Saperstein On Brink Of GOP Endorsement For Assembly Run

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Steve Saperstein with constituents. Photo contributed from the Saperstein campaign.

While all the i’s are not dotted and the t’s not crossed Republican Steven Saperstein has emerged as the consensus Brooklyn GOP candidate to run for the open 46th District Assembly seat representing Coney Island and parts of Bay Ridge, Bath Beach, Dyker Heights and Brighton Beach.

The previous 46th AD Assemblymember Pamela Harris, a Democrat, recently resigned from office under a multi-count criminal indictment including charges of making false statements, wire fraud,  bankruptcy fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, witness tampering and conspiracy to obstruct justice.

Steve Saperstein

“The theme of my campaign is obviously corruption,” said Saperstein, noting that although the district has a large majority of registered Democrats {like all of Brooklyn}, Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis beat Bill de Blasio in the district in her race for mayor.

“There’s a growing Republican base here and I’m a common sense kind of moderate,” he said.

Saperstein grew up in the area and currently lives in Trump Village – the large seven-building development straddling Coney Island and Brighton Beach that Donald Trump’s father, Fred Trump, built in 1963-64, in large part through the state subsidized Mitchell Lama program to develop middle-income housing. He lives in the complex with his wife Elina, who emigrated from the former Soviet Union to Brighton Beach  with her family in 1989, and their young daughter, Rebecca.

Saperstein said his spark for public service came from growing up in a quiet home, where his first language was American Sign Language, that he needed to communicate with his deaf parents and brother. Though hearing himself, this early need to help others navigate the world, while also being raised by those same people in a loving home, instilled his devotion to service.

“It taught me the power of communication and being an advocate and a leader for others,” Saperstein, who is a special needs teacher, said. “Education, caring for our seniors, responsible development, mass transit – these are the issues I care deeply about, and what will drive my campaign and service in the State Assembly.”

Steve Saperstein, left, with Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis on the assembly floor in Albany. Contributed photo.

Sapertein attended local public schools, graduated from Midwood High School and received a B.A. in metropolitan studies from New York University and then a J.D. from Syracuse University College of Law. After receiving his law degree, he earned an M.A. in deaf and hard of hearing education from Hunter College and a second M.A. in school leadership from Touro College.

While Saperstein has not officially received the Republican nod, Brooklyn GOP Chairman Ted Ghorra appears to like his running.

“While our screenings are still ongoing, my Brooklyn GOP colleagues and I are excited about Steve’s candidacy. He can speak to the entire district, has a proven record of caring accomplishments, has been active in the community, and presents a clean and responsible break from the corrupt self-dealing of the Democrats who have held this seat,” said Ghorra.

Saperstein is also seeking and likely to receive the support and endorsement of the Conservative, Independence and Reform parties. Other possible Republican candidates are local district leader Lucretia Regina-Potter and Liam McCabe, who indicated in a Facebook post he is not running.

Saperstein is also seeking the support and endorsement of the Conservative, Independence and Reform parties.

“When the news broke about Pamela Harris, it was tough to process,” says Saperstein. “The district, our neighbors, deserve better. It took a lot of soul-searching to finally say, ‘yes’ – I’m doing this. Elina and I have a young daughter, but she understands why her dad is out campaigning.”

On the Democratic side, the only declared candidate thus far is Coney Island Community activist Mathylde Frontus.

The state primary election is Sept. 13, and the general election is Nov. 6.