Recent Endorsements

New Kings Democrats is a progressive, grassroots political organization committed to bringing transparency, accountability, and inclusionary democracy to the Brooklyn Democratic Party. 

We're proud to endorse the following candidates and support their campaigns with digital organizing events. Are you interested in volunteering for a NKD candidate? Sign-up for a volunteer shift here!

 

Our Endorsed Candidates 

To receive an endorsement, our membership must be confident that you share our values of accountability, transparency, and inclusive democracy, while also aligning with our policy platform.

KENYA HANDY-HILLIARD FOR CITY COUNCIL IN CD 40

In March 2021, New Kings Democrats considered all Democratic candidates in the race, and we're excited to stand behind Kenya Handy-Hilliard for Council District 40.

The Race

Council District 40 includes Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Kensington, Midwood, Prospect Park, and Prospect Lefferts Gardens. The current Council Member is Mathieu Eugene, who is term-limited and the longest-serving member of the Council (and running for Borough President). The district is majority Black, with a significant Carribean-American population, though gentrification and other factors have caused those numbers to decrease. This is a crowded race, with a number of establishment supported candidates and political newcomers with activist and organizing backgrounds. 

Our Call

There is no question that District 40 has been left in the lurch by an absent Council Member and needs a new leader who can hit the ground running to make up for lost time. Kenya, with her government experience and grassroots organizing she has done in the district, is just that leader. Among a crowded field, she stands out as the candidate with the most breadth and depth in her policy platform, as well as someone will to learn from her constituents as she goes. This is our chance to take back District 40 from the machine, and Kenya is the candidate to do it.

Website: www.kenyaforthepeople.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/kenya4thepeople 
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kenyaforthepeople2021/ 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Kenyaforthepeople2021

 

LINCOLN RESTLER FOR CITY COUNCIL IN CD 33

In February 2021, New Kings Democrats considered all Democratic candidates in the race for City Council District 33 and proudly endorsed Lincoln Restler.

The Race

Council District 33 is in many ways a microcosm of the issues plaguing the city as a whole -- out-of-control rent, out-of-scale development, climate change, and overburdened infrastructure. It is a district with both pockets of long-term unemployment and incredibly underserved communities, as well as some of the wealthiest in the city. Council Member Steve Levin is term-limited, and while his progressive bona fides have improved in recent years, he is considered a largely absent leader and leftover vestige from the Vito Lopez era.

This is another crowded race and several candidates have values that align with NKD’s. Because of this, we believe in supporting the candidate most poised to hit the ground running and be able to partner with other leaders across the city to get things done right away. 

Our Call

District 33 is in need of a representative who can fight for tenants over big landlords and developers, respond to climate change, and help residents and commercial tenants recover from the effects of COVID-19. Lincoln Restler is the candidate uniquely poised to do so. His experience in City Hall means he knows the ins and outs of city government and will advocate on behalf of the district’s tenants. From helping found our club, NKD, to fighting the party bosses as District Leader in North Brooklyn, Lincoln knows how to get things done in a progressive, just way.

Lincoln is a native and lifelong resident of the district. He spent much of his career working in city government, including for Mayor de Blasio. Lincoln is running on a platform to address the housing affordability crisis, climate change, and racial justice. Just as a candidate, he has published a comprehensive plan to make District 33 carbon-neutral, and has partnered with NKD endorsees Assembly Member Emily Gallagher and State Senator Julia Salazar -- two very left-leaning, reformer leaders in Brooklyn -- to introduce a state bill that would mandate low rent for units that remain vacant for three months. He’s already getting the work done and we can’t wait to see what he does once elected.

Website: www.lincolnforcouncil.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/lincolnrestler 
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lincolnforcouncil 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LincolnRestlerForCityCouncil 

 

BRANDON WEST FOR CITY COUNCIL IN CD 39

In February 2021, New Kings Democrats considered all Democratic candidates in the race for City Council District 39 and are excited to endorse Brandon West.

The Race

Council District 39 is currently led by CM Brad Lander, who is term-limited and running to be the city’s next Comptroller. The district boasts some of the highest incomes and highest voter participation in the city. This is a distinctly diverse council district; pockets of the community are dramatically underserved.

While NKD invites all Democrats who file in a race to participate in our endorsement process, five participated, each of which have fairly different approaches to addressing the issues that the district faces. Only one candidate had the combination of leadership experience and focused yet progressive policy ideas that CD 39 deserves.

Our Call

Brandon West is a voting rights activist, union organizer, and racial justice advocate. He is a committed Democratic Socialist and a former president of New Kings Democrats. Brandon was previously a City Hall Budget staffer and was part of both the Free Black Radicals and the Occupy City Hall groups. His priorities are defunding the police, reforming ULURP and the land use process, and creating equitable and integrated schools.

