EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is an open letter to Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz, Councilman Andrew Cohen, Bronx borough president Ruben Diaz Jr., and district leaders Randi Martos and Eric Dinowitz.
We are writing this open letter to you as elders in the community. Collectively, we have lived 181 years in Riverdale. As your constituents, we know your commitment to advancing progressive Democratic ideals and policies. We know you share our horror at the extremist agenda of Donald Trump’s GOP, and believe you are committed to defending against their attacks on our state’s values.
We can’t say the same of our state senator, Jeffrey Klein.
When we pull the lever for Democrats, we believe that the candidates on that line should function as Democrats. We expect our leaders to act with conviction based on progressive values, not self-interest.
Time and again, Klein has broken faith with us. He created a coalition that allowed a right-wing minority to take control of our state senate. He has traded our Democratic votes for his own personal power and enrichment, and we have seen too much of this behavior to fall for it again.
Enough is enough.
We are therefore distressed that you and the Benjamin Franklin Reform Democratic Club are siding with Jeff Klein.
We implore you to rethink your goals, and if you are unable to support Alessandra Biaggi, then at least do the right thing and remain neutral. If you continue to support Mr. Klein, we think you need to remove the word “Reform” from your club’s title.
With Trump in the White House and extremist Republicans controlling Congress, the stakes are too high to allow Klein to return to the state senate, where history tells us he will continue his reckless collaboration with Trump’s allies.
We sign this letter as long-time Riverdale residents, active members of our community, and in full support of Ms. Biaggi — a person of candor and honesty who will represent our district as a Democrat, with honor.
Dorian Cusick, Angela Gill, Faye Lieman, Evelyn Mutnick, Matilda Rostoker