Pol Position: Brooklyn Dems asleep at the wheel

Last Tuesday night was supposed to be a red wave. But the only place it actually showed up was in Brooklyn – the county with the highest amount of democratic voters – of all places.

And it’s the party’s own fault.

At the time of publication, Peter Abbate Jr., who reps parts of Bensonhurst is trailing by 151 votes and Coney Island Assemblymember Mathlyde Frontus is trailing by 797 votes. Sheepshead Bay Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz lost handily by over 4,000 votes and State Senate Candidate Iwen Chu has a narrow lead of around 200 votes against her Republican opponent.

As New York State Focus reported, the county party did practically zilch in terms of Get Out the Vote Operations or phonebanks.

“There was no one to talk to. The executive director was gone; the county leader was having a baby,” Abbate told New York Focus. “I kept telling them they had to watch out.”

Maybe fewer galas and a little more canvassing? Or phonebanks that don’t start a week before the election? Or anything that actually resembles an actual party apparatus?

It seems like the party made more concerted efforts to stymie the reformers within the party than they did to actually win the general election. 

The party really needs to get its affairs in order if they don’t want a repeat of Republicans gaining in Southern Brooklyn in the upcoming spring City Council elections as the area has been swinging more conservative in recent years. 

In Our Opinion: Replace Jay Jacobs

In one of the traditionally bluest states in the nation, the Democratic Party is in shambles. 

New York elected its first woman governor, but only with a measly seven-point lead. Republicans are on track to pick up three seats in Brooklyn. And congressional Republicans have picked up four seats statewide, including Hudson Valley’s Sean Patrick Maloney, who was in charge of Democrat’s national operation to elect congressional representatives.

Across the country, Democrats had a historic night, fending off challengers in a midterm election amid high inflation and an unpopular president. Pundits predicted a red wave but Democrats have held onto the Senate, while the balance of the House of Representatives remains to be seen — even if they take control, it will be by slim margins.

But Democrats across the Empire State are calling on Jay Jacobs, the Cuomo appointed head of the party, to resign. We concur. 

Several hundred electeds, politicos and organizations signed onto a letter shared with BQE Media calling on the chairman to resign following last week’s election results.

“The New York State Democratic Party is better than this. We, the undersigned, are ready to work with Governor Hochul to elect a real party leader who embodies actual democratic values and is – as our party website clearly states – ‘committed to building a party that ensures New Yorkers have progressive, fair, and dedicated leaders at every level of government,” the letter reads. 

Despite having powerful clout across the state, the party has misstepped – like Cuomo’s reported support of the Independent Democratic Conference,  a consortium of conservative Democrats who worked with State Senate Republicans over New York City Democrats.

Fighting within your own party, or actively blocking wings of your party, is not going to create a solid governing coalition. And the party brass that has been running the Dem’s operation for the last few years have been doing just that. It’s time for them to clear house if they want to sustain wins in the future and not elect a Republican governor the next cycle around.

Fill the Form for Events, Advertisement or Business Listing