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It doesn’t appear that this year’s big political shake-up in Albany is going to trickle down to its representatives in Kings County.
According to Board of Elections petition filings, it seems that, for good or ill, the same old guard will be representing Brooklynites in Albany in 2009.
Filings show that while 23 of the borough’s incumbents will have opponents in November, only a handful of the borough’s nine State Senators and 19 Assemblymembers are facing primaries.
In fact, at least five elected officials are running unopposed, including one who could lose a lot of political clout this year as his conservative colleagues are clinging for control.
While Democrats are scrambling to wrest the State Senate from the Republicans in key areas in the state, no one has decided to run against State Senator Marty Golden, the only Republican elected official in the entire borough.
When the voters in his district – which stretches from Bay Ridge to Marine Park – go to the polls this November, they will find Golden’s name on the Republican, Independent and Conservative lines, Board of Elections officials said. No other names will be listed.
Other state officials running unopposed this year include Mill Basin State Senator Carl Kruger, Bushwick Assemblymember Vito Lopez, who is also chair of the Kings County Democratic Party, and Flatbush Assemblymember Nick Perry.
Sheepshead Bay Assemblymember Steve Cymbrowitz managed to skirt an election by getting enough petitions to run on the Democrat, Republican and Working Families parties – a tactic that helped him get re-elected two years ago.
Those facing Democratic primaries in September include freshman Flatbush State Senator Eric Adams, who will be facing Guillermo Philpotts. Philpotts, a local block association leader and community board member, ran against Adams back in 2006.
Flatbush Assemblymember Rhoda Jacobs will be going against Michele Adolphe, a New York City high school teacher and Executive Director of the Performing Arts Teen Center.
Williamsburg Assemblymember Joe Lentol will be facing Andre Soleil, an attorney who has run in a number of different campaigns over the years -- as both a Democrat and a Republican – and has, according to published reports, approved of parents physically disciplining their children, as long as they didn’t hurt them too much.
“A few welts on the behind isn’t an indication of abuse,” he said, according an edition of Brooklyn Politics in 2004.
Mill Basin Assemblymember Alan Maisel is also facing a primary, against college professor H.R. Clarke.
But the two biggest primaries in the borough will be in Flatbush and Brooklyn Heights.
In the 21st State Senate District, incumbent Kevin Parker is facing a two-pronged challenge from City Councilmembers Kendall Stewart and Simcha Felder, who are both losing their positions at City Hall to term limits.
In the 25th State Senate District, which includes Park Slope, Carroll Gardens, Williamsburg and Greenpoint, 30-year incumbent Martin Connor will be facing Daniel Squadron, a former staffer to Senator Charles Schumer who has also secured a spot on both the Democratic and Working Families line.
Political insiders said that while Democrats are scrambling to oust Republicans from Albany this year, the opposite won’t apply in Brooklyn, where Democrats outnumber Republicans eight to one, according to some estimates.
While nearly two dozen state incumbents have Republican or Conservative challengers this year, it’s not expected that any of them will get enough votes to be victorious, they said.
But, in a freak twist, a Republican primary is brewing in East Williamsburg and Bushwick.
Board of Elections officials said that both Micael Edgar Freeman-Saulsberre and Victor Guarino will be fighting for the Republican line in the 17th State Senate District, which is currently held by incumbent Martin Malave Dilan.
©2008 Community Newspaper Group
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