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Letitia James

Letitia James

  • Max & Murphy Podcast: Analyzing the Public Advocate & Comptroller Debates

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


    October 18, 2017 - Max & Murphy: Analyzing the Public Advocate and Comptroller Debates

    brigid at debate nyc votesThe lone public advocate and comptroller debates of the election cycle occurred on Monday and Tuesday, respectively. Brigid Bergin of WNYC radio (pictured, middle) was one of the panelists asking questions at the comptroller debate between

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  • Public Advocate Debate Shows Stark Differences Between James and Polanco

    Tish James JC Polanco public advocate debate via nyc votes

    James & Polanco at their debate (photo: @NYCVotes)


    Public Advocate Letitia James, a Democrat running for reelection, squared off against her Republican opponent, J.C. Polanco, in a friendly yet competitive debate on Monday that highlighted substantive differences, and some shared opinions, between the two candidates on a range of policy issues. Given the race features an incumbent, the debate centered in large part on James’ record as public advocate over the last four years, especially her

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  • City Hall Pushes Back on Proposal that Hits Core Tension of Housing Plan

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    City Hall ralliers with Metro-IAF-NY (photo: @NYCComptroller)


    Thousands of New Yorkers, many of them residents of public housing, braved the rain on Monday, October 9, to rally outside City Hall to push Mayor Bill de Blasio to adopt a new direction for his affordable housing plan. Their alternative proposal, which had been presented by the leading advocates to the mayor ten days prior, calls for a radical investment in building new housing for low-income families, especially seniors, which critics say has

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  • James Defends Approach to De Blasio, Outlines Second Term Priorities

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    Public Advocate James (photo: @NYCProgressives)


    Public Advocate Letitia James, a Democrat running for a second term, is facing a challenge from Republican candidate J.C. Polanco, who believes James has done little to hold accountable a mayor who aligns closely with her own politics. But James, an outspoken former litigator, has her defense ready as the two move toward a televised debate on October 16.

    During a recent ...

  • Max & Murphy Podcast: Public Advocate Letitia James

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


    October 2, 2017 - Max & Murphy with Public Advocate Letitia James

    tish james277Public Advocate Letitia James, a Democrat seeking reelection this year, joined the podcast to discuss her record of the past four years and what she will focus on in a second term if the voters give her that opportunity. James, the first woman of color to be elected to one of three

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  • James Agrees to General Election Debate in Public Advocate Race

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    Public Advocate Letitia James (photo: @TeamstersJC16)


    Public Advocate Letitia James, a Democrat seeking reelection to one of three citywide positions, has agreed to debate her Republican opponent regardless of whether the challenger, J.C. Polanco, meets the fundraising requirements to qualify for an official debate sanctioned and sponsored by the New York City Campaign Finance Board.

    James, who easily won in the

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  • 2017 New York City Primary Election Results

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    NYC Votes sticker, design by Marie Dagata and Scott Heinz


    Mayor Bill de Blasio prevailed convincingly in the Democratic primary Tuesday as he seeks a second term. De Blasio was facing four challengers, most prominently former City Council Member Sal Albanese. With 98% of precincts reporting, de Blasio had secured 74.4% of the vote, to Albanese’s 15.4%, and Michael Tolkin’s 4.7%, Robert Gangi’s 3.1%, and Richard Bashner’s 2.4%. De Blasio had about 317,000 votes; Albanese with about 65,450 in a very low turnout election, where about 15% of

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  • Voters Guide for the 2017 City Primary Election

    de Blasio voting election

    (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


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    by Ben Max, Gotham Gazette
         

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  • Max & Murphy Podcast: Public Advocate Candidate David Eisenbach

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


    August 28, 2017 - Democratic Public Advocate Candidate David Eisenbach

    public adv candidate david eisenbach277pxDavid Eisenbach is a history professor at Columbia University seeking to unseat incumbent Public Advocate Letitia James in this year's Demcratic primary. Eisenbach, who has raised minimal funds for his campaign, believes that James

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  • 10 Great NYC Debate Moments

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    Quinn, Liu, de Blasio, Albanese (from 2013)


    Debates have been an invaluable part of political discourse and elections for centuries. The face-to-face interactions between candidates reveal a lot about their character, policies, and ability to perform under pressure.

