Term limited City Council Member Darlene Mealy (Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brownsville) today took incumbent Freshman Assemblywoman Latrice Walker to task for alleging that she or members of her campaign would ever do something as lowdown and dirty as slit tires or put sugar in the gas tank of a political opponent in the heat of an election campaign.
The two Brownsville lawmakers are facing off in the Sept. 13 Democratic primary for the 55th Assembly District seat.During a fundraiser last month, Walker alleged that Mealy’s campaign did just that as well as put glue in the locks of her campaign office doors when the two faced off for the Brownsville Democratic District Leadership position in 2010.
“Why would someone say that and not put in a (police) report on something like that. Putting sugar in a gas tank is damaging a car, but she (Walker) is damaging people’s character,” said Mealy. “Being an elected official you have to be held to a high level of accountability and you have to know the facts. I’m a seasoned elected official, and my opponent isn’t seasoned enough to know that, but please don’t damage people’s character on a whim like that.”
Mealy said she could have refuted the allegation just as she could have pressed charges on Walker when the two recently had a physical altercation before witnesses, but decided against it on the advice of a former district leader.
“People who work on my campaign are passionate because they know the kind of work I do. You can ask Rev. Al Sharpton. They know who we are and that we’re doing right by the people and we’re respectful. We’ve never been aggressive,” said Mealy.
Mealy said she’s proud of the work she’s done in the City Council, which includes paving the way for an affordable housing complex on Bergen Street and Saratoga Avenue in Ocean Hill, in which two bedroom apartments are renting for $675, one bedroom apartments for $575 and studios for $475.
“I’ve also put in major funding for summer youth jobs to make sure our young people are occupied for the summer,” she said.
Mealy said she will now spend the summer knocking on doors, greeting people at subway stations and senior centers and doing the meet and greets that all candidates running for office do.
She is also in her ninth year of holding an acclaimed summer concert series, which will kick off with the Tito Puento Jr. and his All-Star Band at 3 p.m. this Sunday July 24 at the Van Dyke Community Center, 392 Blake Avenue.
Walker spokesperson Mary Alice Miller said the assemblywoman stands on her accomplishments including bringing about $1 billion in capital and service funds to the district.
“Assemblywoman Walker also stands on her legislative record. She voted in favor of numerous progressive pieces of legislation including the historic increase on the minimum wage to $15 an hour and the historic Family Paid Leave Act,” said Miller.
Miller said Walker also introduced pre-clearance voting right legislation which protects the voting rights of people of color. The measure passed the assembly and will come before the senate in the next legislative session, she said.