any election since 2006, and won their largest majority in the State Senate in decades. In 2019, we are already seeing the positive results of this, with Congressional Democrats standing strong on the government shutdown, and the NYS Legislature passing an incredible amount of progressive legislation.
Nevertheless, there is much more work to be done. New York State’s Democratic Party continues to be ineffective compared to other states, and at times downright controversial. If Democrats are to achieve long-term success in New York, we need a strong and fully functioning Democratic Party.
Big Success in November
After Lauren Trapanotto and I won our State Committee primaries in September 2018, we led weekly canvasses to Brooklyn for Max Rose, who was running for Congress, and Andrew Gounardes, who was running for State Senate. They were up against entrenched Republican incumbents, so every door knocked really mattered. Amazingly, both won, with Gounardes only 1,000 votes ahead. I can’t thank everyone enough who went down to Brooklyn with us.
Fixing the State Democratic Party
While Democrats in New York have had a good few months, the State Democratic Party has not. Just before this past Rosh Hashana, the State Party released an anti-Semitic mailer attacking Gov. Cuomo’s opponent. A few weeks later, the State Party meeting was canceled partway through when State Committee Members demanded answers on how and why the anti-Semitic mailer was sent out. Now, Gov. Cuomo has announced that he has appointed a new State Party Chair, despite the fact that State Party Chair is an elected position.
Lauren and I have been amongst those advocating for a more effectively run State Democratic Party. Along with many other State Committee Members, we signed on to a letter demanding answers about why the last State Party meeting was ended early. However, things may not improve until a new, larger group of reform-minded State Committee Members are elected.
Public Advocate Race
With the election of NYC Public Advocate Tish James as NYS Attorney General, a special election has been called for Tuesday, February 26 to fill the vacancy. Along with the Four Freedoms Democratic Club (of which I’m a long-term member), I’m proud to be supporting Jumaane Williams. He’s unafraid of taking on the power elite, having challenged Gov. Cuomo’s Lieutenant Governor in 2018, receiving the New York Times endorsement, and coming within a few points of defeating the incumbent.
The race is going to come down to the wire, with over 10 candidates. Jumaane can use all the help he can get in both money and time, so please let me know if you are able to help out.
If you ever have any questions about New York Democratic politics, or are looking to become more civically engaged, always feel free to reach out. If we're going to beat Trump and his allies in 2020, we'll need Democrats to be motivated and active.