JACKSON HEIGHTS — State Sen. Jose Peralta is breaking from the Democratic party to join the Independent Caucus, saying it will allow him to "best affect progressive change" in his district.
He joins the IDC's founder, Sen. Jeff Klein, and six other members of the group which brokered a deal with Republican leaders in the senate to break from the Democratic senators back in 2010.
"The IDC’s track record on delivering for the most vulnerable New Yorkers is irrefutable," Peralta, who represents parts of Jackson Heights, Corona, Elmhurst and East Elmhurst, wrote in an emailed statement.
Late last year, the conference also picked up Sen. Jesse Hamilton of Brooklyn and Sen. Marisol Alcantara, who represents upper Manhattan and The Bronx.
IDC's leader, Sen. Jeff Klein, said Peralta "embodies the spirit of this conference’s drive to get real results for the people of New York."
Peralta was elected in 2010 and succeeds Hiram Monserrate, who also famously broke from the Democratic party in 2009.
Monserrate was a member of the "Gang of Four" and agreed to vote with other Republican members to elect ex-Sen. Dean Skelos as majority leader. Skelos was sentenced to five years in prison on corruption charges in May.