    Debates for citywide races in New York -- for Mayor, Comptroller, and Public Advocate -- have played no small part in helping New Yorkers decide which candidates best represent their interests. Ahead of the 2017 debates, which begin Wednesday with the first Democratic mayoral

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  • Republican Citywide Candidates Hopeful Despite Slow Fundraising

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    GOP Comptroller candidate Michel Faulkner


    Ahead of the citywide elections, Republican candidates for Comptroller and Public Advocate -- Michel Faulkner and J.C. Polanco, respectively -- have struggled to raise funds for their campaigns, trailing their respective opponents by large sums.

    With just over three months before Election Day, both Faulkner and Polanco need to significantly increase their fundraising prowess to run competitive races against Comptroller Scott Stringer and Public Advocate Letitia James, both Democrats.

    Faulkner, a former New York Jet and

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  • Planning to Lure Democrats, Polanco Jumps Into Public Advocate Race

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    JC Polanco (screenshot via NY1)


     After receiving endorsements from several Republican clubs and organizations, J.C. Polanco, a Bronx native who is currently the New York City Regional Director for Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb, officially jumped into the race for Public Advocate last week.

    “I had to travel the city and try to get enough support from my party to get the nomination,” Polanco said in an interview with Gotham Gazette. “Now I’m going to start moving from meeting party leaders, county leaders to talk with groups across the

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  • Julissa's Choice and Our Responsibility

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    Julissa Ferreras-Copeland, left, & Tish James, the author, center-left


    New York City’s political scene is reeling from the shocking news that one of its brightest stars is calling it quits. City Council Member Julissa Ferreras-Copeland announced that she won’t run for re-election so she can spend more time to with her family, which includes her young son.

    As the city’s Public Advocate, I’ve worked closely with Julissa as she’s fought with unrelenting passion for the communities she represents. I’ve also watched her closely as she’s balanced the

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  • Federal Government Halts City’s Plan to Establish Private Sector Retirement Savings Program

    de Blasio retirement savings

    (photo: Demetrius Freeman/Mayor’s Office)


    Through a recently-signed resolution, President Donald Trump and the Republican-controlled Congress have struck a death blow to New York City’s plan to become the first city in the country to establish a retirement savings program for private-sector employees.

    After advocates and elected officials identified a crisis in the limited amount most workers have saved for retirement and started calling for government action, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced during his February 2016 State of the

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  • De Blasio’s ‘Fearless’ Moment

    de Blasio fearless girl statue

    De Blasio & "Fearless Girl" (photos: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio walked swiftly down Broadway Monday afternoon with a big smile on his face. The mayor approached the entrance to a barricaded area in which he was about to address gathered members of the media and was stopped for a photo by a group of Girl Scouts. He gladly obliged, then proceeded, approaching the Wall Street Bull, but stopping a few yards short at his destination, the “Fearless Girl” statue.

    De Blasio knelt beside the small statue

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  • To Secure Our Children’s Foundation, Honor Foundation Aid for Schools

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    Public Advocate Letitia James, the author, with two children (photo: @TishJames)


    With so much uncertainty in our country, there’s never been a more critical time to invest in our future and safeguard opportunities for our children. That’s why we must ensure that education funding is protected and our schools have the resources to prepare students for college and the job market.

    Our children cannot perform at their best in overcrowded classrooms with outdated technology and slow internet access -- or, for that matter, with an obsession with

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  • Citywide Electeds Make Social Media Moves Ahead of Election Year

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    Mayor de Blasio at Facebook (photo via Mayor's Office)


    If there’s an undeniable takeaway from the 2016 presidential election, it’s that social media can play a crucial role in how candidates for public office communicate. Nationally and locally, political candidates and elected officials have for years recognized the role that platforms like Twitter and Facebook can play in public engagement and influencing traditional media.

