Cynthia Nixon meets with community & ethnic media before Primary Day

Stephon Johnson | 9/12/2018, 5:27 p.m.
Hosted by former City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Nixon spoke with reporters at the Manhattan Neighborhood Network (MNN) El Barrio ...

The faux controversies (and real ones) that’ve arisen leading up to Primary Day won’t matter by the end of Thursday. The only thing that’ll remain will be the issues. New York State Gubernatorial Candidate Cynthia Nixon looked to focus on the issues at a roundtable with community and ethnic media members on Monday in East Harlem.

Hosted by former City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Nixon spoke with reporters at the Manhattan Neighborhood Network (MNN) El Barrio Firehouse Community Media Center. During the hour-long discussion, the candidate reinforced her platform and talked about what separates her from incumbent Andrew Cuomo. Nixon devoted a significant amount of time to tenants rights at the talk, using her own childhood as reference. She recalled watching her mother go in and out of housing court dealign with a shady landlord.

“We need a New York governor who sides with tenants, not with developers,” Nixon told reporters. “As a person who grew up the daughter of a single mother in a one bedroom, five flight walk-up where we had a landlord preying on us for years and lying to us about the rent.

“I’m very aware of how close to the borderline of eviction so many people not just in this city but in this state live,” Nixon continued. Nixon also spoke about her desire to change the New York State’s rent laws to close vacancy decontrol, vacancy bonus and preferential rents loopholes.

Nixon also pointed to legislation that could be signed to help undocumented workers and marginalized New Yorkers, but Cuomo hasn’t yet moved on. She said the New York DREAM Act and the Liberty Act “a long time ago.”

The DREAM Act would give young immigrants access to higher education. The Liberty Act would prohibit the use of state and local agencies from assistant the federal government in detaining immigrants and undocumented New Yorkers. Nixon called the concept of New York as a sanctuary state “largely rhetorical.

“If we really care about stopping the flow of deportations, it is the simplest, most effective thing, quickest thing we could do,” Nixon said. “It’s something I would do on the first day of office, by executive order.

“There’s so much more that we can and should and must be doing,” Nixon continued.

Nixon’s been embattled with Cuomo for the past several months, which has lead to the governor adopting a more progressive agenda on its face. Recently, reports had Cuomo’s team being behind a mailed literature that labeled Nixon anti-semitic for signing a petition with other artists and actors that supported an acting troupe for not performing in a West Bank settlement. The signatures on the petition included Jewish-Americans. Nixon’s also a mother to two Jewish children. Nixon’s called for Democratic National Committee Chief Tom Perez to denounce the literature.

Back in East Harlem, Nixon said that the state’s ready for new blood in the Democratic Party after elected a governor who let the Independent Democratic Conference hold power with Republicans in Albany.

“New York is such a diverse place, such a progressive place,” Nixon said. “I think that New Yorkers are so motivated to not just enact a progressive agenda, but to fight for immigrants, documented and undocumented, in this state.”