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Will Mail-in Ballots Change the Fate of Eliot Engel?

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bowman engel ny16 race primary

“Eliot Engel used to say he was a thorn in the side of (Republican President) Donald Trump,” Jamaal Bowman, the democratic challenger to Rep. Eliot Engel, told supporters on Tuesday. “But you know what Donald Trump is more afraid of than anything else? A Black man with power. That is what Donald Trump is afraid of,” Bowman added.

As of early Wednesday morning, Bowman, 44, was leading Engel, the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, by 59.48 percent to 35.31 percent, the New York state elections board said, with 627 of 732 election precincts reporting. New York counties didn’t release any mail ballot data Tuesday, which could account for more than half the vote. Counties have until July 1 to start releasing the results of mail ballots.

“If the results continue to bear out, and we get to Congress, it will be our job to hold Donald Trump accountable and to hold every politician accountable that continues to be beholden to corporate interests … and is not fighting for the poor and the working class in our country,” said Bowman in his primary night speech.

“AOC and Bowman are also decades younger than the people they want(ed) to replace (Bowman is 44, Engel is 73). And they framed their candidacies as part of larger movements to push the Democratic Party in a more progressive direction,” said The New York Times’ Azi Paybarah in a CNN digital interview.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., openly supported Bowman, the Rep. Eliot Engel’s primary challenger in early June. She called Bowman, who is African-American, “a profound community leader.”

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Elections

New York City Dems Push Law to Allow 800,000 Non-Citizens to Vote in Municipal Elections

The New York City Council will vote on December 9 on a law to allow green-card holders and residents with work permits to vote in municipal elections

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New York’s Democratic party is battling over the constitutionality of voter laws. On December 9, the New York City Council will vote on a law to allow green-card holders and residents with work permits to vote in municipal elections.

“Around 808,000 New York City residents who have work permits or are lawful permanent residents would be eligible to vote under the legislation, which has the support of 34 of 51 council members, a veto-proof majority” reports Fox News.

“It’s important for the Democratic Party to look at New York City and see that when voting rights are being attacked, we are expanding voter participation,” Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez, a sponsor of the bill and Democrat who represents the Washington Heights neighborhood of Manhattan, told the New York Times. Rodriguez immigrated from the Dominican Republic and became a U.S. citizen in 2000.

Fox News reports:

Laura Wood, Chief Democracy Officer for the mayor’s office, said at a hearing on the bill in September that the law could violate the New York State Constitution, which states that voters must be U.S. citizens age 18 or older.

Mayor Bill de Blasio indicated he could veto the bill following the September hearing.
“We’ve done everything that we could possibly get our hands on to help immigrant New Yorkers—including undocumented folks—but…I don’t believe it is legal,” de Blasio told WNYC radio at the time.

Mayor-elect Eric Adams, however, submitted testimony to the September hearing in favor of the bill. “In a democracy, nothing is more fundamental than the right to vote and to say who represents you and your community in elected office…Currently, almost one million New Yorkers are denied this foundational right.”

The legislation was first introduced two years ago, but had not yet gained traction due to the legal concerns.

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