In a gathering of almost 100 people the Ben Franklin Club had an early celebration of President Obama's win on election day at the home of City Council Candidate Andrew Cohen. In what has become one of the worst kept secrets, Mr. Cohen has said that he will make a decision after election day about running for term limited City Councilman G. Oliver Koppell's seat. Cohen was elected as a Vice-Chair of the Bronx Democratic County Committee, and has filed with the city's campaign Finance Board as a candidate.
In attendance were Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, (Mayoral/Comptroller candidate), Congressman Eliot Engel, State Senators Jeff Klein and Gustavo Rivera, 81st A.D. Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz, Councilman G. Oliver Koppell, Brooklyn Councilwoman Letitia James (candidate for Public Advocate in 2013).
Councilman Koppell expressed his view that President Obama has a chance of loosing the popular vote, but winning the all important “Electoral College” that elects the president. Congressman Engel took a swipe at his Republican opponent on election day, by asking Assemblyman Dinowitz if it was the same person Dinowitz soundly defeated two years ago. Yes it is replied Dinowitz. Senator Gustavo Rivera standing near Councilman Koppell thanked him for his over 40 years of public service as an elected official. Senator Jeff Klein said that the election is important as it is between what is right and wrong. Klein added “we have to make sure programs continue, and are not cut or discontinued”. It was said that Councilman Koppell has been a member of the Ben Franklin Democratic Club since 1966. Back then the club was known as “The Ben Franklin Reform Democratic Club”.
Questions I asked – Manhattan BP Stringer – Is it true that you are going to run for Comptroller instead of mayor? Reply by Stringer, I have not made up my mind yet.
State Senator Jeff Klein – In 2016 if Gov. Cuomo runs for president and current Attorney General Eric Schniderman runs for governor, would you run for A.G. Reply by Klein – I don't know, it could be a possibility if what I said all happens, but that is to far away to think about now.
Councilwoman James – Are you afraid of facing Brooklyn Councilman Charles Barrons who has said he wants to run for Public Advocate also. Reply by James – Don't believe what Barrons is saying, he and his wife are going to try to swap positions in the council and assembly. An interesting note was that we both agreed that Bronx BP Ruben Diaz Jr. would not be running for citywide office next year. James said that Diaz Jr. is doing a fine job as Bronx BP, but still has to raise the image of the Bronx and himself more before considering citywide office.
Left - Manhattan Borough President Stringer is flanked on his right by Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz and left by City Council candidate Andrew Cohen.
Right - State Senators Jeff Klein and Gustave Rivera with Assemblyman Dinowitz.