Meeks Replaces Crowley + Sex Work Decrim in the Queens DA Race

Local News

  • Rep. Gregory Meeks (NY-05) was elected to replace former Rep. Joseph Crowley (NY-14) as boss of the Queens County Democratic Party. Meeks, an ally of Crowley and the establishment, has been plagued by corruption allegations of accepting improper gifts and spending frivolously on travel using campaign funds.
  • De Blasio’s 2020 city budget proposal includes hiring freezes and significant funding cut to HPD due to fears of loss in tax revenue.
  • While Governor Cuomo is calling on the State Legislature to include marijuana legalization in this year’s budget, some county executives, including Nassau County’s Laura Curran, have indicated that they would opt out of any statewide law permitting the sale of recreational marijuana.
  • Mayor De Blasio introduced a plan to extend the shoreline of Lower Manhattan into the East River as part of a coastal resiliency strategy. The plan would cost $10 billion and require federal funding. Council Member Margaret Chin (District 1, Lower Manhattan) expressed skepticism that this plan would benefit private real estate developers and destroy waterfront communities.
  • Representative Carolyn Maloney (NY-12) appeared at a rally in opposition to efforts by sex workers and some state lawmakers to decriminalize sex work in New York State. The rally included an openly transphobic group, which Maloney later condemned.
  • Hudson Yards, a massive public land giveaway engineered by the Bloomberg administration, finally opened after a decade of construction. The New York Times excoriated the complex, which almost entirely consists of luxury residences, investment properties, and high-end retail.

Elections

  • Sex work decriminalization has become a prominent issue in the Queens District Attorney race, with DSA-endorsee Tiffany Cában and former prosecutor Jose Nieves voicing the strongest intent to decriminalize amongst the candidates.
  • In These Times highlighted DSA’s organizing around Tiffany Cában’s campaign for Queens DA.
  • Ahead of the expiration of New York’s rent regulation laws, a coalition of progressive and socialist activist groups have threatened to primary the co-chairs of the Democratic Assembly Campaign Committee, Peter Abbate (District 49, Bensonhurst), Joe Lentol (District 50, Greenpoint), and Jeff Dinowitz (District 81, Riverdale), unless they adopt a more pro-tenant and pro-labor agenda.
  • Public Advocate-elect Jumaane Williams has named activist and former Public Advocate candidate Ify Ike the head of his transition team.
  • State Senator Mike Gianaris (District 12, Western Queens) and Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer (District 26, Western Queens), both of whom publicly opposed the Amazon deal in their districts, appeared alongside Elizabeth Warren at her presidential campaign rally in Long Island City last week.

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