Adams Supports Ex City Hall Officer In Brooklyn Democratic Feud

Mayor Adams backs a former City Hall staffer who wants to overthrow a pro-Andrew Yang district leader in Brooklyn — a contest that has involved one of the mayor’s top assistants on a massive scale behind the scenes.

Former City Hall staffer Pinny Ringel will face David Schwartz, the district leader of Brooklyn’s 48th Assembly District, which spans parts of Borough Park, Mapleton and Midwood in Tuesday’s primary.

Schwartz is a fierce critic of Rodneyse Bichotte-Hermelyn, the chairman of the borough’s Democratic Party and an ally of Adams. The mayor’s approval gives Ringel a major boost in the final days of the campaign.

“I have known Pinny Ringel for many years and have seen firsthand his effective advocacy for the people of Brooklyn,” Adams said in a statement Friday. “I am pleased to support him as leader of the Democratic District in Brooklyn’s 48th Assembly District. I urge you to vote for Pinny Ringel on Tuesday.”

In addition to the momentum for Ringel, Adams attended a fundraising campaign for his campaign in Borough Park Wednesday night, said two local political agents who were directly familiar with the matter. The action of the fundraiser was first reported by Politico.

A top lieutenant from Adams is also involved in helping Ringel, underscoring the importance of the race to the mayor.

In March, the Daily News reported that Menashe Shapiro, Adams’s deputy chief of staff, was working on the phone to support Ringel — including by pressuring councilors to stop publicly supporting Schwartz, whose district spans the predominantly Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods of Borough Park and Midwood.

The two political agents familiar with the case, who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of angering the mayor, said Shapiro has only become more involved since this spring.

Shapiro has served as Ringel’s “de facto campaign manager” in the closing days of the race, the sources said.

“He burns the phones calling, volunteers on the ground – basically all the things a campaign manager would do,” said one of the officers.

Shapiro, who was a political strategist before joining Adams’ administration, declined to comment when reached on Friday.

Adams spokesman Fabien Levy declined to comment on Shapiro’s role in Ringel’s campaign, but said that as deputy chief of staff, Shapiro is “focused on serving the people of New York City every day.”

The Adams team’s entry into the low-level race has misled some Brooklyn community leaders.

Ex-State Councilor Dov Hikind, who formerly represented the 48th district and is a supporter of Schwartz, said in March that Adams’ involvement creates the impression that he is punishing Schwartz for supporting Yang’s 2021 mayoral campaign and for being publicly critical of the leadership. of Bichotte-Hermelyn. of the Brooklyn Democrats.

Schwartz, who served in Yang’s mayoral campaign last year and was first elected district leader in 2016, declined to comment Friday.

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