Turnovers and Challenges: NYC Council Races to Watch

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Voters in forty percent of the city's 51 districts are looking at new names as they pick their council members – thanks mostly to term limits. In some key races for open seats, it's a battle of political power bases. And some incumbents are facing challenges that illustrate demographic shifts in neighborhoods.

In Robert Jackson’s seat in upper Manhattan you have two forces – redistricting and demographic changes – shaping up for a really interesting field. The remade district encompasses Hamilton Heights, Morningside Heights, West Harlem, and more than a dozen really diverse candidates are vying for the seat. Mark Levine is the favorite, with the most money and endorsements. He’s a white Jewish candidate who helped found the Barack Obama Democratic Club in Upper Manhattan, married to a woman born in Puerto Rico. There are also African American candidates, Dominican candidates, and Zead Ramadan, who would be the first Arab American council member.

The Brooklyn council district encompassing Sunset Park, South Slope and Red Hook has a race that mirror the changing populations in the neighborhood. Councilmember Sarah Gonzalez is running for her third term. Her Puerto Rican roots reflect the neighborhood's history, but Sunset Park is increasingly Mexican American. Her challenger, Carlos Menchaca, would be the first Mexican American council representative in the city, and he's running with money and political connections, after his stints working for both Council Speaker Christine Quinn and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz.

Find your district, and its election story, in the map below. 



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Comments [4]

Matthew Swaye from Harlem

i don't know if you're interested, but Christina Gonzalez is going to beat Levine in the 7th district. it's getting around that he lives at 255 cabrini - outside the district - and also that his wife is a billionaire who worked with Lee Bolinger at the NY Federal Reserve. ...Also, Levine-watchers note, there's nothing progressive about paying poor people to hand out misinformation about the conditions under which we live.

Oct. 20 2013 12:07 AM
Senior city liner from Brooklyn

Will the 37th Council Dist. ever get a real candidate to choose from? Someone who works for the community and not their own power/money interests!

Kimberly Council - what is her claim to fame??? She works in a church!? Our district problems go beyond housing. She may mean well...but that doesn't make her qualified.

Rafael Espinal why didn't he stay an (short lived) assemblyman? Because the Dillans didn't want that?!!! Just when I thought maybe he was worth supporting and possibly doing something for the area. Big dissapointment

Heriberto Mateo - an old timer...probably the best least he knows the entire area and has a real picture of the 75th Pct.and the dirty politics in the area...

Helal Sheikh - another ghost candidate.

There is an open seat in District 37 vacated by term limited Councilmember Erik Dillan. It is a competitive primary between housing development corporation vice president Kimberly Council, Dillan's Chief

Sep. 03 2013 12:10 PM
Norman Oder from Brooklyn

Here are two pieces, one from early in the month, and one from today, on the 35th in Brooklyn, especially the role of pro-growth PAC Jobs for NY.

Aug. 28 2013 10:07 AM
Ramon from Melrose

Would be nice to see more attention for the South Bronx, but won't hold my breathe for it.

The 17th especially given how much Arroyo has been in the paper recently and over the years. The Bronx deserves better.

Aug. 28 2013 09:14 AM

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