The April 19 special election to fill Sheldon Silver’s Assembly seat is expected to go to the Democratic nominee, Alice Cancel, but that hasn’t stopped others from throwing their hats in the ring.
The Working Families Party has endorsed Democrat Yuh-Line Niou. Niou was competing for the Democratic endorsement too until it became clear she would not be supported by Silver’s Truman Club here on Grand Street. Niou recently gained the endorsement of the teachers’ unions, NYSUT and UFT, which both have strong political arms.
The Republican in the race, businessman Lester Chang, will also be on the Independence and Reform Party lines. (The Reform Party has been renamed from the Stop Common Core Party started by Rob Astorino in the last gubernatorial race.) Chang is clearly running an anti-Sheldon Silver campaign, highlighting the former Speaker’s federal conviction and promising a break from Albany corruption.
Finally, keep in mind that this special election will quickly be overshadowed by the campaign for September’s primary for the same seat. Democrats Paul Newell, Jennifer Rajkumar, and Gigi Li all lost the closed-door nomination fight last month but have promised to run a full campaign in the fall.