Lenora Fulani isn't running for anything this year, but the Marxist activist and frequent candidate (who has made controversial statements about Jews, Israel and the Sept. 11 attacks) is fast becoming one of the most talked-about personalities on the political scene.
That's got Jewish leaders worried about elected officials turning a blind eye for quick political gain.
If the black-Latino coalition forged in last year's mayoral race holds together this year, it could spell trouble for state Sen. Eric Schneiderman. The two-term Democrat is facing former Councilman Guillermo Linares, the first Dominican-American elected to public office here, in September's primary for a district that includes areas of northern Manhattan and the Bronx.
With African-American gubernatorial hopeful Carl McCall on the ticket and Latinos running in several local races, minority turnout could bode well for Linares.
Fate can be fickle when you're a member of Congress caught up in the decennial redistricting process. A few weeks back, Bronx Rep. Eliot Engel was emerging as one of the big losers in the process. Now he' singing the praises of the state Legislature committee that drew the new lines.
"I'm absolutely delighted," said Engel, a six-term veteran. "I'm like a kid again!"
Engel's new district includes 50 percent of his old turf, including his home base of Riverdale, and picks up parts of Westchester as well as three heavily Jewish Rockland towns.
A delegation of City Council members will leave for Israel upon the completion of the city budget process, Speaker Gifford Miller announced Sunday.
"We're going to show that we as New Yorkers understand [the situation in Israel] and we want to be supportive in any way we can," Miller told several hundred Jewish community leaders and elected officials at the annual breakfast of the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty.
She could have been a contender. And as a Jewish woman from upstate, she might have made history running with a downstate African-American man.
But at last week's Democratic state convention, Sandra Frankel yielded to pressure from the gubernatorial campaign of H. Carl McCall and bowed out of the race for lieutenant governor.
Her withdrawal paved the way for Westchester millionaire Dennis Mehiel to overwhelmingly win the party's designation, later to join forces with McCall as his running mate.
Councilman Noach Dear, an ardent backer of President Bill Clinton in New York, will not back Clinton's wife for Senate here, The Jewish Week has learned.
Dear is planning to support Mayor Rudolph Giuliani should he enter the race to succeed Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan in 2000, according to sources close to Dear.
Dear has raised millions of dollars in the Orthodox community for the two Clinton campaigns and is likely to do the same for Vice President Al Gore in 2000. He traditionally backs Democratic candidates, but supported Giuliani's re-election in 1997.
The words "New York mayor" and "low profile" are rarely uttered in the same breath these days. Rudolph Giuliani tends to dominate the headlines. His predecessor, David Dinkins, has been at the center of recent protests against police policies. And one would practically have to make an effort to avoid the opinions of three-term mayor Ed Koch, a newspaper columnist, TV commentator and, until recently, radio host.
Rep. Steve Israel, that is, as committee carves Dem-friendly Suffolk district.
by Adam Dickter
It could have been the race to watch on Long Island this year: Two old friends from Huntington vying for a congressional seat in the first all-Jewish general election anyone can remember in Suffolk County.
Amid speculation about shifting party loyalties, it might have been interesting to see if Jewish voters picked Democratic incumbent Steve Israel or Republican Allan Binder.
Her campaign for Senate may be in deep freeze while Hillary Rodham Clinton toys with her own campaign, but Rep. Nita Lowey insists she holds no grudges. "I respect Hillary Clinton's decision-making process," she told Political Memos in a recent interview. "In the meantime, I'm doing what I have to do, should I be the candidate."
A congressional race that is nearly two years away already is making waves in the Crown Heights Jewish community, as two of its political allies head for a 2000 showdown.
Rep. Major Owens, who has represented District 11 in central Brooklyn for 16 years, is likely to face a Democratic primary challenge next year from his former protege, Councilwoman Una Clarke. Both have been strong supporters of Jewish causes, leaving activists wondering whom to support, or in a third option, whether to run a Jewish candidate.