Manhattan’s City Council and State Senate representatives have come out in support for Brooklyn’s City Councilman Jumaane Williams (D-Flatbush, East Flatbush), the newly crowned Public Advocate of NYC.
Williams won the Public Advocate race last night by a considerable margin, carrying 33 percent of the vote. City Councilman Eric Ulrich (D-Belle Harbor, Breezy Point) came in a distant second with 19 percent, followed by former City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, who garnered 11 percent.
“I’m a little bit in shock, so you’ll have to bear with me,” said Williams. “I’m honored to be serving as your next public advocate.”
Williams’ career in politics has been defined by activism – to the point where he prefers to be referred to as an “activist elected official”, rather than a politician. Some of his top priorities as a council member were abolishing the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk policy and prohibiting employers from asking for job applicants’ criminal records.
Runner-up Melissa Mark-Viverito had nothing but kind words to say about him, graciously accepting her loss.
“Look forward to your service on behalf of our great city,” Mark-Viverito said in a tweet. “¡Pa’lante siempre pa’lante hermano!”
City Council Speaker Corey Johnson (D-Chelsea, Hell’s Kitchen) commented that as a former Public Advocate, he knows that Williams has what it takes to use the position to its full potential.
“I congratulate my colleague and friend Jumaane Williams on winning last night’s special election and I will do everything I can to ensure a smooth transition in the coming days,” said Johnson. “In my brief time as Acting Public Advocate, I found the heart and soul of the office to be in listening to New Yorkers and helping people with the problems they face. I know Public Advocate-elect Williams embodies the spirit of helping the New Yorkers most in need and I wish him the best of luck as he takes office.”
City Councilman Mark Levine (D-Manhattanville, Manhattan Valley) said that he was impressed by Williams’ record as a lawmaker, and that he expects great things from him as a Public Advocate.
“NYC has an outstanding new city-wide elected leader, whose activism, passion and fearlessness will do powerful things for our city,” said Levine.