It had seemed practically every union in New York City had already endorsed in the race for an open congressional seat in northeastern Queens, but that’s not quite the case. Assemblyman Rory Lancman, who has gobbled up the majority of the big unions, announced the American Federation of State, County and Mucipal Employees of New York earlier this afternoon.
In recent weeks, another candidate competing against Mr. Lancman, Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley, has announced a host of smaller unions, including Uniformed Fire Officers Association, Metallic Lathers and Reinforcing Ironworkers Local 46, and International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 210 and Local 553, but AFSCME stands out, as with its membership components like DC-37 and and CSEA, it represents over 150,000 workers in New York City (but a smaller number in the Congressional District in question, of course).
(Mr. Lancman has also announced his own set of smaller unions in recent days, including Teamsters Local Unions 804, 808 and 917, and the Organization of Staff Analysts.)
At today’s press conference on the steps of City Hall, the union heads endorsing Mr. Lancman heavily cited his work heading the Subcommittee on Workplace Safety in the State Assembly, a post Mr. Lancman has successfully has successfully wielded to elevate his profile in the past.
“Rory Lancman has been an ally and strong partner from day one in our fight to secure passage of Workplace Safety legislation in Albany and to prevent the privatization of Queens Hospital,” DC-37′s executive director, Lillian Roberts, said in a subsequent statement. “In Congress, he will stand up against efforts to privatize Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid and continue his fight against privatization of vital city safety net services.”
Also competing in the Democratic primary is Assemblywoman Grace Meng, who has picked up a couple significant union endorsements herself but is even more notably backed by the entire Queens Democratic establishment. Voters head to the polls on June 26th.