Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Politicos benefit from Friends in High Places El Diario NY


POR: Roberto Pérez | 06/27/2012 | El Diario

The old adage of "tell me who your friends are and I'll tell you who you are" should be changed in the political game to: Tell me who your friends are and I'll tell you how much power and influence you have.

I was reviewing the FEC filings of some the congressional candidates and found a long list of famous and influential people who have tried to help politicians either stay in power or attain more power.

Congressman Charles Rangel has received contributions from several celebrities and renowed personalities. In 2011, for example, boxing promoter Don King donated $ 2,500, the owner of the newly crowned NBA champions Miami Heat Micky Arison contributed $ 2.000, Baltimore Orioles team owner Peter Angelos gave him another $ 2,000. Other familiar figures that appear on his list of benefactors are music producer Quincy Jones , with $ 1.000 in 2001, poet Maya Angelou also with $ 1.000 in 2001. And the list continues to include CEO of JP Morgan Chase Jamie Dimon , and former chief of staff to President Obama Bill Daley , ex Governors Mario Cuomo and David Paterson and former mayor David Dinkins , among many others - 40 years in power makes you a lot of important friends.

For his part, State Senator Adriano Espaillat received $ 2,500 from designer Oscar De La Renta and $ 1.250 from consultant Joe Wiscovitch , and another $ 1,000 from State Senator Gustavo Rivera . Espaillat also received $ 1,500 from Vince Morgan , who decided not to run in the 13th CD and supported Espaillat.

Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez received $ 2,000 in 2011 from Ambassador to El Salvador Mari Carmen Aponte and $ 1,000 this year from former Bronx Borough President Fernando Ferrer . She also received $ 1,000 from consultant Tonio Burgos .

Velazquez's opponent, Councilman Erik Dilan , meanwhile, received $ 1.200 from former NY Mets first baseman and now real estate developer Maurice Vaughn .

Políticos con amigos poderosos - eldiariony.com

Políticos con amigos poderosos - eldiariony.com

POR: Roberto Pérez | 06/27/2012 | El Diario

El viejo dicho de "dime con quién andas y te diré quién eres" debería cambiarse para uso político a: Dime con quién andas y te diré cuánto poder e influencia tienes.

Estuve revisando los récords financieros de algunos candidatos congresionales y encontré una larga lista de personas famosas e influyentes que han tratado de ayudar a políticos que están en el poder, o que aspiran llegar al poder.

El congresista Charles Rangel ha recibido contribuciones de varias personalidades de los deportes. En 2011, por ejemplo, el promotor de boxeo Don King le donó $2,500, el dueño del equipo Miami Heat Micky Arison le concedió $2,000; y el dueño del equipo Baltimore Orioles, Peter Angelos le regaló otros $2,000. Otras figuras conocidas que aparecen en su lista de benefactores son el productor musical Quincy Jones , con $1,000 en 2001, la poeta Maya Angelou con $1,000 también en 2001. Y así la lista continúa para incluir al CEO de JP Morgan Chase Jaime Dimon, el exjefe de personal del Presidente Obama Bill Daley, y políticos como los exgobernadores Mario Cuomo y David Paterson y el exalcalde David Dinkins, entre muchos otros – 40 años en el poder es suficiente tiempo para hacer bastantes amigos importantes.

Por su lado, el senador estatal Adriano Espaillat recibió este año $2,500 del diseñador Oscar De La Renta y $1,250 del consultor Joe Wiscovitch, y otros $1,000 del senador estatal Gustavo Rivera. Espaillat también recibió $1,500 de Vince Morgan, quien se retiró de la contienda por el Distrito 13 y lo apoyó.

La congresista Nydia Velázquez recibió $2,000 en 2011 de la embajadora de El Salvador Mari Carmen Aponte y $1,000 este año del expresidente de El Bronx Fernando Ferrer. También recibió $1,000 del consultor Tonio Burgos.

El contrincante de Velázquez, el concejal Erik Dilán, por su parte, recibió $1,200 del expelotero de los NY Mets y ahora desarrollador inmobiliario Maurice Vaughn.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Cuomo and the NY Dream Act El Diario NY



Roberto Perez | 06/20/2012 | El Diario

I found it strange that Governor Andrew Cuomo, who tends to be liberal on social issues and conservative on fiscal matters, is not publicly supporting the New York state DREAM Act.

I called several sources in Albany to see what they thought, and all agreed that there are serious problems with how the bill is written and questioned the constitutionality of the legislation. The other point is that the governor simply does not have the votes necessary to get it passed.

