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December 9, 2016 / 9 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘election’

Election 2016 The Jewish Perspective

Thursday, October 27th, 2016

Talmud Torah of Flatbush together with The Jewish Press are holding a forum on the upcoming election on November 8. The Audience will learn what the candidates stand for on issues that are important to the Jewish community.

New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind who is a staunch advocate for Jews and Jewish causes will be answering questions regarding Mr. Trump. Rabbi Menachem Genack who is the CEO of the Kashrut Division of the Orthodox Union and is the spiritual leader of Congregation Shomerei Emunah in Englewood, New Jersey* will be answering questions regarding Mrs. Clinton.

Questions will be taken from the audience as well as those put together by the sponsors of the forum.

The moderator of the forum is Leon Goldenberg who is the radio host of Community Matters, First Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors at COJO of Flatbush, board member of Agudas Israel of America and numerous other organizations.*

The Master of Ceremony is Richard Levine Esq. President of Congregation Talmud Torah of Flatbush*

The event is being held at Talmud Torah of Flatbush 1305 Coney Island Avenue (between Avenues I and J) in Brooklyn, on Monday, October 31 at 7:30 (doors open at 7:00).

 

*Organization affiliation is for identification purposes only.

Jewish Press Staff

The 2016 Presidential Election

Thursday, October 27th, 2016

Until the presidential campaign got helplessly mired in the failings and missteps of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, the long-awaited clash between the left of center and conservative approaches to American governance seemed to be at hand. Mrs. Clinton embraced and in many respects promised to add to the former while Mr. Trump urged a pullback in specific areas and a general shift toward the right.

Unfortunately, attention soon began to focus on the candidates themselves rather than the positions they advocated. This is not to say that aspects of a candidate’s makeup are not valid campaign issues. It is just that the hope for a principled debate soon became dimmed.

In our view, therefore, readers must consider all of the issues – personal and substantive – and decide for themselves which candidate, when all is said or done, comes closest to their own perspectives and which candidate can be trusted to carry through on campaign promises.

As far back as May, The New York Times – which has strongly endorsed Mrs. Clinton for the presidency and roundly condemned Mr. Trump – featured an astonishing news analysis headlined “Emails Add to Hillary Clinton’s Central Problem: Voters Just Don’t Trust Her.”

In pertinent part the analysis noted:

For more than a year, Hillary Clinton has traveled the country talking to voters about her policy plans…. But as the Democratic primary contest comes to a close, any hopes Mrs. Clinton had of running a high-minded, policy focused campaign have collided with a more visceral problem.Voters just don’t trust her.

The Clinton campaign had hoped to use the coming weeks to do everything they could to shed that image and convince voters that Mrs. Clinton can be trusted.

Instead they must contend with a damaging new report by the State Department’s inspector general that Mrs. Clinton had not sought or received approval to use a private email server while she was secretary of state.

It is not just that the inspector general found fault with her email practices. The report speaks directly to a wounding perception that Mrs. Clinton is not forthright or transparent.

After months of Mrs. Clinton’s saying she used a private email for convenience, and that she was willing to cooperate fully with investigations into her handling of official business at the State Department, the report…. undermined both claims.

Mrs. Clinton, through her lawyers, declined to be interviewed by the inspector general as part of the review….

And then there were all those instances when Mrs. Clinton’s e-mails were subpoenaed by Congress, some of which went “missing” and then there was a scrubbing of others that remained; her claim that she exercised due care for official documents and never transmitted “classified” information but also said she didn’t recognize the “classified” marking. She was criticized in Congress for these actions, and for her erroneous claim that her lawyers had vetted all of her e-mails and separated official e-mails from non-official ones. And of course many attorneys have expressed the opinion that the FBI report on Mrs. Clinton’s clearly points to criminal liability on her part and that the FBI broke with procedures in giving her a pass.

Similarly, with respect to the terrorist attack on an American facility in Benghazi while she was secretary of state, Mrs. Clinton insisted for five days that the attack was the result of a spontaneous reaction to an anti-Muslim video movie. Yet it emerged afterward that she was aware it was a planned Islamic attack against an American facility (and this despite President Obama’s assurances that Islamic forces had earlier been driven from the area).

Then came the cascade of information about her habit, as secretary of state, to grant special access to people making large grants to the Clinton Family Foundation and offering her husband extraordinarily lucrative speaking engagements.

