This week, WFP’s progressive champions won in every corner of the state, winning 27 out of our 33 primaries. The lesson: when you run people that put forward progressive values, they can win anywhere — whether they’re in big cities, in the suburbs, or in small towns.
Here are some of Tuesday’s highlights:
In New York City every one of the Council’s progressive incumbents held their seats. On top of that, a new class of progressive members were elected, including three incredible women. Diana Ayala claimed victory late Tuesday night in an upset in for the District 8 seat held by the current Speaker of the Council. Alicka Samuel came up with a massive win in the Brownsville Brooklyn-based 41st District, running on the need for more affordable housing. In Carlina Rivera’s six-way race in the 2nd District she pulled a landslide victory with over 60% over the vote.
Longtime community activist and WFP ally Justin Brannan will represent his home community of Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, after he wins his general election in November. In Queens, Francisco Moya— endorsed by a huge slate of progressive organizations and activists (like civil rights leader John Lewis!) — pulled through with an important victory for decency and public integrity.
The victory of Carlos Menchaca, representing Sunset Park, who serves as the chair of the Council’s Immigration Committee, means that even during the Trump administration, immigrants will have a champion defending their right to live and work in New York City without fear of raids and deportation. Finally, Eric Gonzalez defeated a field of five other candidates in a landslide victory, and is one step closer to becoming the first Latino Brooklyn District Attorney. His election means a progressive DA that will reform the criminal justice system and prioritize public safety for all our communities.
And WFP Progressive Champions were winning in every corner of the state — here are just a few this week’s winners.
In Yonkers, since being elected as one of the youngest Councilmembers in New York State four years ago, Corazon Piñeda fought for ‘Raise the Age’, ‘ban the box’, and paid sick leave legislation to make sure everyone in Yonkers gets a fair shot at a better life.
In Middletown, the Mid-Hudson Valley middle school teacher, Sparrow Tobin won a hotly contested Democratic primary for an Alderman seat. Tobin knows first-hand what his students and their families need, and will fight for a better and more meaningful curriculum and adequate funding for public schools.
In Niagara County, teacher and union member Michelle Roman grew increasingly frustrated by the lack of accountability from local elected officials. In January, when she becomes Lockport’s 5th Ward Alderman, she’ll be ready to institute the critical reforms her community needs so everyone can fully participate in local decision making.
In Columbia County, Kamal Johnson finally took the leap to lead when he saw the quality of life for the youth in his community sink to an all time low. As the Alderman in the City of Hudson, he’s hoping to provide other young people with a familiar face that is reflective of their community and inspire them to run for office.
In Albany, during Dorcey Applyrs’ first three years in office, she worked hard to improve the health and well-being for every Albany resident. On the Albany Common Council, she’s focusing on policies that address the city’s health disparities and protect Albany’s most vulnerable populations.
Strong progressive voices, like the ones from the candidates above, serve as the first line of defense against attacks on our public schools, our healthcare, and the safety of our families and our neighbors. But they can only get elected with your help. Join as a WFP sustainer and help build the independent progressive power we need to continue our year-round work.
Tuesday’s results confirm what we always knew — that the progressive movement can bring the energy of the resistance to the ballot box. But these results only happen with supporters like you.
Here’s to Tuesday’s big victories, and to even bigger victories in November.
Working Families Party