Farah Louis Wins The 45th City Council District Special Election

Farah Win
Assemblywoman Rodneyse BIchotte, City Council member-elect Farah Louis and Male Democratic District Leader Josue Pierre. Photo credit Kelly Mena.
City Councilmember-elect Farah Louis

Farah Louis, the Haitian-American former deputy chief of staff for now Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, won handily in a crowded field of eight candidates to fill Williams’ vacant seat in the 45th City Council district.   

According to the unofficial votes from the NYC Board of Elections (NYC BOE), Louis won with 48.81% or 3,861 votes to easily best second-place finisher Monique Chandler-Waterman who had a respectable  30.21% or 2,790 vote. Jovia Radix finished with 9.19% or 849 votes, to round out the top three.

“I am truly, truly grateful. This win is about the community and for the community. All of us coming together. I never expected this outcome. I was scared out of my mind. I knew that it would be a big undertaking and I knew it would be difficult and I knew it would be challenging but I am just so grateful,” said Louis.

Photo courtesy NYC Board of Elections.
Rodneyse Bichotte
Assemblymember Rodneyse Bichotte

The race was something of a proxy battle between Assemblywoman Rodneyse Bichotte (D-Ditmas Park, Flatbush), who strongly backed Louis, while Williams strongly backed Chandler-Waterman. But in the end, Bichotte not only guided Louis to victory, but served notice she is a political heavyweight to be reckoned with.

“It means a lot to me. It means that when you put in the hard-work, you definitely find positive results. We believed in a unified front,” said Bichotte.

“It’s a matter of putting your smarts together, putting your skills together, not sleeping, sacrificing because it is important. We are changing people’s lives. We won this race fair and square, it was a unified and diversified voters, not just Haitians. That was a narrative that was constructed by others,” she added.

Louis, also won with strong support from among others, Kings County Democratic Party boss Frank Seddio and City Council Member Justin Brannan (D-Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, Bath Beach, Bensonhurst).

City Council members Chaim Deutsch (D-Brighton Beach, Manhattan Beach, Marine Park, Midwood, Sheepshead Bay) and Kalman Yeger (D-Bensonhurst, Borough Park, Gravesend, Kensington, Midwood) also played strong roles in the contest in helping to turn out the sizable Orthodox Jewish vote in the district for Louis.

This includes Deutsch and Yeger’s role working with the Flatbush Jewish Community Council, which one source said was responsible for Louis receiving over 1,000 votes from the Orthodox Jewish community.

Louis will serve the remainder of the term for the 45th Council District until Dec. 31. Depending on whether she faces any primary challenger next month or in the November general election will decide if she will hold onto the seat until 2021.

Though a June 25 primary is coming, Louis’ strong win could be a tough obstacle to overcome, though all eight candidates are eligible to run.