Most recently, there was WikiLeaks material quoting her to the effect that she believes elected officials must often take two positions on issues, one for public consideration and one for private, serious consumption.

For those reasons Mrs. Clinton became the main issue, not her agenda.

As for Mr. Trump, a recently uncovered 2005 tape of his employing crass and sexist language created a firestorm and made his character a central concern for many voters. Actually, from the start his campaign was defined largely by the pointedly general rather than specific observations on policy questions that marked his speeches and, significantly, his tendency to speak more forcefully and emphatically than many had been accustomed to hearing in polite company.

For example, as a way of stemming crime on the part of illegal immigrants and the ability of terrorists to slip into our country, he called for a temporary halt on Muslims entering the country and a severe tightening of our border with Mexico. In the process he referred to many illegal aliens as sexual predators. He also spoke of the need to plan for the deportation of those already here illegally.

Mrs. Clinton, a compliant mainstream media, and many Republican officials roundly condemned such blunt talk and succeeded in painting Trump’s proposals as ludicrous and not thought through. Yet to do more than broadly call for such measures is impossible without an intimate knowledge of the federal agencies involved, something one gets from actually being in office.

To be sure, Mr. Trump used excessive language in describing illegal immigrant lawbreakers, opening himself to criticism in that regard. But the issue he raised is a valid one, deserving more ventilation.

With respect to foreign/military affairs and trade policies, Mr. Trump’s arguments for more robust America-oriented approaches have been ridiculed by Mrs. Clinton as naïve for not taking into full account that other countries have their own interests to pursue. Yet Mr. Trump’s point is that the U.S. cannot and should not continue to promote the interests of other countries without paying due attention to its own.

One of the more disturbing issues raised by some of the WikiLeaks documents concerns quotes from Mrs. Clinton indicating that she supports open borders, which would mean the end of the America we have come to know. Allowing groups of foreign nationals unrestricted access to our shores means the end of any incentives for newcomers to blend into our society.

Editorial Board

GOP Candidate Donald Trump Endorsed by Nevada’s Biggest Newspaper, Owned by Adelson

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016

GOP presidential candidate Donald J. Trump has received his first major newspaper endorsement from the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the biggest newspaper in Nevada.

Owned by Sheldon Adelson, the newspaper has a daily circulation of 98,000 and a Sunday distribution of about 119,000. The Las Vegas Review-Journal is considered the “go-to” news outlet for politicians hunting for voters in Nevada.

A number of smaller newspapers have also endorsed. But Adelson, who promised earlier in the year to endorse the GOP candidate, has kept Republicans holding their breath.

Back in May, Adelson told The Washington Post he would “strongly encourage my fellow Republicans – especially our Republican elected officials, party loyalists and operative, and those who provide important financial backing – to do the same… If Republicans do not come together in support of Trump, [President Barack] Obama will essentially be granted something the Constitution does not allow – a third term in the name of Hillary Clinton. I’ve spent time talking to Donald Trump. Do I agree with him on every issue? No. But it’s unlikely that any American agrees with his or her preferred candidate on every issue,” he said.

Since that time, however, Adelson has said little and pundits have been left wondering how committed to the Trump camp he really was. The weekend’s endorsement clarifies that position, and although Adelson and his wife are strong advocates for Israel, there is no mention of the Jewish State in the editorial.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal said in its endorsement, that “History tells us that agents for reform often generate fear and alarm among those intent on preserving their cushy sinecures. It’s hardly a shock, then, that the 2016 campaign has produced a barrage of unceasing vitriol directed toward Mr. Trump. But let us not be distracted by the social media sideshows and carnival clatter…

“The past eight years have pushed us $20 trillion into debt, obligations that will burden our children and grandchildren. The nation’s economy sputters under the growing weight of federal edicts and regulations that smother growth and innovation. Obamacare threatens to crash and burn. The middle class struggles. An administration promising hope and unity instead brought division.

“Yet Hillary Clinton promises to lead us down the same path. She’ll cuddle up to the ways and perks of Washington like she would to a cozy old blanket.”

The Republican candidate, wrote the editorial board, “brings a corporate sensibility and a steadfast determination to an ossified Beltway culture. He advocates for lower taxes and a simplified tax code, in contrast to his opponent’s plan to extract another $1 trillion from the private economy in order to enlarge the bureaucracy. Mr. Trump understands and appreciates the conditions that lead to prosperity and job creation and would be a friend to small business and entrepreneurship. Mrs. Clinton has spent most of her adult life on the public payroll.

