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November 30, 2012 1:22 pm
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NYC Council Candidate Asks: “A White/Jewish City Council Member Representing Upper Manhattan?”

avatar by Zach Pontz

Mark D. Levine. Photo: markdlevine.com

A candidate for a position on New York City’s 7th Council District referred to his opponent as a White/Jewish candidate” and said that he was trying “to sneak into office like a thief in the night.”

Thomas Lopez-Pierre, an African-American, made the remarks in emails sent to the Douglass Grant Democratic Club. The subject line of the email was: “A White/Jewish City Council Member representing Upper Manhattan?”

In an interview with the Jewish Week Lopez-Pierre said, ‘I don’t hate Jews; I love black people. I love political empowerment. … A black person has represented the district for many years, and we don’t want to see the black and Latino caucus be minus one.”

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Lopez Pierre also said in the same interview, “I don’t want a councilman that represents all the people; I want a councilman who represents my community.” The 7th District is located in upper Manhattan, which he says has a 70 percent minority population.

“They said those Jews are gonna lynch you,” Lopez-Pierre told the Jewish Week. “But because I work for myself, I don’t have to answer to anyone. I have the cojones, the balls, to send out this e-mail.”

Ron Meier, New York director of the Anti-Defamation League, told The Jewish Week “introducing race and religion into a city council election as a stand-in for qualifications is offensive to all voters in the district and offensive to the democratic process.”

Commenting on Lopez-Pierre’s allegations, Levine would only say that the remarks were “so outrageous they don’t even merit a response.”

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