The Dream Fund, proposed by Assemblyman Francisco Moya, is the more likely of the two bills to be passed, but many doubt that it will be addressed in this legislative session.

One question I asked one of my sources is why Cuomo, who has presidential ambitions and fought so hard for the passage of marriage equality seems so dismissive when it comes to the Dream Act and here's what my source told me:

The governor's advisers want him to stay away from the issue and prefer to let it play out in Washington for fear that it could harm his image. The second reason is practical. The members of the LGBT community, who benefited from the adoption of the Marriage Equality, are voters and have shown their appreciation to the Governor by contributing heavily to the coffers of the Cuomo campaign and on the other hand, those who are affected by the Dream Act are not voters and have no money. That's it.

***

The race to replace Assemblyman Guillermo Linares in the 72nd AD, is shaping up once again to be a battle between state Sen. Adriano Espaillat and Linares. My sources tell me that Espaillat recommended that District Leader Manny De Los Santos not run for the seat, which leads me to believe that Espaillat will support Gabriela Rosa against Mayra Linares .


Cuomo y el NY Dream Act - eldiariony.com



Cuomo y el NY Dream Act - eldiariony.com

Roberto Perez | 06/20/2012 | El Diario

Encontré muy extraño que el gobernador Andrew Cuomo, quien tiende a ser liberal en los temas sociales y conservador en materia fiscal, no saliera en apoyo del Dream Act del estado de Nueva York.

Llamé a varias fuentes en Albany para saber qué pensaban, y todos coincidieron en que creer que existen problemas con la forma en que el proyecto está escrito y cuestionaron la constitucionalidad de la legislación. El otro punto es que el gobernador simplemente no tiene los votos a favor necesarios para que sea aprobada dicha legislación.

El proyecto de ley Dream Fund, propuesto por el asambleísta Francisco Moya, es el más probable de ser aprobado entre los dos proyectos de ley, aunque muchos dudan que se aborde en esta sesión legislativa.

Una de las preguntas que plantee a una de mis fuentes es por qué Cuomo, que tiene ambiciones presidenciales, lucha por temas de derechos civiles como la igualdad en el matrimonio y sin embargo parece tan despectivo sobre un tema como el Dream Act. Y esto fue lo que mi fuente me dijo:

Los asesores del gobernador quieren que se mantenga alejado del tema y que deje que lo decidan en Washington por temor a que podría perjudicar su imagen. La segunda razón es práctica. Los miembros de la comunidad LGBT -que se beneficiaron de la aprobación de la Igualdad Matrimonial- son votantes y demostraron su agradecimiento al gobernador contribuyendo fuertemente a las arcas de la campaña de Cuomo y por otro lado, los que se ven afectados por el Dream Act no son votantes y no tienen dinero. Eso es todo.

* * *

La carrera para reemplazar al asambleísta Guillermo Linares en el Distrito 72, se perfila una vez más a ser una batalla entre el senador estatal Adriano Espaillat y Linares. Mis fuentes dijeron que Espaillat recomendó al líder distrital Manny De Los Santos que no se postulara para el escaño, lo que me lleva a creer que Espaillat respaldará a Gabriela Rosa en contra de Mayra Linares.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Latinos Preparing for Public Office El Diario NY



Roberto Perez | 06/13/2012 | El Diario

Etienne David Adorno, a member of Councilman Robert Jackson's staff, who is currently on leave, thinks its time for a change in the 38th AD and has decided to run against Queens Assemblyman Mike Miller. District 38 is 50.22% Latino and 47.40% of them are of voting age.

Adorno, who is Puerto Rican, says it is time that the district be represented by someone from Woodhaven, the neighborhood that has the greater portion of the district. He faces an uphill battle because he has absolutely no institutional support and according to my sources has received several phone calls urging him not to jump into the fray and was warned to expect retaliation if he does. The only person who has publicly come to his aid is ex-assemblyman Adam Clayton Powell IV, who held a petition briefing for him, and who is also his former boss.

Several Latinos are planning to challenge Assemblyman Eric Stevenson in the Bronx. My sources tell me that Jose Padilla, who has run in the 79th AD in the past, is preparing to jump back into the political arena, and Sigfredo Gonzalez, who
has also run for that seat in the past, is going to challenge Stevenson for the Male District Leader post.

