US POLITICS 101
THE NATION: On January 19, GOP Senate Leader Mitch McConnell, referencing the 1/6 Capitol Hill insurrection said. “The mob was fed lies by Mr. Trump to overturn the election based on bogus claims of voter fraud. McConnell said privately that he believes that Trump committed impeachable offenses. Why this epiphany on the eve of Senate hearings from the House which charged Trump on “incitement of insurrection?” Is McConnell ready to vote to convict Trump? Is he signaling to GOP Senators, 17 of who must vote with Democrats, that it’s okay to vote for a Trump conviction? Is it the Corporate threat to freeze monies to the GOP after 1/6? The videos of the 1/6 siege, most of which indicated a planned coup? Or all of the above?
Jaime Harrison, 44, Democratic Senate hopeful who ran unsuccessfully against incumbent US Senator Lindsey Graham has a new job. A rising star in the Democratic Party, he shattered fundraising figures in SC, fetching more than 130 million for his 2020 campaign coffers. He is President Biden’s pick to Chair the National Democratic Committee, succeeding Tom Perez Where does Perez land? DNC Chairs are usually identified for Cabinet posts.
Civil Rights Lawyer Kristen Clarke, 45, is President Biden’s choice for Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division of the US Justice Department. Her credentials are peerless. A Howard Law School alum, she headed the Civil Rights Bureau for NYS Attorney General Eric Schneiderman. Other employers include the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, and the US Justice Department. Racial justice has been the centerpiece of her career path.
GEORGIA: Last November, the state flipped to blue for Democrats, presidential hopeful Joe Biden and for US Senate hopefuls, Messrs Warnock and Ossoff. Black lawyers did well and scored victories in District Attorney races like Brooklyn-born New Yorker Shalena Cook Jones, Chatham County DA; Fani Willis, Fulton County D.A who wants to prosecute Trump for his call to GA Secretary of State Raffensperger to alter 11/3 elections results; Jared Williams, Augusta DA; and Anita Howard, Macon-Bibb DA
NEW YORK: New Yorkers are excited about the local political races – Mayor, Public Advocate, NYC Council, Comptroller, Borough Presidents, District Attorneys and more. At last count, there were 35 contenders for the Mayoral race. About a dozen attended the Martin Luther King Holiday celebration hosted by Rev. Al Sharpton’s, National Action Network in Harlem. Mayoral hopefuls who attended include Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer; Attorney Maya Wiley, business titan Ray McGuire, nonprofit exec Dianne Morales, Asian American businessman Andrew Yang, 2020 Presidential hopeful; Kathryn Garcia; Loree Sutton, business exec Zach Iscol. The MLK event gets the lion’s share of that holiday’s mainstream media coverage. Names and pictures were in the NY Times, Daily News and NY Post. Those attendees will probably be the group that makes the NY1 TV Errol Louis moderated Mayoral debate. Other Democrat grandees in attendance at the MLK event included Charlie Rangel, Mayor de Blasio, Chuck Schumer and Rep. Carolyn Maloney.
On mayor’s race, mudslinging has begun. The victim is banking titan Ray McGuire who has raised $5 million for his campaign in three months. He is getting low grades from progressive because he helped the Koch Brothers of Koch Industries acquire Georgia-Pacific and helped broker the recent Koch acquisition of InFor, a software company, which was run by Charles Phillips as CEO/Chair. Phillips and Valerie Jarrett are McGuire’s campaign co-chairs. Why is he an ogre. He was an investment banker. He was Citibank Chair who advised many big businesses like Time Warner Cable, Conoco Phillips acquisition of Burlington Industries. True the Koch’s are renown for financing conservative; but McGuire did nothing wrong.
New York Republicans, normally averse to Democratic primaries, are trying something new this year. Presuming that the Dem primary determines November outcomes, the Republicans have been instructed to re-register as a Democrat before the primary so that they can influence who runs/wins probably wins in November. Good reasoning. This would imply that the candidates have to cast a wider net with their messaging.
NYC COUNCIL: The New York City Council will have 34 open seats. It is like a beauty pageant and contestants are coming out of the wood work. In Manhattan’s Council district 9, which spans most of Central Harlem, two men have tossed their hat into am already crowded field of contenders ring. They are businessman, youth counselor/coach William (Billy) Council and educator, preservationist, and community advocate Dr. Keith Taylor. Councilman Bill Perkins, who is not term limited, represents Council district 9.
Then there is a new feature RANKED VOTING on NY ballots, maligned by electeds and voters alike. Ballots are to be cast for candidates in order of importance to the voter. Voter must assign a number to each candidates name. It’s easy math until you confront it.
NYS SENATE: The following is a list of NYS Senate Chairmanship assignments, which highlights members of color: Brian Benjamin, Budget and Revenues, and NYC Comptroller contender; Freshman senator from Brooklyn Jabari Brisport, Children & Families. He is also on the Housing Committee, which real estate developers lament; Leroy Comrie: Corporations, Authorities and Commissions; Robert Johnson, Cities 1; John Liu, NYC Education; Zellnor Myrie, Elections; Kevin Parker, Energy and Telecommunications, and NYC Comptroller contender; James Sanders, Jr, Banks; Jessica Ramos, Labor; Lewis Sepulveda, Crime and Correction; Jose Serrano, Cultural Affairs, Tourism, Parks and Recreation; and Democratic Senate Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Rules. Senate has a super majority and with the Assembly majority can override a Gubernatorial veto.
A Harlem-based brand/media consultant, Victoria is reachable at email@example.com