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Harlem Democrat Melissa Mark-Viverito Likely Next City Council Speaker

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Melissa Mark-Viverito at City Hall on August 17, 2011. Melissa Mark-Viverito at City Hall on August 17, 2011. (Mirela Iverac/WNYC)

City councilwoman Melissa Mark-Viverito says she has the support to become the next city Council Speaker.

In a statement yesterday Mark-Viverito announced she has the backing of about 30 of her fellow council members. Her election as speaker isn't 100 percent assured though, she still faces a vote by the City Council before she can take office on January 8.

"She is viewed as one of the most liberal, most progressive members on the council," said Erin Durkin, city hall reporter for the New York Daily News. "Some of the things that she's probably going to want to push are similar to what's on Bill de Blasio's agenda."

Mark-Viverito represents District 8 on the city council which includes East Harlem, Manhattan Valley and Mott Haven. She was first elected to the city council in 2005 and was the first Puerto Rican woman and Latina elected to serve as Council Member for the 8th district. Mark-Viverito was born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Before she was elected to the city council Mark-Viverito worked as an organizer for 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Worker’s union and was director of the Hispanic Education and Legal Fund.

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