“Of particular importance is the U.S. Supreme Court. The next president may be charged with filling multiple vacancies, shaping the court’s direction for a generation. Mr. Trump prefers nominees who recognize the Constitution’s checks on federal authority as a bulwark against tyranny. Mrs. Clinton would be a disaster in this regard.”

The newspaper bluntly goes on to acknowledge that Donald Trump is no angel, nor is he the suave expert in political presentation that might have won him vastly more friends – or votes – on the campaign trail, had he taken the trouble to do something about all those rough edges his handlers struggle with.

“Yes, Mr. Trump’s impulsiveness and overheated rhetoric alienate many voters. He has trouble dealing with critics and would be wise to discover the power of humility,” notes the editorial board.”

“But neither candidate will ever be called to the dais to accept an award for moral probity and character. And we are already distressingly familiar with the Clinton way, which involves turning public service into an orgy of influence peddling and entitlement designed to line their own pockets — precisely what a disgruntled electorate now rises up to protest.

“Mr. Trump represents neither the danger his critics claim nor the magic elixir many of his supporters crave. But he promises to be a source of disruption and discomfort to the privileged, back-scratching political elites for whom the nation’s strength and solvency have become subservient to power’s pursuit and preservation.

“Donald Trump for president,” the editorial board states, simply.

Click here to read the entire endorsement.

Hana Levi Julian

Rosh Hashanah: The Real Election Day

Wednesday, September 28th, 2016

We are living through unusually challenging times at the cusp of the year 5777. The manner in which secular society is evolving poses numerous challenges for us as Torah-observant Jews. In addition, the general political and social state of the world is one that engenders deep pessimism.

The decay of American society as we have known it for so long is deeply troubling. The institutions we have come to rely on to maintain an open, democratic society are crumbling before our very eyes. Government is less trusted now than ever before. The rule of law and the ability of law enforcement to do its job has been undermined by the elites of society, the press, and many elected officials. This has led to rioting and anarchy in several American inner cities. Rabble-rousers are waiting for the opportunity to inflame passions and light the powder keg of race riots with all that this entails.

It is not just America that has been affected. The world order as we know it is changing before our eyes. American power is not what it used to be. As America pulls back somewhat from the international stage, new actors fill the void. Regimes that have histories of repression and violence such as Russia and Iran are making pacts with each other.

A world from which America retreats is a dangerous world indeed.

To add to all of this, it appears the candidates running for the coveted office of president of the United States are the least popular to ever face the American voter. The qualifications, policies, temperaments, and ethics of the candidates leave much be desired – to the extent that many astute observers are truly afraid about the future of America and by extension the world.

These are the sobering thoughts that engulf us as we prepare for another Rosh Hashanah when Hashem will judge the world and seal the decree for the upcoming year.

So how can we strengthen ourselves? Is there a silver lining in the ominous clouds darkening the horizon? Most important, what can we do to invoke Divine Mercy on behalf of ourselves, our families, and all of the Jewish nation as we seek His favor and beg Him to inscribe us for a year of blessing and success?

* * * * *

Let us seek inspiration and insight from a fascinating pasuk in this week’s parshah. In the preceding parshah, the Torah enumerates the profound blessing we will receive for following Hashem’s commandments and conversely the terrible tochachah, punishment, we will undergo if we do not listen to His commandments. The pasuk in this week’s parshah continues by stating, “It will be when all these things come upon you – the blessings and the curse that I have presented before you – then you will return in your heart among all the nations where Hashem your God has dispersed you. And you will return to Hashem your God and listen to His voice… you and your children with all your heart and all your soul” (Devarim 30:1-2).

There are a number of words in this pasuk that require analysis. The pasuk states, “Vehasheivosa el levavech b’chol hagoyim – You will return in your heart among all the nations…” The simple understanding of this concept is that in the parshiyos of Ki Savo and Bechukosai Hashem enumerates the terrible curses and punishments that will befall the Jewish people if they stray from the proper path. The Torah is telling us that in order to stop the pain and suffering caused by the retribution or even to avoid it in the first place, Bnei Yisrael should engage in teshuvah and return to Hashem.

Certainly that is true, but we must still understand why the pasuk adds two seemingly extra words. The pasuk says, “Vehasheivosa el levavecha b’chol hagoyim – You will return in your heart among all the nations…” Where do the two words “bchol hagoyim” come into the picture? What is the connection between the nations of the world and the teshuvah that Klal Yisrael does after receiving the tochachah?

