The Polls Are Open in New York City

vote_here.jpgIt’s primary day, and when it comes to local elections in New York, that means the next few hours bear more significance than what happens in November. Gotham Gazette has the most comprehensive guide to all the contested primaries in the city. From a livable streets perspective, the three Manhattan races stand out.

In the 64th Assembly district, Paul Newell is riding a wave of endorsements from the three major dailies in his campaign against Speaker Sheldon Silver. Newell and fellow challenger Luke Henry have both taken Silver to task over his handling of the congestion pricing vote in April.

Likewise, in the 25th Senate district (which also includes parts of Brooklyn), challenger Dan Squadron has pounced on 30-year incumbent Martin Connor’s timid stance on pricing. The back-and-forth battle of endorsements — Squadron has his mentor Chuck Schumer and Mayor Bloomberg on his side, Connor has fellow Albany Dems on his — plus Squadron’s prodigious fundraising, have made this one of the most closely watched elections this cycle.

Up in the 72nd Assembly district, incumbent Adriano Espaillat faces a challenge from City Council member Miguel Martinez. Both supported congestion pricing, but Espaillat was one of the plan’s fiercest advocates. Espaillat also supported the traffic-reducing Gansevoort Waste Transfer Station, which, while outside his district, ran against the wishes of prominent Manhattan Assembly members.

There are plenty of other seats at stake where candidates’ views may affect streets and transit. If there’s an election with implications for livable streets in your district, or if you’ve got a story to share from the polls today, tell us all about it in the comments.

Photo: Vidiot/Flickr

  • Go here:

    To find out who you can vote for today.

    Can anyone tell me who’s the best in this race?

    I think it’s the only contest in my area!

  • JT

    “Can anyone tell me who’s the best in this race?”

    George Bush IX or Chiang Kai Shek, they’re both great candidates

  • Even if you don’t have any contested primaries today is a great day to call your Assembly member’s office and let them know that you vote and that you care about issues like congestion pricing. You get more credibility because they know you’re the kind of person who votes every single time and with challengers like Paul Newell shaking things up it lets these incumbents know that they could be next. Accountability– we need more of it.

  • If this article isn’t enough to inspire you in the Squadron/Connor race, then consider that Connor’s most recent “Dear Neighbor” letter included taking credit for standing up to the DOT to block the proposal to open Prince St. to pedestrians on Sundays during the summer.

    Glad that Marty’s all over protecting residents’ right to remain squeezed onto impossibly tight sidewalks so SUV’s can cruise on through.

    Turnouts are light – your vote really counts.

  • Beebop

    Turnout is extraordinary light. Although I have my concerns with Squadron, it is time to throw out pols who aren’t putting up a real fight against traffic. Enough. Goodbye Connor.


Silver Challenger Paul Newell Campaigns on Livable Streets

In what may be a political first, Paul Newell, who is challenging Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver in the 64th District, mentions "livable streets" as one of his three major planks in this campaign clip. Newell and Luke Henry, another Silver challenger, have both voiced support for congestion pricing. The last time Silver faced a challenger […]

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