Stevenson might also face a challenge from ex-assemblyman Israel Martinez, who despite being the Male District Leader in the 84th AD represented by Assemblywoman Carmen Arroyo and who plans to defend his position against Carlos Sierra, whom Arroyo supports, also wants to take on Stevenson in the 79th AD.

On the other hand, Bronx community leader Carlos Sierra may not only have to worry about trying to overthrow Israel Martinez for the District Leader position in the 84th, but he must also be on the look out for the Rodriguez brothers, Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez and his brother Carlos.

When the brothers heard that Sierra was supporting Rangel against Espaillat, they sent word to Sierra that as an employee of CUNY, it would be in his best interest to not get involved.

Also, Corey Ortega from the office of Democratic Party and Manhattan County Leader Assemblyman Keith Wright is exploring a possible run for the City Council seat currently held by Robert Jackson.

Latinos se ubican para cargos públicos - eldiariony.com


Latinos se ubican para cargos públicos - eldiariony.com

Roberto Perez | 06/13/2012 | El Diario

Etienne David Adorno, empleado del concejal Robert Jackson, quien actualmente se encuentra en licencia, piensa que tiempo de cambio en el Distrito 38 y ha decidido postularse contra el asambleísta de Queens Mike Miller. El Distrito 38 es 50.22% latino y 47.40% de ellos está en edad de votar.

Adorno, quien es puertorriqueño, dice que es hora que el distrito esté representado por alguien de Woodhaven, el barrio con la mayor porción del distrito. El enfrenta una dura batalla porque no tiene apoyo institucional y, según mis fuentes, ha recibido varias llamadas telefónicas para que suspenda su intento y fue advertido que habrá represalias si no lo hace. La única persona que públicamente ha venido en su ayuda es el exasambleísta Adam Clayton Powell IV, su exjefe.

Varios latinos de El Bronx están planeando desafiar al asambleísta y Líder Masculino de Distrito Eric Stevenson. Mis fuentes aseguran que José Padilla, que ya se ha postulado el D79, se prepara para lanzarse de nuevo al ruedo, y Sigfredo González está pensando retar a Stevenson para el puesto de Líder Masculino. Stevenson también podría enfrentar al exasambleísta Israel Martínez, quien a pesar de que es el Líder Masculino Distrital en el Distrito 84 de la asambleísta Carmen Arroyo y planea defender su puesto contra el Carlos Sierra, a quien apoya Arroyo, también quisiera enfrentar a Stevenson en el Distrito 79.

Por otro lado, el líder comunitario de El Bronx Carlos Sierra no sólo tiene que preocuparse por tratar de derrocar a Israel Martínez por el puesto de Líder Distrital en el D84, sino que tiene que estar al pendiente de los hermanos Rodríguez, el concejal Ydanis Rodríguez y su hermano Carlos. Cuando los hermanos Rodríguez escucharon que Sierra estaba apoyando a Rangel en contra de Espaillat, dijeron que como un empleado de CUNY –sería mejor que Sierra no se involucrara.

También, Corey Ortega -de la oficina del líder del Partido Demócrata del condado de Manhattan y el Estado de Nueva York, asambleísta Keith Wright- está explorando la posibilidad de lanzarse para el Concejo Municipal por el asiento que actualmente ocupa Robert Jackson.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Jessica Lappin on THE PEREZ NOTES


I had the opportunity to interview, Councilwoman Jessica Lappin. Here are some of Jessica's views, on the issues of the day. Below the quotes, is the audio of the interview.

Mayor Bloomberg 16oz soda's

"I do think its an overreach. I think it's great that it got a conversation going on the subject. I personally drink soda very rarely. I don't keep it in the house. I don't let my children drink it unless, it's a special occasion, but I think the emphasis really should be on educating people, on teaching them healthy eating habits, and not punishing them for not knowing, what they should, and shouldn't be eating. I think it's interesting, that's it's also, I saw today today sparked a discussion about exercise, exercise in our public schools. I don't think there is enough of that, and you know, those are the things, we should be talking about changing as well as teaching people, giving them access to healthy food, encouraging them to exercise, that's how over the long term we're gonna attack these major health problems."

Teacher Evaluations

"I don't understand why it's necessary for everyone to view one teachers reviews, as a parent of course, I want to know what my sons teacher, how they have been ranked and how they're performing in the class room, because that directly impacts my child, but I don't really think it's all that relevant, or helpful, or necessary for everyone across the city, to see that persons performance and readings. We don't do that for other public officials, we don't that for firemen, we don't do that for policemen, why should we do that for teachers, so I don't think that makes a whole lot of sense."

