Special Series: New York’s Mayoral Race

Councilwoman Melissa Mark-Viverito who represents East Harlem and part of the Bronx, a hugely Latino sector of the city, is one. On a recent campaign stomp in El Barrio with de Blasio, whom she has endorsed, she blasted Weiner and Elliot Spitzer, the disgraced former governor running for city comptroller. “People are cynical about politicians and elections in general, the sexual scandals of Weiner and Spitzer don’t help,” she said.

Mark-Viverito, who is herself running for reelection, explained that there are many important issues at stake in this mayoral election that are important to Latino families--in particular she noted, the huge income gap between rich and poor– the largest in any city in the country that have to be addressed. According to a recent report by the Furman Center, the gap between the have and the have-nots in New York City is compares to those in two African nations, Sierra Leone and Namibia.

“The tale of two cites that de Blasio is courageously talking about must be addressed,” the democratic councilwoman explained: Affordable housing for working class residents who are being pushed out of neighborhood by developers who are seen too close to the billionaire mayor, failing public schools, stop and frisk policing practices that unfairly target young Black and Latino men, the creation of jobs, paid sick leave for employees who work in small businesses, affordable health care and better city services, among many others.

“Twelve years of a billionaire mayor out of touch with the everyday working man and woman has left families in our cities vulnerable,” she explained. “The next mayor has to be courageous and have a visionary plan that doesn’t leave out Latinos,” she said.