New Kings Democrats has endorsed Brandon West in this race. District 39 is facing existential challenges in housing, education, and safety — and Brandon is the only candidate with specific, nuanced policy ideas that will benefit all in the district, especially those most left behind. He is a known voice of progressive leadership and ideals, and will build upon that expertise in the Council.

Website: https://westforcouncil.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/brandonwestnyc
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/brandonwestnyc
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brandonwestnyc

 

CRYSTAL HUDSON FOR CITY COUNCIL IN CD 35

In December 2020, New Kings Democrats considered all Democratic candidates in the race for City Council District 35 and proudly endorsed Crystal Hudson.


The Race

In many ways, the Council race in District 35 is about finding the right, progressive candidate to fix what many have seen as a lack of leadership and representation in the City Council over the incumbent’s term. It’s a district facing staggering out-of-scale development and housing insecurity, and is reeling from the effects of COVID-19 on its residents and small business owners.

This Council race is a crowded field. There is no clear machine-aligned candidate, and there are several newcomers to the political scene running this cycle. 


Our Call

Council District 35 is in desperate need of a Council Member whose roots are grounded in the district itself, who will fight for working folks, and who isn't in the pockets of real estate. With that in mind, Crystal Hudson is the standout candidate. 

She is a first-time candidate but brings experience as a longtime Council staffer and Deputy Public Advocate under Jumaane Williams, and will be ready to navigate the byzantine system of local government as soon as she is elected.

Crystal got into public service to better help people like her family as they struggled to navigate the healthcare system, and her proven commitment to working on behalf of her neighbors bodes well for her work as a compassionate, unrelenting Council Member.


Website: www.crystalforbk.com
Twitter: twitter.com/crystalrhudson
Instagram: www.instagram.com/chudchud
Facebook: www.facebook.com/crystalforbk

 

JENNIFER GUTIERREZ FOR CITY COUNCIL IN CD 34

In December 2020, New Kings Democrats proudly endorsed Jen Gutierrez for City Council in District 34.


The Race

This race is a meaningful one for North Brooklyn. The seat has been held by Antonio Reynoso, whom NKD has proudly endorsed for Borough President — and it is imperative that another progressive and active leader step in to lead the district next. It is a Council District in need of more investment in green infrastructure, healthcare, and housing — and would falter under a challenger aligned with the Party machine.


Our Call

Jen Gutierrez is, at present, the only announced candidate actively running in Council District 34. She has been a longtime staffer for Council Member Antonio Reynoso —  currently endorsed by NKD for Borough President — and is a progressive activist and grassroots leader in the community. Jen epitomizes the type of enthusiastic, caring, and committed leadership the district — and Council — needs.


Website: www.jennifergutierrez2021.com
Twitter: twitter.com/jengutierreznyc
Instagram: www.instagram.com/jengutierreznyc

 

ANTONIO REYNOSO FOR BROOKLYN BOROUGH PRESIDENT

In November 2020, New Kings Democrats proudly endorsed Antonio Reynoso for Brooklyn Borough President.

The Race

This is a crowded race, and one in which many candidates are vying for the seat—and the Party’s support to get it. That support doesn’t come for free, and often involves back room deals in exchange for power that means everyday Brooklynites, many of whom are reeling from the effects of COVID-19 and whose livelihoods have been compromised by the pandemic, are not their priority. Three term-limited Council Members are in the race (Robert Cornegy, Mathieu Eugene, and Antonio Reynoso), as is Assembly Member Jo Anne Simon, Reverend Kim Council, and community leader Khari Edwards.

Our Call

We spoke with six different candidates, and we asked them all: what needs to change about the Brooklyn Democratic Party? Council Member Antonio Reynoso is the only one whose response clearly aligned with NKD’s values—and he has an incredibly viable shot at the seat, with the support of progressives and reformers behind him. 

CM Reynoso said the Party uses the BP office to wield its influence—but will have no influence on his office. He wants to show people that Brooklyn is the progressive capital of the world, and that we can use the power of the Brooklyn Democratic Party to be more inclusive and transparent as a borough.

It’s no secret that borough presidents’ power and role can be unclear to many. A lot of what they do is behind the scenes, or related to budgeting, or is really about a platform by which city agencies and community boards get things done. But Antonio understands that. He was one of the only candidates to offer very specific ideas of what he would do in the office to reform the land use process and community boards, such that we will be able to alleviate the disproportionate impact the city’s zoning laws and budgeting practices have on communities of color in the borough.

Campaign Website: www.reynosoforbrooklyn.com
Twitter:
twitter.com/ReynosoBrooklyn

 

SANDY NURSE FOR CITY COUNCIL IN CD 37

In November 2020, New Kings Democrats proudly endorsed Sandy Nurse in the City Council race in CD 37.