Manhattan BP

"I don't think it's a secret that if the current Borough President doesn't run for reelection next year, that I would love to run for Borough President, so we'll see if that happens."

Stop and Frisk

"It needs to be reformed dramatically."


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

El voto latino este 26 de junio - eldiariony.com



El voto latino este 26 de junio - eldiariony.com

POR: Roberto Pérez | 06/06/2012 | El Diario

El 26 de junio en la ciudad habrá cuatro primarias congresionales en las que el voto latino jugará un papel importante.

Los distritos en juego son: el 13 donde se enfrentan el congresista Charles Rangel, el senador estatal Adriano Espaillat, Clyde Williams, Joyce Johnson y Craig Schley. El Distrito 6, en donde compiten Rory Lancman, la asambleísta Grace Meng, y la concejal Elizabeth Crowley. El 7, donde la congresista Nydia Velázquez es retada por el concejal Erik Dilan, y el distrito 8 donde el concejal Charles Barron y el asambleísta Hakeem Jeffries tratán de desbancar al congresista Ed Towns.

Contacté a Jerry Skurnik, de Prime New York, un experto local en estadísticas electorales, para que me dijera cuántos hispanos han votado en esas áreas en años recientes. Skurnik sacó la cuenta de cuantos latinos demócratas votaron al menos una vez en una primaria de septiembre en los últimos cuatro años, y esto fue lo que encontró:

Distrito 6: 51,537 votantes – 5,669 personas con apellidos latinos, ó 11%

Distrito 7: 54,813 votantes – 17,413 personas con apellidos latinos, ó 32%

Distrito 8: 61,118 votantes – 5,461 personas con apellidos latinos, ó 9%

Distrito 13: 70,126 votantes – 27,548 personas con apellidos latinos, ó 39%

Aunque la cuenta es imperfecta, porque los apellidos no dan certeza de la etnicidad de las personas, y algunos latinos no tienen apellidos hispanos, como Marc Anthony o Bernie Williams, por ejemplo, los números dan cierta idea del peso del voto latino en estas contiendas. La data tampoco puede predecir confiablemente cuántos de estos votantes de primarias en septiembre saldrán a votar en esta atípica elección veraniega. Además, en los últimos cuatro años no ha habido muchos candidatos hispanos. Si a la cuenta se añadiesen las primarias de 2001, cuando corrió Fernando Ferrer, el porcentaje sería más alto.

Pero no parece haber duda de que el voto latino es obviamente crucial en los distritos 7 y 13. En los otros dos distritos, eso dependerá de cuán cerrada sea la elección.

Will Latinos Turn Out on June 26th? El Diario NY



POR: Roberto Pérez | 06/06/2012 | El Diario

On June 26th in the city there will be four democratic congressional primaries in which the Latino vote will play an important role.

The districts in play are, the 13th in which Congressman Charles Rangel, will face State Senator Adriano Espaillat, Clyde Williams, Joyce Johnson and Craig Schley. The 6th, where Assemblyman Rory Lancman will compete, with Assemblywoman Grace Meng, and Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley. The 7th, where Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez is being challenged by Councilman Erik Dilan, and District 8 where City Councilman Charles Barron and Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries are battling to replace Congressman Ed Towns.

I contacted Jerry Skurnik of Prime New York, to tell me how many Hispanics voted in these areas in recent years. Skurnik took count of how many Latino Democrats voted at least once in a September primary in the last four years, and this is what he found:

I ran the following count for the 4 New Congressional Districts. Democrats who voted in at least 1 Sept. Primary. In the last 4 years.
These are the numbers I got -

6 CD 51,537 voters-5,669 Spanish surnamed 11%

7 CD 54,813 voters-17,413 Spanish surnamed 32%

8 CD 61,118 voters-5,461 Spanish surnamed 9%

13 CD 70,126 voters -27,548 Spanish surnamed 39%

Some caveats. Spanish surnamed is based on last names and is not 100% accurate. For example neither Marc Anthony or Bernie Williams would be listed as Spanish surnames I don't expect the turnout for a June Primary to be as high as they were for past September Primaries.

The last 4 years did not have that many Hispanic candidates. If I added the 2001 Primary, the Hispanic percentage would jump because of the presence of Fernando Ferrer.

I think the Latino vote is obviously crucial in the 7 & 13 CD as it is a big number regardless of any of my caveats. In the other 2 districts, it depends on how close the contests are.