Treyger picks up key endorsements in district leader race
Scissura among leaders backing council member’s bid
With a little more than a month to go before the Democratic Primary, the bitter race between Mark Treyger and Chris McCreight for Democratic district leader of the 46th Assembly District entered a new phase as Treyger unveiled a slew of endorsements from business, civic and religious leaders, including Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Carlo Scissura.
“It has been my pleasure to know and work with Councilmember Treyger for many years, and I believe he would make a terrific district leader,” Scissura told the Brooklyn Eagle. “Mark has been an incredibly effective representative and advocate for Southern Brooklyn. The residents and businesses of the 46th Assembly District would be very lucky to have him as their district leader, and I’m proud to endorse him.”
Scissura’s endorsement is bound to bring added attention to the already hot race between Treyger, the City Councilmember representing Coney Island, Gravesend and parts of Bensonhurst, and McCreight, a political strategist from Bay Ridge who has helped numerous Democratic candidates win public office in he past.
The 46th Assembly District covers the neighborhoods of Bay Ridge, Coney Island, Dyker Heights, Fort Hamilton, Gravesend, Seagate and West Brighton.
A district leader is an unpaid political party official who recruits candidates to run for public office, collects signatures on nominating petitions to get the candidates on the ballot and works to promote a party’s agenda at the grassroots level.
In New York state, each of the major political parties has a male and a female district leader.
The district leaders are also known as state committeepersons, since they serve on the party’s state committee.
On Wednesday, Treyger announced that 33 activists and advocates had endorsed his candidacy.
In addition to Scissura, the names included Marvin Reiskin, former UFT chairman for School District 20; Cody McCone, a Bay Ridge civic activist; Lauretta Brunfeld, president the Coney Island Houses Tenants Association; and Boris Lerman, president of the American Association of Holocaust Survivors of the former Soviet Union.
“I am overwhelmed by this outpouring of support,” Treyger said in a statement. “These community leaders are the backbone of our neighborhoods, leading the charge to improve our schools, ensure safe, quality housing and advocating for critical social services. I look forward to working with them to help strengthen our communities and elect strong leaders to continue moving Southern Brooklyn forward.”
But McCreight also has powerful allies in his corner, including Councilmember Vincent Gentile (D-Bay Ridge-Dyker Heights-Bensonhurst), who endorsed him last month, and Justin Brannan, founder of the Bay Ridge Democrats Club. McCreight is also a co-founder of the club.
McCreight and Gentile are longtime allies. McCreight served as Gentile’s campaign manager in his last council race in 2013.
“Hardworking middle class families from Coney Island to Bay Ridge deserve a district leader that works as hard as they do every day. One of the main responsibilities of a district leader is to help elect Democrats and Chris has been doing that for years without the title,” Gentile said in his endorsement announcement.
“Nobody in Southern Brooklyn has worked harder to help elect Democrats like myself than Chris McCreight,” Gentile added.
The Democratic Primary is Sept. 13.
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