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Puerto Rico, Politics and Pushing Forward

Politicos and the powers-that-be are still shaking the Puerto Rican sand out of their shoes, but the period between the election and inauguration has already seen some big storylines in the NYC Speaker’s race

November 9, 2021 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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IN PUBLIC SERVICE (IPS) is a special news service feature offered to share with readers the public announcements sent out by elected public officials. 

As lawmakers and politicos return from the annual Somos el Futuro conference hosted in San Juan, Puerto Rico, the jockeying at annual gathering has already up-ended some conventional wisdom ahead of key events next year. Here are the Eagle’s biggest takeaways from the 2021 Somos el Futuro conference with regards to the race for NYC Council Speaker. 

The Race for NYC Council Speaker

Going into the Somos conference, most close observers of New York politics had narrowed down the field of possible sitting and incoming Councilmembers in the running for Council Speaker to the following – Justin Brannan, Francisco Moya, Carlina Rivera, Adrienne Adams and Diana Ayala. 

Brannan’s razor-thin margin in his own re-election, and the fact that New York City residents and current political landscape signal an appetite for diverse and increasingly female leadership, Brannan’s star slid considerably over the past week. His closeness with Mayor-elect Adams and Brannan’s experience will keep him in the conversation, but following the events of the past week … don’t bet on hearing Speaker Brannan anytime soon. 

Julie Menin’s name was floated and denied by Menin herself before too much could be made of a possible run for Speaker. So, on to the next! 

Given their backgrounds and the district’s they represent, Francisco Moya of Queens and Carlina Rivera of Manhattan were moved into clearer positions as potentials. Looking like darlings of labor they are, and rubbing elbows with the Mayor-elect and other citywide and statewide elected officials, both seemingly improved their positions this past week. Manhattan never comes up short in the horse trading around the Speaker’s race, so we are watching Carlina closely! 

Another possible candidate, who has been an omnipresent fixture in government since seemingly forever, and who didn’t need the events at the Somos conference to propel her into the conversation, is Gale Brewer of Manhattan. After outlining she would only seek a 4 year Speakership, and her pragmatic and personable approach to governing has made Brewer an attractive candidate for Council speaker. 

Prior to last week’s conference, there seemed to be a mini Farah Louis for speaker boomlet. 

With her close, familial ties to County leader and political power-broker Assemblymember Rodneyse Bichotte, and the aforementioned desire for the NYC electorate and the Council body to have a Speaker reflective of both, Louis seems like a good choice. But the Eagle and our spies didn’t see much movement at Somos with regards to her candidacy. That, coupled with Brooklyn being the seat of power for nearly every other governing body, our guess is Queens, Manhattan or the Bronx candidates have an inside track. 

Adrienne Adams and others are still in the running, but this is the snapshot as we see it now. Stay tuned to this space for our coverage of the Gubernatorial, AG and other races following Somos in the coming days.

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