State Assembly candidate Yuh-Line Niou has picked up the key endorsements of two local Democrats. In a press release from her campaign this afternoon, she announced the backing of State Sen. Daniel Squadron and Assemblyman Brian Kavanagh.
Niou is running on the Working Families Party line in the April 19 special election to succeed Sheldon Silver. Alice Cancel won the Democratic nomination in a vote by the local County Committee. She was endorsed by City Council member Rosie Mendez. But most other high-ranking Democrats have either withheld endorsements or backed Niou. Mainstream news stories have played up Cancel’s ties to Silver, who will be sentenced on federal corruption charges later this month.
Squadron represents sections of Brooklyn and Lower Manhattan. His 26th Senate District covers much of the same territory as the 65th Assembly District. “Yuh-Line Niou has the energy, progressive ideals and focus on reform to make a big difference in the district and in Albany,” said Squadron.
Kavanagh represents the 74th Assembly District, just to the north of Silver’s former Lower Manhattam fiefdom. He said, “Yuh-Line will be exactly the kind of legislator we need to join the fight for affordable housing, stronger rent laws and proper maintenance and security in public housing,.. We know that corrupt landlords were at the heart of the scandal that created this vacancy; we need to change the way Albany works and nothing would be more appropriate than electing a truly pro-tenant reformer to fill this seat.”
One local elected official who has not yet endorsed a candidate is City Council member Margaret Chin. Niou’s base of support in Chinatown comes from the United Democratic Organization. That political club’s co-founder, Virginia Kee, and Council member Chin are not the best of friends. Chin is widely expected to back Gigi Li, chairperson of Community Board 3, in the regularly scheduled Democratic primary coming up in September.