Justin Brannan Wins South Brooklyn City Council Race

A moderate Democrat who is among the New York City Council’s most powerful members beat his Republican opponent on Tuesday, according to The Associated Press. By prevailing in the southern Brooklyn race, Democrats held a council seat that had shown signs of drifting away from their control.

The Democrat, Justin Brannan, the Council’s finance chairman, defeated Ari Kagan, who was elected to the Council as a Democrat in 2021, but left the party last year and quickly adopted Republican stances on issues such as abortion and crime.

The two incumbents wound up running in the same South Brooklyn district as a result of a once-in-a-decade redistricting process that saw all 51 Council seats up for re-election.

Democrats overwhelmingly control the City Council, and many ran unopposed on Tuesday — including Yusef Salaam, one of the so-called Central Park Five defendants who won a hotly contested Council primary in Harlem this past summer.

But Republicans were hoping to flip a seat or two, with Mr. Kagan and a candidate in the Bronx, Kristy Marmorato, thought to be their best hopes. Ms. Marmorato, an X-ray technician running on the Republican and Conservative lines, was challenging Marjorie Velázquez, the Democratic incumbent in the northern Bronx.

The growth in the size and political influence of the Asian American community were also reflected on this year’s ballot.

In a new southern Brooklyn district that was created as part of the redistricting process to account for the growth of that community, Susan Zhuang, a Democrat and the chief of staff for William Colton, an assemblyman, faced Ying Tan, the Republican.

In northern Queens, the Republican incumbent, Vickie Paladino, defeated Tony Avella, a Democrat and former council member, in a rematch from two years ago.

Inna Vernikov, a Republican who was recently charged with openly displaying a gun on her hip at a pro-Palestine rally where she was a counterprotester, easily defeated two candidates in another South Brooklyn district.

Melinda Katz, the Queens district attorney and a moderate Democrat, also won easily over Michael Mossa, the Republican nominee. Mr. Mossa tried unsuccessfully to paint Ms. Katz as a far-left progressive who was soft on crime.

Voters also considered two statewide ballot measures that would allow local governments to increase their debt limits for building sewage-treatment plants and for school districts in small cities to improve their physical properties.

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