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Wednesday, September 17, 2014
POLITICAL ARENA

A big decision

By Adam Wisnieski
Posted
MARISOL DíAZ/THE RIVERDALE PRESS
State Sen. Gustavo Rivera listens to Peter Nuñez at the Kingsbridge Armory on Saturday, after hundreds of Bronxites were informed that the fuel truck they waited hours for was not coming.

While presidential candidates had to decide if they were going to suspend their campaigns because of Hurricane Sandy, local pols also had a big decision to make as well.

Community Board 8’s Nicole Stent worked overtime sending out daily updates to the community. Mr. Dinowitz checked on constituents without power and said he worked on getting answers out of ConEd and letting people know about an election site change.

State Sen. Gustavo Rivera was berated on the street by Bronxites who showed up to the Kingsbridge Armory for gas promised by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. 

And other Bronx politicians left the state.

Out of town 

Councilman Oliver Koppell was in Virginia from Nov. 2 through Election Day, also campaigning for Mr. Obama.

He said he’d been on conference calls with ConEd to check on the power situation and that he was at his office every day last week (though he did not return a Press inquiry into which local traffic lights were out).

“I was in my district office every day. We were pushing ConEd, Verizon … we’re doing what we can,” Mr. Koppell said.

But Mr. Koppell was in Norfolk, Va. Monday afternoon. 

“New York’s not a swing state … I thought I would try to do what I could to re-elect Obama,” he said.

We asked if he thought it was the right time to leave while much of the state and large swaths of his district were still in disarray.

“I don’t think that my not being there after Friday made any difference,” he said.

Mr. Koppell’s office has been directing constituents to gas stations that Hess has been delivering to and said he plans to host a blood drive at Ethical Culture Fieldston. 

His office said staffers have been pressuring ConEd to restore power to many local buildings, including at 2501 Palisade Ave., which had its water shut off because of problems with losing power to its sewage tanks.

Below: What some other elected officials were doing over the last hectic week.

Whose advocate? 

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. was in Florida over the weekend, campaigning “at the behest of the president,” according to spokesman John DeSio.

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