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Reviews |  Democracy in New York is a one-party affair

Given the resentment of national politics, there was something reassuring and familiar about the city’s Democratic primary, in which candidates and canvassers filled the city’s parks and farmers’ markets, politely persuading voters.

Near the Brooklyn Bridge on Saturday, a diverse group of Eric Adams supporters including off-duty police and rescue workers were treated with a group of mariachi bands. Jennifer Aguiluz, an EMT, said the city’s EMT union, Local 2507, supported Mr. Adams because he supported a plan to raise their wages, which has long lagged behind firefighters in the same agency. “He understands blue collar workers,” said Ms. Aguiluz, who is a member of the union’s board of directors.

After almost losing the country to Trumpism, questions of whether Mr. Adams – the leading Democratic candidate for mayor – really lives in New York City are somewhat bizarre. (Mr. Adams says he lives in the basement of a house he owns in the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn.)

Even Brad Lander’s dad’s jokes are soothing. “They call me Papa-Lander,” Mr. Lander, a candidate for city comptroller, told a small crowd at Fort Greene Park in Brooklyn on Saturday as people carrying Black Lives Matter signs watched.

Less soothing was Andrew Yang’s Sunday rally in the West Village, where a large group of enthusiastic supporters gathered in a small space, many without a mask, prompting this reporter to head for the exit.

Seriously, however, one-party elections hardly make New York City the Shangri-La of democracy.

On the one hand, the rate of participation in local elections in New York remains catastrophic. In 2017, the year Mr. de Blasio sailed to his re-election, just over 21% of registered voters turned out to vote.

Democratic politics in the city are inundated with the same vested interests and money that undermines confidence in government everywhere. The most depressing example this year is the Manhattan district attorney race. Alvin Bragg remains the best candidate. Sadly, his opponent, Tali Farhadian Weinstein – who is married to a hedge fund manager and has raised millions, including hundreds of thousands from city financial firms – has just poured $ 8 million of her own money into her. countryside.

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