Seddio Holds Court At Dem County Commitee Meeting


Kings County Democratic Party Boss Frank Seddio held the party’s annual January meeting last week and summed up the main role of the committee this way: “One of the first things we look to do is defeat Republicans. When there is a disagreement among the Democrats it is not our role to take a position one way or another.”

Kings County Democratic Party Chair Frank Seddio

Seddio announced the Committee’s aspirations of taking two seats from Republicans this November, State Sen. Marty Golden‘s (R-Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, Bensonhurst, Bath Beach, Marine Park, Manhattan Beach) 22nd District seat,  and U.S. Rep. Dan Donovan‘s (R-Souther Brooklyn, Staten Island) 11th Congressional District seat.

Seddio expressed his preference for avoiding a primary fight among democrats in anticipation of two tough races.

“We unfortunately have two people running, which is creating a primary. That doesn’t make me happy to have two candidates running, wasting resources, spending energy and effort before running against the Republican who is holding the position right now,” said Seddio. “The congressional race is even worse. We have seven people running against the incumbent Dan Donovan and we are praying that the incumbent loses because we have a better chance of beating [Republican primary candidate Michael] Grimm, the former congressman, and we have a better chance of beating him.”

But with the large overlap in the races, Seddio was at least pleased that out in the field the party could campaign for both races at the same time.

Andrew Gounardes
Candidate Ross Barkan. Photo by Kadia Goba

A Bay Ridge resident spoke up to say that her neighborhood is more Democratic than it is perceived, expressed some hope that Andrew Gounardes, second time candidate and current Counsel to Brooklyn Borough President, could be a strong challenger to Marty Golden. Seddio moved to stop too much discussion in support of one democratic candidate without someone for the other candidate. Gounardes is running against Ross Barken, a New York City based journalist.

The discussion brought Seddio back to the state senate seat, stressing the need to take back the senate to deal with gerrymandering, the only remedy for some of the crowds concerns for seats like Assembly Member Nicole Malliotakis’ which covers part of Bay Ridge, but is a Republican strong hold because it is majority Staten Island.

State Sen. Jesse Hamilton

A few people in the crowd asked about senate district 20, State Sen. Jesse Hamilton’s seat. When Seddio responded that Jesse Hamilton is a Democrat there was a chorus of no’s and jeers from the crowd.

Seddio then yelled down the crowd and told them that anyone who lives in Hamilton’s district knows how to vote if they are unhappy with him saying, “hopefully the Democrats will one day wake up and join together again. And the Governor is working very hard to make that happen.”

In response, a woman yelled out that the county party shouldn’t be welcoming members of the senate’s Independent Democratic Conference (IDC) into the Democratic party and called for an impromptu show of hands for people who thought that the IDC should not be welcomed into the party.

The outbursts prompted a few other members to speak up about civility.

There was a sentiment expressed by a few people in the crowd to use the committee meetings for more political strategy and planning in order to mobilize the enthusiasm.

There was a noticeable divide between the more recent additions to the committee, particularly from the New Kings Democrats club, and older members who chaffed against their more disruptive methods to be heard during the meeting.