Municipal Government

Council Speaker Joins Espaillat on Campaign Trail

Mark-Viverito with Espaillat in East Harlem senior center.

Mark-Viverito with Espaillat in an East Harlem senior center.

March 3, 2014
By Marc Bussanich 

New York, NY—Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito joined State Senator Adriano Espaillat at the Leonard Covello Senior Center in East Harlem on Friday to present the center’s renovation and to support the state senator as he tries again to unseat Congressman Charles Rangel to represent the 13th District. Video

The senator was asked what distinguishes him from the long-term Harlem Congressman. Espaillat said while the race to win the Democratic primary on June 24 is in the early stages, the differences will become apparent as the race progresses. 

“There’ll be plenty of time to draw our differences. I think there are very distinct differences between the both of us, but at this moment I’m just happy to be here with the speaker and meeting with the seniors,” said Espaillat.

The senator announced his candidacy on Thursday in Washington Heights while joined by Councilmembers Mark Levine and Ydannis Rodriguez.

Espaillat lost in 2012 to Rangel by about 1,000 votes even though the district was redrawn earlier in the year to include sections of the Bronx and more Hispanic voters. Should he prevail this time, Espaillat would become the first Dominican-American member of Congress.

Mark-Viverito backed Rangel in 2012 when she was a councilmember. She was asked why she’s backing the state senator this year.

“I make decisions based on what I believe is in the best interest of my constituency. I represent and live in this community, and so it’s not easy decisions that are made.”

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March 1, 2014

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