A bevy of Brooklyn Republicans are boycotting the Nov. 4 convention to select the county party’s next head. Bay Ridge lawyer Ted Ghorra and former assemblyman Arnaldo Ferraro are both vying for the chairmanship, and the upcoming meeting is a court-ordered do-over of last year’s raucous caucus — which a judge recently invalidated.
But a faction backing Ferraro plans to not show up, because members claim the judge’s ruling was wrong.
“I don’t know how many people who are not affiliated or not supporting Ted Ghorra will be there,” said Stephen Maresca, a district leader in the 49th Assembly District who has endorsed Ferraro but is not attending.
Others boycotting include former chairman Craig Eaton, who backed Ferraro last year, and Lucretia Regina-Potter, a Republican district leader in the 46th Assembly District who is challenging Assemblywoman Pamela Harris (D–Coney Island) for her seat.
Ferraro won last year, but a judge invalidated the results, claiming the party’s vote-vetting committee unfairly threw out ballots for Ghorra. Ferraro partisans are planning a legal challenge to the upcoming convention, they said.
The new York State Republican Committee called the convention, and state party chairman Edward Cox will preside over the vote. Allowing the state to oversee in these situations is standard practice, and the committee hopes both sides attend to unify the Brooklyn Republican Party, according to an attorney for the New York State Republican County Committee.
“Our intent is to run a fair meeting. We hope everyone attends,” said Jeff Buley. “We hope both sides take this opportunity to unify, and what we want is one recognized slate of officers to represent the county, not two competing slates.”
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Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D–Midwood), who previously indicated he’d support Donald Trump in the Nov. 8 presidential election, has announced he’s instead writing in House Speaker Paul Ryan.
Hikind discounted fellow Dem Hillary Clinton long ago, because she supported the Iran nuclear deal, but he recently had to dump Trump after the Donald’s poor showing at debates and revelations he has bragged about groping women.
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A 2017 bid for District Attorney by Councilman Vincent Gentile (D–Bay Ridge) is “definitely on the table,” according to a source close to the lawmaker.
The senior legislator spent 11 years as a prosecutor in Queens before beginning his political career.
The rumor mill recently reported that Gentile was angling for a judgeship, but the untimely death of District Attorney Ken Thompson opened the seat to people who may not have challenged the late legal eagle. The councilman declined to comment.
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The city has yet to reinstate two Board of Elections workers suspended after the Democratic voter purge that mucked up the April presidential primary. Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is still investigating, a rep from his office said.