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Campaign for the 65th Assembly District: Endorsement Roundup

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(Left to right) Alice Cancel, Yuh Line Niou, Lester Chang.
(Left to right) Alice Cancel, Yuh-Line Niou, Lester Chang.

Here’s the latest in the battle to replace Sheldon Silver in the 65th Assembly District. In a special election on April 19, downtown voters will choose among three candidates: Alice Cancel (Democrat), Lester Chang (Republican) and Yuh-Line Niou (a Democrat running on the Working Families Party line).

Niou’s campaign announced yesterday that she has picked up the endorsement of the New York State United Teachers (NYSUT) and the United Federation of Teachers (UFT). In a press release, UFT President Michael Mulgrew said, Niou “knows how to stand up for working families and get things done. Downtown schools need a leader who can deliver from Day 1 and that’s Yuh-Line Niou.”

Niou, a resident of the Financial District, is chief of staff to Assembly member Ron Kim. Last week, she was backed by Nick Perry, chairman of the Assembly’s Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic and Asian Legislative Caucus. Niou also received the endorsement of Ritchie Torres, co-chair of the City Council’s Black, Latino and Asian Caucus.

Meanwhile, Alice Cancel has been endorsed by Margarita Lopez, the former Lower East Side City Council member and NYCHA official. She will also be serving as the Democratic nominee’s field coordinator.

Cancel has taken a beating in the mainstream press for ties to Sheldon Silver, who was forced from office after being convicted of federal corruption charges. The backing of Silver’s political organization, the Truman Democratic Club, was crucial in Cancel’s election by local Democratic committee members last month. But she also enjoys the support of tenant leaders in many of the Lower East Side’s low-income housing developments. Lopez is a veteran campaign operative who will seek to mobilize the neighborhood’s Latino communities on Cancel’s behalf. Cancel had already been endorsed by Rosie Mendez, Lopez’s successor in the City Council.

Finally, Dennis Levy of the Green Party says he’s running for the Assembly seat. He’s president of the New York State Committee to Legalize Marijuana. You can read more about him here.

The winner of the special election will serve the remainder of Silver’s term. A wider field of candidates will be competing this coming summer in what’s sure to be a hotly contested Democratic Primary.

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  1. Perhaps the candidates would care to publish something of substance that could be used to help make a decision. These statements of support are not much use.

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