Perhaps we can suggest that there is an additional component that spurs bnei Yisrael to return to Hashem. When we engage in teshuvah, it is not solely because we wish to receive the infinite blessings of Hashem and avoid the terrible retribution heaped upon those who rebel against Him. There is another vitally important catalyst for returning to Hashem, and wanting to be part of the am Hashem, the nation of Hashem. This occurs when we come to the irrefutable realization that the nations surrounding us and in whose midst we live have nothing to offer us.

When looking at the host culture, we observe its modes of “recreation,” what people do for “fun,” and we realize they have little of lasting benefit to offer us. When we think about where society is headed, we realize that with all of the advancements and the tremendous strides – industrial, technological, medical – that humanity has made, the host culture is characterized by moral decadence combined with unbridled hedonism. Not only is it the diametric opposite of the way the Torah desires that we conduct our lives, but it also fails to bring the happiness and joy that is its purported purpose.

Engaging in the unrestrained pleasure seeking that has become the norm in the host culture does not satisfy our soul. Rather, it is akin to a thirsty person drinking saltwater and wondering why he is even thirstier than he was before, after the passing of the momentary feeling of satisfaction he feels as the wet liquid touches his mouth.

The pasuk is thus teaching us that another motivation for “vehasheivosa el levavechafor returning to Hashem, refraining from aveiros, and performing His mitzvos – is “b’chol hagoyim,” by looking around and seeing how the moral conduct of a society such as the one that surrounds us cannot guide us. This is a culture to which we do not really belong.

Rav Dovid Hofstedter

This Election is Unpredictable

Thursday, September 15th, 2016

This is the strangest presidential election in my memory. Despite the polls, the outcome is utterly unpredictable. This was true even before Hillary Clinton’s recent health issue. Just consider this: it was only a month ago that the Washington Post declared a landslide victory for Hillary Clinton,

“[A] dispassionate examination of the data, combined with a coldblooded look at the candidates, the campaigns and presidential elections, produces only one possible conclusion: Hillary Clinton will defeat Donald Trump in November… Three months from now, with the 2016 presidential election in the rearview mirror, we will look back and agree that the presidential election was over on Aug. 9th.”

On August 24, Slate, a liberal online magazine owned by the Washington Post, similarly declared, “There is no horse race: it’s Clinton by a mile, with Trump praying for black swans” — only to “predict” one week later “Trump-Clinton Probably Won’t be A Landslide.” A few days ago, in a desperate attempt to analyze the new polls showing Trump closing in on Clinton, Slate explained sheepishly, “Things realistically couldn’t have gotten much worse for Trump than they were a few weeks ago, and so it’s not a shock that they instead have gotten a little better of late.” Some current polls even show Trump with a slight lead.

The reality is that polling is incapable of accurately predicting the outcome of elections like this one, where so many voters are angry, resentful, emotional, negative, and frightened. In my new book, Electile Dysfunction: A Guide for the Unaroused Voter” I discuss in detail why so many voters now say they won’t vote at all, or will vote for a third-party candidate. As the New York Times reported, “Only 9% of America Chose Trump and Clinton as the Nominees.” Or to put the voter’s frustration with the candidates more starkly, “Eighty-one percent of Americans say they would feel afraid following the election of one of the two polarizing politicians.”

Despite their perceived lack of agency, these voters may, of course, end up voting for one of the two major candidates when Election Day comes around.

This may depend in part on whether the Johnson-Weld ticket does well enough in the polls to be included in the presidential and vice presidential debates. The rules require that a third-party candidate reach 15 percent in five national polls. This number is difficult to achieve because many of the polls do not include third-party candidates. But it is not impossible, and if it were to occur, and if the Johnson-Weld ticket outperformed or held its own against Clinton and Trump, then people who had decided not to vote or who couldn’t make up their minds might cast ballots for the Libertarian candidates.

It is unlikely that the Stein/Baraka ticket will be included in the debates or that it will garner any significant number of voters in key states, because the candidates are so extreme in their views and so out of the mainstream of American political beliefs. However, if a significant number of voters do vote for a third or fourth party, this could impact the election, as the votes for Ralph Nader in 2000 may have determined the Florida outcome, which in turn determined the general election outcome.

