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Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

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Jumaane D. Williams

Jumaane D. Williams

  • hochul in brooklyn w lawmakers

    Lt. Gov. Hochul, center, in Brooklyn (photo: @KathyHochul)


    Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, in campaign mode, has appeared in the Bronx and Brooklyn several times over the past few weeks. The Democratic lieutenant governor, facing a challenge from Brooklyn City Council Member Jumaane Williams as she seeks a second term, has been spending more time in New York City as primary day gets closer.

    Hochul’s focus on the city, and its communities of color in particular, are indicative of the importance of voters from the five boroughs,

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  • Cuomo check

    Gov. Cuomo at a funding event (photo: The Governor's Office)


    With less than two months till the September 13 primary election, candidates running for state office filed campaign financial disclosure reports with the New York State Board of Elections by the Monday deadline, showing fundraising and expenditures from a six-month period between January 16 and July 16.

    Governor Andrew Cuomo, the two-term incumbent Democrat who is running for reelection, continues to maintain an overwhelming funding advantage with more than $31 million in his campaign coffers. Cuomo

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  • cuomo hochul bus stop

    Gov. Cuomo and Lt. Gov. Hochul (photo: The Governor's Office)


    Governor Andrew Cuomo and Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul have increased the frequency of their public appearances together in recent months, perhaps a reaction to the Democratic primary challenge against Hochul by City Council Member Jumaane Williams, not to mention Cynthia Nixon’s parallel attempt to unseat Cuomo.

    Between the close of state budget season at the end of March and mid-July, Cuomo and Hochul appeared together at 17 separate public government events, eight more than their nine

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  • corey johnson jessica ramos robert jackson cityhall

    Corey Johnson endorses IDC challengers (photo: Gotham Gazette)


    As progressives aggressively attempt to wrest control of the Democratic Party from the hands of those they call centrists and establishment politicians, elected Democrats across New York find themselves in an unenviable position. Abiding by their self-professed progressive values to support insurgent Democratic primary challengers could mean bucking the state party establishment and its leader, Governor Andrew Cuomo, while, on the

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  • Kathy Hochul

    Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul (photo: Governor's Office)


    One of the country’s most powerful political organizations, EMILY’s List, has endorsed Kathy Hochul for reelection as lieutenant governor of New York.

    Hochul, a Democrat seeking a second term in the statewide position, is facing a primary challenge from New York City Council Member Jumaane Williams, with the vote just over two months away, on September 13.

    EMILY’s List is a national organization founded in 1985 to “elect pro-choice Democratic women to office” that helps recruit, train, and support female

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  • jum williams stop

    Jumaane Williams, co-author, center (photo: @JumaaneWilliams)


    Throughout June, we observed Gun Violence Awareness Month. In the year since we last marked this occasion, 33,000 people lost their lives to gun violence in this country. A mass shooting of four or more casualties occurred nearly every day of that year, and just last week, five people were killed and two injured as a shooter opened fire on an Annapolis newsroom. Over the course of the month about 3,000 people were killed. Over 200 were children.

    The statistics are staggering, but at the

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  • cuomo hochul bus stop

    Gov. Cuomo and Lt. Gov. Hochul (photo: Governor's Office)


    With the September primaries for New York state elections fast approaching, Governor Andrew Cuomo and Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, both Democratic incumbents, are being forced to defend their records in challenges from the left. While many other elected officials and labor unions are supporting the incumbents, a wide swath of activists that form part of the party’s base is supporting challengers to Cuomo, Hochul, and a group of state senators who, until recently, made up the rogue Democratic faction

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  • mxm logo

    Ben Max, left, of Gotham Gazette, and Jarrett Murphy, right, of City Limits


    June 14, 2018 - Max & Murphy Podcast: Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul

    kathy hochul 277

    Kathy Hochul is in the fourth year of her first term as lieutenant governor, and, running alongside Governor Andrew Cuomo, seeking another term this fall. She's facing a primary challenge, however, from City Council Member Jumaane

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  • New York convention Cuomo

    New York Democrats at the 2016 DNC (photo: New York Democratic Party)


    This year’s statewide election campaigns are in full swing, with the Democrats and Republicans hosting their nominating conventions this week. While Republicans are set to back a unified slate of candidates to avoid contested primaries, the Democratic Party finds itself in a degree of turmoil with multiple incumbents facing primary challenges from the left and a progressive base increasingly disillusioned with the state party machinery.

