Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

2021 Election

2021 Election

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    Curtis Sliwa on the campaign trail (photo: @CurtisSliwa)


    With relatively little money in the bank and only a tenuous tie to his newfound party, Curtis Sliwa, the Republican nominee for mayor, is running on name recognition and four-decade history of catching headlines. But in public appearances and on his website he has put forth an outline of his vision for New York City with policies that span the political spectrum.

    Sliwa has been a peripheral figure amongst the characters of New York City since the 1980s when his neighborhood watch

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    Council Member Justin Brannan, left, & challenger Brian Fox


    Justin Brannan, a first-term Democrat from southern Brooklyn, wants to be the next speaker of the City Council. But first he must win his reelection race in District 43 against Republican nominee Brian Fox, a controversial candidate with a history of sharing conspiracy theories and misinformation espoused by the alt-right.

    Brannan is promising a continuation of what he says was a productive first term in which he brought much needed resources back to his district and concertedly responded to

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    Eric Adams & Curtis Sliwa


    With early voting set to begin on Saturday, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, the Democratic mayoral nominee, squared off on Wednesday against his Republican rival, Guardian Angels founder Curtis Sliwa, in the first of two official debates of the general election.

    The debate was hosted by the New York City Campaign Finance Board in partnership with WNBC-TV, Telemundo, Politico, Citizens Budget Commission, and the New York Urban League. Early voting will be October 23-31 and Election Day is Tuesday, November 2. Absentee

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  • Gotham Gazette:

    Manhattan DA candidates Alvin Bragg, left, & Thomas Kenniff


    The two candidates running for Manhattan District Attorney in the imminent fall election met recently for a spirited televised debate, with issues ranging from the bail system to gun violence and each aspirant’s record of public service.

    Democratic nominee Alvin Bragg, a former prosecutor and top deputy New York Attorney General, and Republican nominee Thomas Kenniff, a former military judge and criminal defense attorney, sparred over their resumes and visions for the office in a debate hosted by

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    (l-r) Devin Balkind, Devi Nampiaparampil, Jumaane Williams, & Tony Herbert


    Candidates for New York City Public Advocate in the fast-approaching 2021 general election discussed their visions for the city’s second highest office during two recent TV debates.

    On Tuesday night, incumbent Democratic Public Advocate Jumaane Williams and Republican nominee Dr. Devi Nampiaparampil met for a one-on-one debate hosted by NY1 and other partners and moderated by Errol Louis, Spectrum NY1’s political anchor. The debate was an official, New York City Campaign Finance

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    A Yang mayoral campaign event (photo by guest Chris Coffey, @chriscoffeytalk, Yang co-campaign manager)


    October 19, 2021 - Max Politics Podcast: Chris Coffey on the Yang Mayoral Campaign, Eric Adams & More

    Chris Coffey, the co-CEO of Tusk Strategies and co-campaign manager of Andrew Yang's 2021 mayoral campaign, joined the show to reflect on the Democratic primary, discuss Eric Adams' likely mayoralty, lessons from his time working for Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and more.

    Listen to the conversation and let us know

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    Keith Powers, top left & David Casavis, top right, with moderator Ben Max


    City Council Member Keith Powers, a Democrat, and his Republican opponent in this year's election, David Casavis, met for a debate hosted by Manhattan Neighborhood Network and moderated by Gotham Gazette editor Ben Max. They are vying to represent Council District 4, which includes several neighborhoods on the East Side of Manhattan, as well as Times Square. Watch:

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    Voters at the voting booth (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    There are five yes or no questions on the 2021 general election ballot across New York, asking voters to approve or disapprove changes to the state constitution. All the items on the ballot have been passed by two successive classes of the State Legislature and now go to the voters. They includes measures related to legislative redistricting, voting, clean air and water, and more.

    Four experts joined host Ben Max for a Manhattan Neighborhood Network

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    Allie Ryan, top left, and Juan Pagan, with moderator Ben Max


    Two candidates for City Council District 2 in Manhattan met for a general election debate hosted by Manhattan Neighborhood Network and moderated by Gotham Gazette editor Ben Max. Allie Ryan is on the Neighborhood ballot line and Juan Pagan on the Independent ballot line. Democratic Party nominee and incumbent Council Member Carlina Rivera declined to participate in the debate. Watch:

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    Gale Brewer, top left, & Nancy Sliwa, with moderator Ben Max


    City Council District 6 candidates Gale Brewer, the Democratic Party nominee, and Nancy Sliwa, the Republican Party nominee, met for a debate hosted by Manhattan Neighborhood Network and moderated by Gotham Gazette editor Ben Max. Watch:

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    (l-r) Top: Tony Herbert, Jumaane Williams; Bottom: Devin Balkind, Ben Max (moderator), Devi Nampiaparampil


    Four candidates for New York City Public Advocate met for a general election debate hosted by Manhattan Neighborhood Network and moderated by Gotham Gazette editor Ben Max: Democratic Party nominee and incumbent Jumaane Williams; Republican Party nominee Dr. Devi Nampiaparampil; Libertarian Party nominee Devin Balkind; and Conservative Party nominee Tony Herbert (who participated for only the first 20 minutes of the debate). Watch:

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    Council Member Matteo at a groundbreaking in CD50 (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    Republicans currently hold only three seats in the New York City Council and District 50 on Staten Island is one of them. The mid-island district is currently represented by Council Member Stephen Matteo, the Council’s Minority Leader who is term limited and unsuccessfully ran in the Republican primary for borough president. Three candidates are vying to replace him in the general election including a former City Council member, a top aide to Matteo, and a real

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    Voters at the polls (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    In New York, we are just weeks away from going to the polls to vote in the general election. You may know that we will vote for various important positions in our local government, such as the mayor of New York City and county executives outside of the Big Apple. You may not know that, across the state, we will also be voting on critical ballot questions. To strengthen democracy in our state, it’s important that you vote “yes” on three key questions to reform the

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    Curtis Sliwa on the campaign trail (photo: @CurtisSliwa)


    October 12, 2021 - Max Politics Podcast: Curtis Sliwa on His Run for Mayor

    Mayoral candidate Curtis Sliwa, the Republicna nominee who will also be on an independent ballot line, joined the show to discuss his candidacy, his platform, his past, and more.