The bottom line is that in a bizarre election like this one — with so many variables and so much emotion — polls may well under- or over-predict votes for the two major candidates. Think about the vote on Brexit. Virtually all the polls — including exit polls that asked voters what they had voted for — got it wrong. The financial markets got it wrong. The bookies got it wrong. The 2016 presidential election is more like the Brexit vote in many ways than it is like prior presidential elections. Both Brexit and this presidential election involve raw emotion, populism, anger, nationalism, class division, and other factors that distort accuracy in polling. So anyone who thinks they know who will be the next president of the United States is deceiving themselves!

To be sure, the Electoral College vote is sometimes less difficult to predict than the popular vote, because it generally turns on a handful of closely contested critical states, such as Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. But in this election, there could be surprises in states that are usually secure for one party or the other. So even the electoral vote will be more difficult to predict than in previous elections.

One reason for this unique unpredictability is the unique unpredictability of Donald Trump himself. No one really knows what he will say or do between now and the election. His position on important issues may change. Live televised debates will not allow him to rely on a teleprompter, as he largely did in his acceptance speech or in his speech during his visit to Mexico City. He may once again become a loose cannon. No one can predict what he will say or do next. This may gain him votes, or it may lose him votes. Just remember: few, if any, pundits accurately predicted how far Trump would get when he first entered the race. When it comes to Donald Trump, the science of polling seems inadequate to the task.

Hillary Clinton is more predictable, but her past actions may produce unpredictable results, as they did when FBI Director James Comey characterized her conduct with regard to her emails as “extremely careless.” It is also possible that more damaging information about her private email server or the Clinton Foundation may come from WikiLeaks or other such sources (whether these “revelations” are actually incriminating seems to be beside the point for those 54% of voters who, without first-hand knowledge of the investigation, suspect that the FBI engaged in a preferential treatment by not seeking criminal charges against Clinton.) Finally, it is difficult to assess what impact, if any, her recent health issues may have on voters.

Another unpredictable factor that may impact the election is whether there are terrorist attacks in the lead-up to the voting. Islamic extremists would almost certainly like to see Trump beat Clinton, because they believe a Trump presidency would result in the kind of instability on which they thrive. If ISIS attacks American targets in late October, that could turn some undecided voters in favor of the candidate who says he will do anything to stop terrorism. If voters were to change their votes based on terrorist acts, that would only encourage more terrorism in the run-up to elections.

A final reason why this election is so unpredictable is because voter turnout is unpredictable. The “Bernie or bust” crowd is threatening to stay home or vote for the Green Party. Young voters may do here what they did in Great Britain: many failed to vote in the Brexit referendum and then regretted their inaction when it became clear that if they had voted in the same proportion as older voters, Brexit would likely have been defeated. Some Clinton supporters worry that black voters who voted in large numbers for Barack Obama may cast fewer votes for Clinton in this election. Voters who usually vote Republican but can’t bring themselves to pull the lever for Trump may decide to stay home. Turnout is unpredictable, and the effect of low voter turnout is also unpredictable.

So for all these reasons and others, no one can tell how this election will turn out. It would be a real tragedy and an insult to democracy if the election were to be decided by those who fail to vote, rather than by those who come out to vote for or against one of the two major candidates.

Alan M. Dershowitz

Shiloh Musings: Hillary, Your “Deplorable” Comment May Lose You The Election!

Monday, September 12th, 2016

Hillary Clinton: Half of Trump Supporters Belong in ‘Basket of Deplorables’
Hillary Clinton urged supporters late Friday not to be complacent about Donald Trump’s chances of winning the election, saying half of his backers were “desperate for change” but the other half belonged in a “basket of deplorables.”
Appearing at an LGBT gala fundraiser where Barbra Streisand performed, Clinton said many of the GOP candidate’s voters were “racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic, you name it.”

Israel’s Labor Party once made that mistake. They referred to the Likud’s Menachem Begin supporters as “riff raff,” and all it did was increase Likud support in the Israeli voting public and cause long term damage to itself. Today, the Likud is still in power and the Labor party, even after a major rebranding and then name change is smaller than ever.

Hillary, I hate to break it to you, but when you’re running for office you are supposed to try to convince those who support your opponent to change camps and support you, not insult them and turn them away. You’re just proving how unsuitable you are to lead a country, any country.

