A competitive primary election slated for Thursday, Sept. 13 will be the second New York Democratic primary this year to determine mid-term elected officials and perhaps the current fate of the two political parties and their bid to win the White House in 2020.
Particularly contentious is the fight for the state house, which pits incumbent New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo against first-time political aspirant Cynthia Nixon.
Both are favored for different perspectives on improving conditions in the state; the voters will have to choose who will represent the party in November when they decide which party will govern.
Gov. Cuomo has been leading the charge to blame much of the city’s and state’s woes on the President of the United States, who he claims may be delusional in believing he could “Make America Great.”
“We are not going to make America great again,” Cuomo said in a recent speech. “It was never that great. We have not reached greatness. We will reach greatness when every American is duly engaged.”
President Donald Trump countered by saying: “Can you believe this is the Governor of the highest-taxed state in the U.S., Andrew Cuomo, having a total meltdown!”
After a flurry of backlash on social media, Gov. Cuomo said he was “inartful” in diminishing the might of the nation, and has since focused on condemning the President’s ineffectiveness.
Nixon, a celebrated actress who enjoyed national and international acclaim portraying a feminist character on the television series “Sex in The City,” seized the opportunity to remind potential voters that both elected officials enjoyed friendly alliance and are more similar than different.
Last week when President Trump suffered probably his most severe political setback when two of his closest allies were convicted of criminal infractions, Nixon dared her rival Democratic opponent by holding a news conference outside Trump Tower in midtown Manhattan, demanding that Cuomo give back $64,000 in campaign donations he received from Trump during Cuomo’s 2002 unsuccessful campaign for governor and for his run for attorney general in 2006.
It was just after a jury convicted Trump’s former campaign chair Paul Manafort of tax and bank fraud and Michael Cohen, his longtime personal lawyer, pleaded guilty to felony violations of campaign finance laws and other charges in separate trials of misconduct.
The self-described Progressive candidate described the governor as being hypocritical.
“Cuomo didn’t have an excuse before for keeping Trump’s money,” Nixon said. “But he definitely doesn’t have any excuse now.”
Her recent call is not new; she challenged the state’s leader before, and last month, Cuomo said that he did not intend to return the money. He recently added that campaign donations have never decided his decisions. He said he has never been swayed by the views of any donor. “If you are a person who is influenced by donors, you shouldn’t be in this business,” Cuomo said.
Catch You On The inside!
“Maybe Andrew Cuomo is just hoping that if he keeps attacking Donald Trump that voters won’t notice how much the two electeds have in common,” said Nixon, who pointed out that this year both officials have had their top aides repudiated for abusing the law. Cuomo’s confidant Joe Percoco was convicted of bribery and other charges.
Meanwhile the hotly contested seat seems to be the focus of a barrage of television and radio commercials.
A few have targeted the lieutenants of each hopeful.
Incumbent Kathy Hochul seems to be getting new-found visibility as the current partner to the governor. Ads describing her as being “an experienced leader fighting against Trump” and promoting her reelection, have placed her in the spotlight.
Brooklyn City Councilmember Jumaane Williams is Nixon’s Progressive teammate.
The 42-year-old son of immigrants Pat and Greg Williams of St. Andrew’s, Grenada, who describes himself as a democratic socialist, is being called out for his stance on same sex marriage but seems to have the support of the 45th Council District, whose support he handily retained in 2013 after beating an incumbent Councilman Kendall Stewart in the 2009 primary elections.
Probably yielding to controversy from the main race or maybe adapting a policy promised in 1988 when George H. W. Bush accepted his party’s nomination by advocating for a “kinder and gentler” path to understanding, four candidates have remained under the radar during their campaigns to become the next state attorney general.
Sean Patrick Maloney, Letitia James, Zephyr Teachout and Leecia Eve are the contenders.
Bullets and a march to stop the violence gave pause to a campaign being waged by State Senator Jesse Hamilton recently. Unscathed by the shattering missiles pelted at his Crown Heights office, he is being challenged by Zelnor Myrie in Brooklyn’s 20th Senatorial District.
Assemblyman Charles Barron will face off with Jaytee Spurgeon in the 60th.
Former mayoral candidate John Liu is in a race with Tony Avella to secure the 11th Senatorial District in Queens.
And for male district leadership in the 35th in Queens, it will be Hiram Monseratte versus George Dixon. There are several contests for judicial, county committee and seats for delegates to conventions up for grab. Decision day, Sept. 13, is a Thursday.