Elected Officials, Candidates Flock to Political Club’s Fundraiser

Rep. Jerry Nadler talks with DID members. Photos by Victoria Lau.

It was a who’s who of downtown politics at Sean Sweeney’s Soho loft yesterday afternoon. The influential political club, Downtown Independent Democrats, held its annual fundraiser, a chance to share a drink or two, devour some shrimp and chew over the upcoming primary races. Sweeney, who stepped down as president a few weeks ago, gave us a tour of his impressive rooftop garden. The club’s new president, Jeanne Wilcke, told us she had a nice chat with U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney, who’s facing a highly publicized challenge from Reshma Saujani.

Jeanne Wilcke, DID members Yetta Kurland and John Scott, Reshma Saujani.

Politicos debated how much stock to put in a recent poll released by the Maloney camp indicating a commanding lead for the 18-year incumbent.  Saujani, who lives in the East Village, has almost no chance of winning DID’s endorsement. Some members, at least, gave her credit for stopping by. State Senator Daniel Squadron was walking out as we arrived.  In his first election since unseating Marty Connor, Squadron will be facing at least one opponent. Challenger Kevin Coenen, a New York firefighter, was in attendance.  There’s also been talk Debra Feinberg, Vito Lopez’s chief of staff, might get into the race. No sign of her yesterday.

Rep. Carolyn Maloney with DID member Adam Silvera

Also making appearances: U.S. Representatives Jerry Nadler and Anthony Weiner, Public Advocate Bill De Blasio and Councilmember Margaret Chin.