The Race

While the field has narrowed, this race is shaping up to be reformers and community activists versus the Party and its interest in retaining control over the Council in eastern Brooklyn. The seat has sat empty since Raphael Espinal vacated the seat with two years left in his term, leaving one of the districts hardest hit by the pandemic without a voice in the Council.

Activist, food justice leader, and co-founder of Mayday Space Sandy Nurse is running against longtime district resident Misba Abdin and County favorite and District Leader Darma Diaz.

Our Call

Sandy Nurse represents so much of what NKD believes in: compassionate, grounded activism and accountability. We endorsed her for previous Assembly and Council runs in the district and know this is her time. District 37 has never been more in need of a thoughtful and unafraid leader who will go to bat for her neighbors whose lives and livelihoods are being compromised by the pandemic and from imminent rezoning. Sandy is that leader and we are proud to join the growing progressive coalition that supports her candidacy.

Website: sandyforcouncil.com

Twitter: twitter.com/SandyforCouncil

Instagram: www.instagram.com/sandyforcouncil21

Facebook: www.facebook.com/sandyforcouncil21

 

Are you interested in pursuing our endorsement, or curious about our process? Read about it here!

2020

37th City Council District - Sandy Nurse

54th Assembly District - Sandy Nurse

7th Congressional District - Nydia Velazquez

18th State Senate District - Julia Salazar

Assembly Member, 51st Assembly District - Genesis Aquino

Assembly Member, 50th Assembly District - Emily Gallagher

District Leader, 50th Assembly District - Kristina Naplatarski

District Leader, 53rd Assembly District - Samuel N. Olivares

District Leader, 52nd Assembly District - Jesse Pierce

District Leader, 57th Assembly District - Shaquana Boykin

District Leader, 51st Assembly District - Julio Pena III

2019

Public Advocate - Jumaane Williams


2018

Public Advocate - Jumaane Williams

7th Congressional District - Nydia Velazquez

20th State Senate District - Zellnor Myrie

Female District Leader in Assembly District 51 - Genesis Aquino

Lt. Governor - Jumaane Williams

Governor - Cynthia Nixon

18th State Senate District - Julia Salazar

Attorney General - Zephyr Teachout


2017

34th City Council District - Antonio Reynoso

35th City Council District - Ede Fox

38th City Council District - Carlos Menchaca

41st City Council District - Alicka Samuel

43rd City Council District - Rev. Khader El-Yateem

 

2016

7th Congressional District - Nydia Velazquez

18th State Senate District - Debbie Medina

Assemblymember, 44th Assembly District - Bobby Carroll

District Leader, 44th Assembly District - Bobby Carroll

District Leader, 50th Assembly District - Emily Gallagher

District Leader, 50th Assembly District - Nick Rizzo

 

2014

7th Congressional District – Nydia Velazquez

18th State Senate District – Debbie Medina

20th State Senate District – Rubain Dorancy

51st Assembly District – Ceasar Zuniga

53rd Assembly District – No endorsement

55th Assembly District – Lori Boozer

District Leader, 50th Assembly District – Nick Rizzo

 

2013

53rd Assembly District – Jason Otaño

New York City Mayor – Bill de Blasio

New York City Comptroller – Scott Stringer

New York City Public Advocate – No endorsement

Brooklyn Borough President – No endorsement

Brooklyn District Attorney – Abe George

Brooklyn District Attorney – Ken Thompson

33rd City Council District – No endorsement

35th City Council District – No endorsement

38th City Council District – Carlos Menchaca

 

2012

12th Congressional District – Nydia Velazquez

10th Congressional District – Hakeem Jeffries

18th State Senate District - Jason Otaño

50th Assembly District – No endorsement

District Leader, 50th Assembly District – Lincoln Restler

District Leader, 52nd Assembly District – Chris Owens

Civil Court Judge, Countywide Races –  No endorsement

Civil Court Judge, 1st District – Richard Montelione

Civil Court Judge, 2nd District – No endorsement

 

2011

54th Assembly District – Jesus Gonzalez

 

2010

12th Congressional District – Nydia Velazquez

25th State Senate District - Daniel Squadron

52th Assembly District – Joan Millman

District Leader, 53rd Assembly District – Esteban Duran

District Leader, 53rd Assembly District – Barbara Medina

District Leader, 52rd Assembly District – Jo Anne Simon

District Leader, 50th Assembly District – Lincoln Restler

District Leader, 50th Assembly District – Kate Zidar

 

2009

33rd Council District — Evan Thies

34th Council District — No endorsement

35th Council District — Letitia James 


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