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Laurie Cumbo Wins 35th District City Council Race

By Janet Upadhye | September 11, 2013 8:36am
 Laurie Cumbo, who won the district seat with 35.4 percent of the vote, celebrated with family and friends at Milk River in Crown Heights. 
Laurie Cumbo Wins 35th District City Council Race
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FORT GREENE — Laurie Cumbo won the Democratic nomination for the District 35 City Council seat Tuesday night, ending a heated race against contenders Ede Fox, Olanike Alabi, Jelani Mashariki and Frank Hurley.

The Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts founder took the seat with 35.4 percent of the vote.

"I am overjoyed at the results," she said. "We had four very strong candidates who were also vying for this position and I want to congratulate them and celebrate them on a job well done."

Fox secured 26 percent of the vote, Alibi was on her heels with 25.9 percent, and Mashariki and Hurley captured 6.5 and 6.2 percent respectively.

Cumbo celebrated with her family, friends, and supporters at a victory party at Milk River in Crown Heights, where she told the crowd, "We will be a model for the entire world about what we can do when we work together, recognize our strengths, and build on our collective history."

The race for the council district seat became heated when a pro-development PAC, Jobs for New York, endorsed and spent upwards of $80,000 dollars on Cumbo's campaign.

But Cumbo publicly asserted that she did not want their support, nor would she be beholden to the group's agenda if she were elected.

"Whatever amount they’ve invested, whatever they’re trying to buy, they’re not going to get from me,” she said at a Sept. 6 debate sponsored by the AARP.

With no Republican candidate for the seat, Cumbo is guaranteed victory in the November general election. She will replace outgoing city council member Letitia James, who is currently in a heated race with Daniel Squadron for the position of Public Advocate.

Brooklyn's 35th Council District includes Fort Greene, Clinton Hill, and parts of Crown Heights, Prospect Heights and Bedford-Stuyvesant.