We’ve been heavily hinting at the probability all weekend, but it can now be said for sure: Congressman Ed Towns will endorse his former opponent, Councilman Charles Barron, for his congressional seat tomorrow afternoon. Mr. Barron is competing against Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries in a high-profile Democratic primary election June 26th.
Various Brooklyn politicos have told The Politicker the decision can be attributed to the tension between Mr. Towns and the head of the Brooklyn Democratic Party, Assemblyman Vito Lopez. In addition to supporting Mr. Jeffries this year, Mr. Lopez opposed Mr. Towns’ daughter when she unsuccessfully ran for the State Assembly last year for the seat held by her brother, Darryl Towns.
“Independent voices are needed more than ever in today’s political environment,” Mr. Towns said in a statement, probably referencing Mr. Lopez’s support for Mr. Jeffries. “That’s why I am giving my support to Charles Barron who has been an independent voice over the years. He is unselfish and is definitely has the interests of the people of this district at heart.”
Mr. Towns was previously running for reelection before abruptly announcing his retirement about a month ago. His statement supporting Mr. Barron, who ran against him in 2006 as well, rather favorably referenced his reelection chances this year had he decided to actually run again.
“Rep. Towns was favored to win the primary for the newly-created 8th Congressional District until he decided to retire after 30 years in Congress,” it read. “While Barron’s opponent has racked up a significant number of endorsements from a wide range of supporters, some believe this will make him beholden to a large number of special interests.”