Last night, Brooklyn’s African American district leaders met in an effort to emerge with a united voice for Assemblyman Karim Camara to replace Assemblyman Vito Lopez as the chairman of the borough’s Democratic Party in the wake of his sexual harassment scandal. According to multiple accounts of people familiar with the meeting, this effort was unsuccessful.
The plan was to consolidate a significant number of district leader votes for Mr. Camara, which would provide a counterweight to the establishment favorite Frank Seddio for Mr. Lopez’s job. However, a substantial number of African American district leaders did not attend the meeting, Mr. Camara apparently wasn’t making the necessary calls, and not everyone agreed that all the stops needed to be pulled out for Mr. Camara’s candidacy.
Consensus did emerge to meet with the county leader candidates, however.
“Home from meeting with Black State Committee members in Brooklyn. Consensus: Meet with all County Leader candidates during weekend of 9/15, then move from there,” one of the attendees, Chris Owens, posted on Facebook. “Possible candidates at the moment: Karim Camara, Felix Ortiz, Frank Seddio, Jo Anne Simon …?”
Even before the meeting, sources told the Politicker that Mr. Seddio had the necessary number of votes secured to become district leader, so last night’s development only cements that further.
“It is apparent there was not consensus among the African-American district leaders, which will in all likelihood ensure Seddio is the new boss,” one disappointed critic of the establishment told us.
For his part, Mr. Seddio has been going on a confident media tour to introduce himself. He pitched himself as a change candidate to the Daily News, and said of one of his rivals, Ms. Simon, “It’s kind of like running a marathon, where I’m coming in number one and she’s number 6,367.”