    Listen to the conversation and let us know what you think, on Twitter @TweetBenMax. You can listen to the show through the embedded audio below or download the episode

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     (l-r) Top: Bill Pepitone, Stacey Prussman; Bottom: Raja Flores, Ben Max, Skiboky Stora


    Four candidates for mayor of New York City who will be on the general election ballot appeared for a debate hosted by Manhattan Neighborhood Network and moderated by Gotham Gazette's Ben Max: Conservative Party nominee Bill Pepitone; Libertarian Party nominee Stacey Prussman; Raja Flores, who will be on the Humanity United ballot line; and Skiboky Stora, who will be on the Out Lawbreaker ballot line. Watch:

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    Christopher Marte (top right), Jacqueline Toboroff (bottom left) & Maud Maron (bottom right)


    Candidates for City Council District 1 (Lower Manhattan) met for a general election debate hosted by Manhattan Neighborhood Network and moderated by Gotham Gazette's Ben Max: Democratic nominee Christopher Marte; Republican nominee Jackie Toboroff; and Maud Maron, who will be on the Independent NY ballot line. Watch:

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    Comptroller candidates Daby Carreras, left, and Paul Rodriguez


    New York City Comptroller candidates Paul Rodriguez, the Conservative Party nominee, and Daby Carreras, the Republican Party nominee, met for a debate hosted by Manhattan Neighborhood Network and moderated by Gotham Gazette's Ben Max. Democratic nominee Brad Lander declined to participate in the debate. Watch:

  • Gotham Gazette:

    Alvin Bragg, left, & Thomas Kenniff


    In the general election for Manhattan District Attorney, Democratic nominee Alvin Bragg and Republican nominee Thomas Kenniff met for a debate hosted by Manhattan Neighborhood Network and moderated by Gotham Gazette's Ben Max. Watch:

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    State Senate elections hearing (photo: @CitizensUnionNY)


    The State Senate analyzed the execution of the June primary elections in a major hearing Tuesday that included testimony from election administrators for New York City and State, as well as counties, and election reform experts. The lawmakers not only examined how elections were run, but the systems and structures that undergirded their performance -- and, as many said, enabled their failures. 

    Tuesday's event was unusual in that it served as the culmination of a series of public hearings held

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    Alvin Bragg, left, & Thomas Kenniff


    With Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. retiring after 12 years leading one of the most high-profile prosecutorial offices in the country, Alvin Bragg emerged from a crowded, competitive, expensive, and closely-watched Democratic primary and is now in the midst of a one-on-one general election. Bragg, a progressive former prosecutor and top deputy New York Attorney General, competing with Republican nominee Thomas Kenniff, a former military judge and criminal defense attorney.

    The

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     Tiffany Cabán, left, and Felicia Kalan


    As in many other races in New York City this election cycle, public safety is the defining issue in the general election in Queens’ City Council District 22, where a rising leftist political star who wants to abolish prisons and the police is facing a Republican pitching a far more conserative approach and ‘common sense’ moderation in the overwhelmingly Democratic district.

    The major party nominees are Tiffany Cabán, a democratic socialist and former public defender who won the Democratic

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  • Senator Myrie Brooklyn Albany

    Senator Zellnor Myrie (photo: NY Senate)


    After a novel round of public hearings throughout the state, the New York State Senate elections committee is gearing up to hold its traditional post-election oversight hearing, where the New York City and State boards of elections will have to answer questions about what went right and what went wrong in the primaries earlier this year.

    On September 21, lawmakers will have their perennial conversation with representatives from the boards, as well as good government groups and other election experts, where

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    Voting (photo: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office)


    In addition to municipal elections across the state, including the consequential New York City mayor's race, all New York voters will have an opportunity to approve or disapprove five state constitutional amendments on the ballot this fall. If any of them are ratified through general election voting -- and that is likely given the state's recent history of ballot referenda -- they will be enshrined in the state's central governing document.

    The questions before voters have already been drafted and

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    Gotham Gazette:

    The road to City Hall (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayor's Office)


    Note (September 3, 2021): This article has been updated to reflect public matching funds payments to Eric Adams and Curtis Sliwa of roughly $2 million and $2.6 million respectively. Those payments were announced by the city's Campaign Finance Board on September 2.

    Eric Adams has continued a robust fundraising operation since receiving the Democratic nomination for mayor, bolstering his chances of sailing smoothly to victory in the November general election against his long-shot

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  • Gotham Gazette:

    Tiffany Cabán (photo: cabanforqueens.com)


    Tiffany Cabán, one of the city’s most prominent leftist leaders and the recently-victorious Democratic nominee for City Council in Queens’ 22nd District, says that no other profession could have prepared her for politics more than her seven years as a public defender.

    And as Cabán, who must still win the general election in which she is heavily favored given the district’s overwhelming Democratic voter enrollment advantage, eyes joining the City Council and making an impact there, she is reflecting on

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