    As the September primary and

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  • Cynthia Nixon WFP nomination

    Cynthia Nixon at the WFP convention (photo: Make The Road Action)


    It’s political party convention season as this state and federal election year heats up in New York, with federal primaries on June 26, state primaries September 13, and the general election November 6.

    Over the weekend, the Working Families Party and Green Party held their nominating conventions on Saturday and the Reform Party held its on Sunday. This week the Democratic and Republican state parties will hold their conventions, nominating candidates for the

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  • mayornyc james o neil

    (Credit: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    The New York City Council Progressive Caucus is stepping up calls for Mayor Bill de Blasio to reconstitute a citywide task force to examine how emergency responders help people suffering from mental illness, and are insisting that the mayor consider creating a parallel response force of social workers and therapists that can answer calls rather than police officers.

    In a letter sent to the mayor last Wednesday, the 21 members of the Progressive Caucus said the mayor should act by the end of

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  • de Blasio NYPD

    Mayor de Blasio & top NYPD officials (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    In August of last year, shortly after NYPD officers shot to death an emotionally disturbed man in his apartment, City Council Member Jumaane Williams led an effort calling on Mayor Bill de Blasio to set up a task force to conduct a wholesale review of the police department’s protocols in dealing with “emotionally disturbed persons,” or EDPs. Almost eight months later, with many in the city again reeling from the fatal shooting of an emotionally disturbed man at the

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  • Kathy Hochul

    Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul (photo: The Governor's Office)


    “That’s what we do in New York -- that’s what we need in our nation!” declared Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul from a church lectern Sunday, sounding not unlike her boss, Governor Andrew Cuomo.

    Hochul, whose remarks were at times drowned out by applause, was highlighting Cuomo’s progressive accomplishments -- paid family leave, equal pay provisions, and criminal justice reform -- before a congregation of elected officials, aides, and others attending the New York State Association of

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  • mxm logo

    Ben Max, left, of Gotham Gazette, and Jarrett Murphy, right, of City Limits


    February 22, 2018 - Max & Murphy Podcast: Lieutenant Governor Candidate Jumaane Williams

    jumanne williams pod 277

    City Council Member Jumaane Williams recently announced his candidacy for Lieutenant Governor, opening a Democratic primary challenge to incumbent Kathy Hochul, Governor Andrew Cuomo's chosen

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  • Ydanis NYPD

    City Council Member Rodriguez (photo: William Alatriste)


    The City Council Committee on Public Safety held an oversight hearing on Wednesday to examine the NYPD’s tactics and procedures regarding protests and crowd control. The perpetually controversial issue has come to the fore once again in the wake of immigrant activist Ravi Ragbir’s detention by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the NYPD’s subsequent aggressive handling of protesters, culminating in the arrests of two City Council members and 16 others on January 11.

