For Immediate Release
Contact- Lauren Mannerberg, [email protected], 929 553 7702
Good government group backs candidates in races for open Senate seats in all five boroughs
To view Citizens Union’s Voters Directory, click here
New York, N.Y. (August 9, 2022) – Today, Citizens Union announced its preferences in 8 contested primary elections for State Senate. Citizens Union undertook a rigorous evaluation of 19 candidates running for office in all five boroughs. The process had to be adjusted to align with the new court-ordered redistricted maps and the evaluation spanned several months.
“The redrawing of State Senate lines created very different districts with unusually competitive races. Voters should take this opportunity to know who is running to represent them, and where candidates stand on important reform issues. Citizens Union is proud to support these candidates across all five boroughs who are deeply committed to advancing a strong reform agenda in Albany. Given the low turnout of this year’s June primary election, New Yorkers who vote in August will likely have an outsized impact on the results,” said Betsy Gotbaum, executive director of Citizens Union.
Candidates were evaluated based on the following criteria:
- alignment with Citizens Union’s reform agenda, specifically views on ethics, election reform and police accountability;
- ability to advance their agenda once in office;
- knowledge of the needs of their constituents; and
- ability to wage an effective and competitive campaign.
In the Democratic primary for Senate District 33 (Bronx- Van Nest, Riverdale, Fieldston, Spuyten Duyvil, Bedford Park, Fordham, Belmont, Morris Park, Norwood), Citizens Union prefers Gustavo Rivera. Rivera has served in the state Senate since 2011, and currently chairs the Health Committee, the first senator from the Bronx to hold the position. A reformer who highlights ethics and democracy issues in his campaign platform, Rivera sponsored bills to facilitate voting, reduce the corrupting influence of money in politics, restructure the Board of Elections, and ensure accountability for officials who violate the public’s trust. His commitment to reform, independent approach, and legislative track record makes him the best choice in this race.
In the Democratic primary for Senate District 59 (Queens/Brooklyn/Manhattan- Astoria, Queensbridge, Dutch Kills, Long Island City, Hunters Point, Greenpoint, Kips Bay, Tudor City, Gramercy, Stuy-town and Cooper Village), Citizens Union prefers Elizabeth Crowley. A former Council Member from Queens, Crowley’s priorities in this campaign include assistance for small businesses, protecting reproductive rights, and increasing affordable housing. Crowley indicated her support for all of Citizens Union’s reform agenda, including merit-based hiring at boards of elections, campaign funds matching programs, and the creation of a truly independent body to oversee legislators and election bodies in their redistricting processes. Citizens Union believes Crowley is the most qualified candidate in the primary race for this brand-new district, and would be an effective lawmaker in Albany, including on reform issues.
Citizens Union list of August 2022 preferences:
Senate District 33 (Bronx- Van Nest, Riverdale, Fieldston, Spuyten Duyvil, Bedford Park, Fordham, Belmont, Morris Park, Norwood)
- Gustavo Rivera
Senate District 34 (Bronx- Parkchester, Clason Point, Castle Hill, Schuylerville, Throggs Neck, Silver Beach, Edgewater Park, Country Club, Middletown, Morris Park, Pelham, City Island)
- Nathalia Fernandez
Senate District 21 (Brooklyn- Flatbush, East Flatbush, Ditmas Park, Flatlands, Marine Park, Bergen Beach)
- Kevin Parker
Senate District 26 (Brooklyn- DUMBO, Downtown Brooklyn, Brooklyn Heights, parts of Forts Green and Park Slope, Gowanus, Carroll Gardens, Red Hook, South Slope, Sunset Park, Bay Ridge, Fort Hamilton, parts of Dyker Heights, and Governors Island)
- Andrew Gounardes
Senate District 27 (Manhattan- East Village, West Village, Alphabet City, Lower East Side, Financial District, SoHo, Tribeca, Chinatown, FiDi, Battery Park City)
- Brian Kavanagh
Senate District 30 (Manhattan- Harlem, parts of East Harlem, parts of the Upper West Side, Morningside Heights and Hamilton Heights)
- Cordell Cleare
Senate District 59 (Queens/Brooklyn/Manhattan- Astoria, Queensbridge, Dutch Kills, Long Island City, Hunters Point, Greenpoint, Kips Bay, Tudor City, Gramercy, Stuy-town and Cooper Village)
- Elizabeth Crowley
Senate District 23
(Staten Island/Brooklyn- North Shore of Staten Island, Coney Island, Brighton Beach, Manhattan Beach, Fort Hamilton Army Base)
- Jessica Scarcella-Spanton
For follow up, please contact Lauren Mannerberg at Anat Gerstein, Inc. at
[email protected] or 347-361-9983
About Citizens Union
For 125 years, Citizens Union has been a force for transparency, accountability and ethics in New York’s City and State governments. A nonpartisan organization, some of our current initiatives include a new agenda for police accountability, monitoring the City Council’s redistricting process and increasing civic engagement. Learn more at www.citizensunion.org.