    For New York City’s three citywide elected officials -- Mayor Bill de Blasio, Comptroller Scott Stringer and

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  • City Council Women's Caucus Rallies for Equity Legislation

    womens equality rally pic via cumbo

    Equality rally at City Hall (photo via Council Member Cumbo)


    The Women’s Caucus of the New York City Council announced a legislative package Tuesday aimed at equal rights and opportunities for women. With an “equality rally” outside City Hall before the full Council held a meeting at which some of the bills were introduced, legislators, advocates, and service providers expressed support for the legislation and argued for its necessity in light of Donald Trump’s election as President.

    The co-chairs of the Women’s Caucus, Council

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  • James Wins Battle in Long War Over Public Advocate's Legal Standing

    Tish James presser vets

    Public Advocate Letitia James (photo via @TishJames)


    The Public Advocate’s office was created in 1993 to give a voice to everyday New Yorkers and act as checks on the authority of the Mayor and the function of city agencies. Letitia James, the fourth New York City Public Advocate, has made litigation a major tool in her attempt to fulfill the office’s mandates. James, who has a background as an attorney and has hired several lawyers to her staff since taking office in 2014, has fought the city and its agencies in the

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  • Justice Department Decision Boosts Push for Private Prison Divestment

    GEO stock


    A recent decision by the federal Department of Justice to scale back and eventually end the use of private prisons indirectly impacted New York City’s pension funds, reducing holding values by millions of dollars and leading to renewed calls from activists for the city to divest from the for-profit corporations that operate these prisons.

    Earlier this month, the Obama administration took a major step against an industry that has long been criticized for its culture of violence, secrecy, and the devaluation of human life: private

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  • To Prevent Zika Threats, Reproductive Health Care is Necessary

    bassett mayor zika nychealthy

    City's health commissioner, Dr. Mary Bassett, discusses Zika (photo: @nychealthy)


    As the Zika virus continues to make headlines around the world, it is crucial that our city, state and federal governments do all that they can to prevent the spread of Zika. This is especially important in New York City, home to approximately 25% of the cases in the United States.   

    Our elected officials are doing just that. The Mayor’s Office has unveiled ...

  • Calls Grow for New Council-Led Deed Restriction Process

    MMV deed restriction presser

    Chin, Mark-Viverito, Brewer (l-r) at Wednesday's presser (photo: William Alatriste)


    Armed with the findings of a newly-released investigation that faults City Hall for a “lack of accountability,” Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and City Council Member Margaret Chin called for reform to the city’s deed restriction removal process at a press conference on Wednesday outside City Hall.

    In a show of strength and seriousness, Brewer and Chin were joined by Public Advocate Letitia James,

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  • Proposals Target Closure of Gender Pay Gap

    powherny rally 3 

    photo: @PowherNY


    During a recent panel conversation at The New School, only two people in a crowd of about 50 raised their hands when the audience was asked if they were confident there is no gender pay gap in their workplace. The panel, called “Getting Even,” was organized by the Center for New York City Affairs to discuss the causes of the pay gap between men and women and the steps New York City can take to close it.

    “When men go into traditionally female occupations, they get paid more. So gender is the only differentiator

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  • Legislation Aimed at Holding City Accountable for Rezoning Commitments

    city hall rotunda during announcement

    Announcement at City Hall (photo: Demetrius Freeman/Mayor's Office)


    With the recent passage of the East New York rezoning and community development plan, the city committed to revitalizing the neglected Brooklyn neighborhood by creating affordable housing, investing in community infrastructure, and promoting economic development. The first among 15 neighborhood rezonings planned by Mayor Bill de Blasio, East New York ushers in a new era of planned change and city promises.

    As these rezoning and

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  • James Takes Softer Stance on Atlantic Yards

    james cumbo DNC Azi

    James (at podium) & Cumbo (in green) at Barclays Center (photo: Azi Paybarah)


    When Public Advocate Letitia (Tish) James served as City Council Member for the 35th District in Brooklyn, from 2003 through 2013, she was a vocal, high-profile opponent of the Atlantic Yards megaproject, as reflected in the 2011 documentary Battle for Brooklyn.

    James was a plaintiff in ...