Gotham Gazette

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Citizens Union


53rd State Assembly District

by David Howard King, May 21, 2013

Vito Lopez, the man who held an iron grip on Brooklyn politics for years, was already planning to run for City Council when the Assembly voted to boot him from his seat for his involvement in a number of sexual harassment cases. The details of Lopez’s unwanted advances towards his young staffers were shocking even by Albany standards and they also hurt Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver who had not acted to punish Lopez for his behavior until it became public. Now, anti-Lopez groups have their candidate to fill the seat and Lopez and his backers have two.


Maritza Davila

Maritza Davila (D)

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Biography: Davila, who ran against Councilwoman Diana Reyna four years ago, is backed by Lopez. Davilla is a former member of The Ridgewood Bushwick Senior Citizen Council that is run by Lopez, Davila has enjoyed the help of Lopez’s staffers and campaign apparatus.

CFB Funds Raised: $N/A


Charvey Gonzalez

Charvey Gonzalez (D)

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Biography: Gonzalez works as legislative director for Sen. Martin Dilan--a close Lopez ally. The Dilan family has a history of running their loyalists for seats in Brooklyn.

CFB Funds Raised: $N/A


Jason Otano

Jason Otano (D)

Twitter | Facebook | Website

Biography: Former general counsel to Borough President Marty Markowitz, Otano ran a failed bid to oust Sen. Martin Dilan last year. This year Otano has amassed the support of the anti-Lopez crowd and has major endorsements from labor and political groups, incuding Tenants PAC, New Kings Democrats, The Working Families Party and Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez.

CFB Funds Raised: $N/A



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