When East Meets West

| 23 May 2022 | 10:20

New world order – She’s been presiding in the district for 30 years. And he wants to kick her out. Astounding? Well he now resides there and wants to preside. In many ways, in many a scenario, it’s a NY story. No one ever thought that Manhattan’s East Side and West Side could or would become one, but it’s happened. Thanks to the new version of NYS’s congressional electoral map, Jerrold Nadler has been mapped out of his district and will be running against his residence’s Congress Member Carolyn Maloney. So, until primary day, now scheduled for August 23, east and west will retain their separate identities and then have to decide who the east has won.

However it goes, Congress will be losing a veteran legislator. Maloney and Nadler have represented their respective CDs for 30 years. Both are powerful and highly regarded. Nadler’s chair of the Judiciary Committee. Maloney’s chair of the Oversight Committee. The loss of either is impactful. And, agree or disagree with them, who in Manhattan could imagine life without a Maloney AND a Nadler? Nadler’s 10th Congressional has been redrawn and it makes him a resident of Maloney’s 12th Congressional District. So what’s a 30-year incumbent to do? Ask Maloney (which I haven’t) and she’d tell Nadler to run where he’s the incumbent. Ask Nadler (which I haven’t), he’d say he’ll run where he resides. The tenure of these two titans is at stake, and their minions will be fighting to the finish in a battle that will end on August 23 at the ballot box.

And what does the political class, those with allegiances or good will to both do? Who will they support? Too soon for predictions and handicapping at this point, but everyone’s talking, and I want to know where the politicos and electeds stand as the campaign season enters full swing. So I’ll be reaching out, until Primary Day, asking political insiders and electeds who they’ll be supporting.

It will be a whole new ballgame for Assembly, State Senate and other candidates seeking endorsements for their own candidacies. Will Maloney and Nadler be endorsing the same candidate? Different candidates in a particular primary race, like say in the 73rd AD race? And how will their endorsement affect their own candidacy?

Alas, we’re living in an interesting time. However it turns out, it’s hard to imagine that there won’t be a Jerry Nadler AND a Carolyn Maloney in Congress.

Over the weekend I reached out to political insiders in the Democratic Party in Nadler’s now 10th District, and in Maloney’s 12th District to get their thoughts and whom they will be supporting. Frank Wilkinson, longtime leader and activist on the UES, said, “I regret that two highly regarded, powerful, veteran members of Congress are competing in the 12th. Since Maloney has represented the bigger part of the new 12th district I think Nadler would have an easier race in the new 10th, which he has partly represented, where his chief opponent would be the unpopular, bumbling Bill de Blasio.” Wilkinson’s for Maloney.

Midtown East political insider who was on Maloney’s staff, Greg Lambert, said, “Obviously, this is a very hard choice, like choosing between Nathan’s franks and cotton candy at Coney Island – you want both. Maloney has a feel for the East Side and helped ‘retire’ a group of Republicans. She has been a leader in the fight for LGBT rights and to protect the environment. Because of all this and her leadership of the Oversight Committee, she should continue.”

It was short notice, but interestingly the only responses I got so far were from East Siders. Probably because I’m an East Sider. I must say, the mapmaker did not get it right when he merged the two. But the vote goes on. And in coming weeks, I’ll be seeking advice in handicapping. Despite Kipling’s view that “never the twain shall meet,” East’s met West. And there will be either a Maloney or Nadler at the helm.