    Both Council

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  • Jumaane Williams city council

    City Council Member Jumaane Williams (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    At the end of stirring and emotional remarks on Martin Luther King Day, City Council Member Jumaane Williams announced that he is exploring a run for Lieutenant Governor. Williams, who was just re-elected to a third Council term and was unsuccessful in his pursuit of the speakership of the city’s legislative body, gave the keynote address at Salem Missionary Baptist Church in Brooklyn on Monday, passionately discussing the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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  • Speaker Corey Johnson

    Speaker Corey Johnson (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    Corey Johnson’s ascension to speaker of the New York City Council came amid concerns by elected officials and activists that yet another white man would be in a seat of leadership in a majority-minority city where the mayor and comptroller, two of three citywide elected officials, are also white men. During his pursuit of the position against several men of color and amid citywide outcry over the gender imbalance in the City Council, Johnson promised to ensure a diverse senior leadership

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  • de Blasio Bratton O'Neill NYPD

    James O'Neill, Bill Bratton, Bill de Blasio (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio and the New York Police Department have much cause for celebration. Last year was undoubtedly the safest year on record in decades, setting new benchmarks for crime reduction across most major categories, according to the latest crime data released by the NYPD on Friday.

    The total number of major felony crimes fell below 100,000 for the first time ever, no small feat for a city now home to more than 8.5 million residents.

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  • vacant bldg via hpd

    (photo via @NYCHousing)


    Two years ago, Public Advocate Letitia James and City Council Members Jumaane Williams and Ydanis Rodriguez each introduced a bill under a set called the Housing Not Warehousing Act, a package aimed at reducing homelessness and increasing the city’s affordable housing stock. The bills seek to mandate an annual tally of the number of vacant lots and buildings in the city, determining which of those under city jurisdiction could be developed for affordable housing, while also requiring landlords with vacant properties to

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  • City Council chambers with members

    photo by William Alatriste/City Council


    The New York City Board of Elections has widely been acknowledged as a dysfunctional agency in need of urgent and sweeping reform, yet the political will for modernizing and professionalizing the board has not existed, at least in part because its current structure benefits those in power.

    Its system of appointments based on political patronage has long been a source of criticism and its mismanagement of election operations has frustrated voters and been the subject of City

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  • City Council speaker candidates

    The City Council speaker candidates (photo: William Alatriste)


    At the last public forum in the race to become the next speaker of the City Council, seven of the eight men contending for the Council’s top leadership spot took turns making their argument for why they would be the right person to continue Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito’s legacy of protecting and promoting the cause of women, transgender, and gender non-conforming New Yorkers. Though few new ideas emerged, for nearly two hours, the seven Council members pitched their progressive

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  • city council speaker

    City Council Speaker candidates (photo: William Alatriste)


    The eight men running to become the next speaker of the City Council are all Democrats who were re-elected in November to serve a final term in the body. None of them faced a strong challenger in their respective races, either in the primaries, which are largely determinative of overall results, or in the November 7 general election. Nevertheless, a few of the candidates raised significant campaign cash and spent it just as liberally as if they were running competitive races. As Gotham Gazette has

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  • johnson moya crowley c2

    Corey Johnson, Francisco Moya, Joe Crowley (photo via @CoreyinNYC)


    The eight City Council members, all Democrats, who are competing to lead the 51-member legislative body as speaker for the next four years must convince numerous constituencies of their viability, including some combination of county party leaders, labor unions, the mayor, and other influential politicos. But, when the new Council class convenes in January, the vote will come down to the 51 Council members, and they are not without agency. The speaker candidates, all men, have for months been

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  • city spe canidates

    the City Council Speaker candidates at a prior forum (photo: William Alatriste)


    Seven of the eight candidates vying to become the next Speaker of the New York City Council convened at New York Law School on Monday night for a forum focused on government reform, running the Council, transparency, ethics, voting, and elections.

    The candidates made their cases for their leadership prowess, and discussed extending term limits for Council members, greater transparency around lobbying, key questions about campaign finance reform in the city, and

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  • Mark Peters DOI City Council

    DOI Commissioner Mark Peters (photo: William Alatriste)


    Four years ago, over the veto of then-Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the City Council passed the Community Safety Act, a landmark piece of legislation relating to policing in New York City. One of the law’s most prominent planks was the creation of the NYPD Inspector General, an independent police department watchdog that would audit NYPD practices and operations and make recommendations on improvements.

    With the nation on edge over widely disseminated videos of black men

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