To the editor:
(re: “Lora not ready to give up, but hopes dim,” July 1)
The Riverdale Press reports that several of the candidates running in June’s Democratic primary — including me — chose not to attack incumbent city councilman Eric Dinowitz’s record during the campaign.
A quick review of my campaign’s actions would have shown the opposite was, in fact, true. From Day One, my focus was on giving our community a real choice, contrasting my background and experience with those of Mr. Dinowitz, and winning the election.
In the pages of The Press, I spoke out against Eric’s past support for the Independent Democratic Conference. I also criticized Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz’s efforts to engineer a special election during a pandemic in order to help Eric, his son, get elected.
Press readers should also know that I was the only candidate running in last month’s election to actually spend campaign funds to attack Eric Dinowitz’s record. My campaign invested heavily in mailers to thousands of voters explaining how the Dinowitz family has repeatedly put their interests before the interests of our community. We also spent significant funds on Facebook ads denouncing the outside money that helped Eric Dinowitz get elected.
It’s important to highlight these efforts because issuing such “negative” ads is a potentially risky strategy that some believe can actually backfire on a candidate, hurting their chances. Nevertheless, I knew it was important to remind voters of how Eric and Jeffrey Dinowitz work in tandem to undermine our democracy, as I was willing to take that risk.
For anyone to suggest that I was soft on Mr. Dinowitz does not line up with the facts.
In your story, fellow candidate Mino Lora stated that the candidates “should have consolidated” our efforts to help defeat the Dinowitz family. Many of us did work together, such as when Dan Padernacht, Marcos Sierra and I joined in speaking out on Eric Dinowitz’s use of taxpayer money on mailers that went out 10 days before the election.
For us, this was another clear abuse of power by the Dinowitz family.
Going forward, our efforts continue. The Bronx machine will again fight tooth and nail to re-elect Jeffrey Dinowitz next year, and Eric Dinowitz in 2023. Neither of these politicians has overwhelming support in our community, as the recent election results show. If anything was made clear from this year’s city council races, it’s that the Dinowitz Dynasty is beatable.
But those who want to bring real change to our community must work together to make that happen.