Bronx BP Race Tomorrow
April 20th, 2009

<i>From Diaz's campaign site.</i>

From Diaz's campaign site.

The approximately 1.4 million residents of the Bronx will get a new borough president tomorrow, but from the looks of it no one seems to notice.

A race where the results are pretty much predetermined, tomorrow’s election pits Assemblymember Ruben Diaz Jr., a Democrat, against actor Anthony Ribustello, a Republican. Technically, tomorrow’s special election — triggered by the resignation of former president Adolfo Carrion who now works for the Obama administration — is nonpartisan. Diaz is expected to win the seat handily.

For more on the intricacies of this race and Bronx politics, see “The Bronx Family Feud.”

In the 2005 general election, 158,761 people turned out to vote for the borough president race. Tomorrow’s election turnout is expected to be much, much smaller.

This race was not always lackluster. At one point, Councilmember Joel Rivera — whose father had headed the Bronx Democratic party until late last year — was expected to challenge Diaz for the seat. That race never happened. Rivera said he wanted to put “politics aside” (in effect, raising the white flag in a political dispute that had mired the Bronx for months).

Since then, Diaz has denied public financing to run the campaign, saying it was less than “competitive.” Since Rivera dropped out, Diaz has doubled the size of his campaign account, from a little over $200,000 to $405,677, according to the latest campaign finance records.

According to an analysis by Gotham Gazette, more than half of the total account, $210,425, is from contributors who live outside of the Bronx. According to his most recent filing, Diaz has raised at least $22,000 from the real estate industry since the end of February (which was when Rivera dropped out) and has received a significant sum from the city’s construction industry.

Five employees at Masonry Services, which is based in Brooklyn but has projects in the Bronx, have given him the maxed out contribution for a borough president special election, totaling $9,625. He has also received four maxed out donations from MJM Construction, which also has a history of doing projects in the Bronx.

By on April 20, 2009, 2:57 pm
In category: Albany,Community Development,Electoral Politics,Gotham City,Governing,Law,nextNY | Comments Off on Bronx BP Race Tomorrow

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