Batya Medad

The Many Faces Of Election Season 2016

Wednesday, August 31st, 2016

Election season is all about unity. It is a time when all Americans, regardless of race, gender, or religion, gather to vote for individuals who will best represent their communities. Some of the candidates running for office are elected officials we’ve known for years. These politicians have become household names, making us feel both comfortable and safe. Then there are the candidates who come from nowhere, the candidates who reignite sparks of hope in all of our hearts, and make us believe that change is possible.

The election season in Brooklyn is no different. As a borough with one of the most eclectic mixes of ethnicities in all of America, voting for representatives is very important to its inhabitants. The parents of many of the Italian-Americans, Asian-Americans, Russian-Americans, Jewish-Americans, and African-Americans that will be voting in the Brooklyn polls were once immigrants, making voting incredibly symbolic. Many of the candidates themselves stem from diverse backgrounds, having parents who emigrated from all over the world. Brooklyn is a melting pot, and its elections prove it. Most of the candidates in the Brooklyn elections run to help their communities and its people in unprecedented ways. This is the American dream, and they have grabbed it by its horns.

Olanike Alabi

Olanike Alabi

“I have always been one who believed that politics is a vehicle to make a difference in the lives of people,” State Committeewoman Olanike Alabi told Patch.com. Alabi is running for reelection for State Committewoman/District Leader of the 57th Assembly District, which includes the neighborhoods of Clinton Hill, Fort Greene, Crown Heights, Bed-Stuy, and parts of Prospect Heights. She is running against two opponents in the upcoming September 13th Democratic primary – male Democratic District Leader Walter Mosely and former State Department of Education official Martine Guerrier.

Alabi, the daughter of Nigerian immigrants, has worked really hard on behalf of her community. She is a pioneer in social justice reform and is a strong advocate for the labor movement. She gives back whenever she can. When she isn’t in the office you can find her volunteering at the Clinton Hill Brooklyn Public Library branch or at Teen Lift – a program serving inner city youth, by offering tutoring and assistance with college.

In 2006 Alabi was elected as the Democratic State Committeewoman of the 57th Assembly District. Ever since the election she has taken charge and instituted change. She has organized annual community food drives, has worked with spiritual leaders to assist citizens, and has funded legal clinics. Due to her incredible work she has received endorsements from New York City Public Advocate Letitia James, U.S. Representative Yvette Clarke, State Senator Jesse Hamilton, and many more prominent individuals. Alabi promises that if reelected she will go the extra mile to help her community’s elders and youth.

Dilia Schack

Dilia Schack

Not too far from the 57th Assembly District, Dilia Schack is perfecting her campaign for reelection for State Committeewoman/District Leader of the 46th Assembly District, which includes sections of Sea Gate, Fort Hamilton, Bath Beach, and Bay Ridge.

Schack is running against Coney Island community activist, Bigette Purvis, who will most likely be tough competition, even for a seasoned and well-known politician like Schack. Assemblywoman Pamela Harris has put her support fully behind Schack.

Schack recently lost her husband, Justice Arthur Schack, who was a renowned and beloved New York State Supreme Court Justice. Even though she is mourning the passing of her husband of 42 years, she is willing to set aside her emotional state to help her community’s constituents.

What makes a great politician lies in his/her dedication to institute change, and Charles Ragusa, State Committeeman/District Leader of the 47th Assembly District, says that he’s been changing his community for more than 50 years. Ragusa is once again running for reelection for a position which he was first elected to in 1982. However, Chinese-American Billy Thai might upend his reign.

Charles Ragusa

Charles Ragusa

Ragusa has been in the game for a long time, and recently he has proposed a plan to utilize Calvert Vaux Park, Kaiser Park, Marine Park and Jamaica Park for field biology programs. He says this would create jobs and educational opportunities for students. Ragusa told the Bensonhurst Bean, “Ecotourism provides a significant portion of the economy of other states, for example, Alaska, as well as for the nation of Costa Rica. New York City is sitting on top of a financial and educational bonanza that is literally at our doorstep.”

Linda Minucci

Linda Minucci

Linda Minucci, State Committeewoman/ District Leader of the 50th Assembly District, is working hard to hold on to her seat in the district leader position against Emily Gallagher, 32.

Minucci has held the position in the district, which includes sections of Williamsburg and Greenpoint, since 1984. Minucci has advocated for district subway riders and has battled against homeless shelters in Greenpoint Hospital. Minucci has many supporters in the district as evidence by her continued success in elections.

Molly Meisels

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