Why Eric Adams can’t defeat AOC and socialists destroying NYC


The successful recall of the hard-left San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin was met with a sigh of relief among people concerned about public safety. “At last,” read a thousand opeds from coast to coast, “the pendulum is swinging back, and the Socialists are on the run nationwide.” 

Not so fast. Boudin’s defeat — while great news for normal people and a setback for the forces of chaos that have seized control of the nation’s cities — will not derail the Leftist program of sabotage that has accelerated the crime rate faster than ever before, especially in Gotham. 

It’s tempting to draw conclusions about the future of Democratic politics — that is to say, politics — in New York from the recall of Boudin, and to imagine that the Left is reeling. But any comparisons are misleading.  

For one thing, New York doesn’t have recalls, so there’s no chance of dislodging Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg or Bronx DA Darcel Clark anytime soon. Governor Hochul in theory could remove a failing district attorney, but the chances of that happening are slim. 

After just two years of unpopular far-left policies, San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin was recalled by his city's voters earlier this month.
After just two years of unpopular far-left policies, San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin was recalled by his city’s voters earlier this month.
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Some have looked to Mayor Adams’ war of words with Democratic Socialist Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as a sign that traditional Democrats are putting their crazy cousins back in the attic. Ocasio-Cortez and Adams are fighting a proxy war in two state assembly primary races, where Leftist upstarts are challenging Dem stalwarts Inez Dickens in Harlem and Michael Benedetto in the Bronx. 

But if two veteran Democrats need to bring in the big guns to fight their primary challenges, in what sense does that signal strength? Inez Dickens has been a significant political presence in her district for 50 years, and has easily beaten back primary challenges in the past. If she needs to get the mayor involved to fend off a challenge from the Left, that means she’s running scared. Ditto for the 75-year old Benedetto, whose district has become significantly less white and more Hispanic since he was first elected in 2005, and who is in dire trouble. 

Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez is battling it out with Eric Adams over a pair of state assembly primary races.
Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez is battling it out with Eric Adams over a pair of state assembly primary races.
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It’s true that the Socialists in the city council failed to achieve all their priorities in the first budget under new leadership. But they did push Speaker Adrienne Adams to expand spending, including hundreds of millions of additional dollars on rental vouchers. They also managed to defeat a council vote asking Albany to sweeten police pensions in the face of a tsunami of retirements; this was the first time in at least 25 years that a floor vote was defeated. 

The council’s Progressive Caucus, formed in 2010, used to have just a handful of members. Now, with 34 councilmembers, the Progs comprise a veto-proof supermajority. In theory, they can pass anything they want. The caucus also just hired an extremist anti-Israel activist, Emily Mayer, as its “director”; her husband, Waleed Shahid, works for Justice Democrats, the gang behind the election of Ocasio-Cortez and her “Squad” colleagues. 

Longtime assembly-members Inez Dickens of Harlem and Michael Benedetto of The Bronx are facing more radical challengers backed by AOC.
Longtime assembly-members Inez Dickens of Harlem and Michael Benedetto of The Bronx are facing more radical challengers backed by AOC.
Getty Images; Hans Pennink

Mayer was slotted into her new job by our hard-Left Comptroller Brad Lander. Lander joined the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) 30 years ago and considers himself a member to this day. He supports DSA-backed candidates in New York and across the nation.  

Lander has written of his hopes that the real estate market in NYC crashes. Then, Lander prays, the city can seize all the abandoned buildings for unpaid taxes and give them to the non-profit organizations that he relies on for his political support.  

Despite their ruinous, soft-on-crime policies, Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg and Bronx DA Darcel Clark won't face a recall anytime soon; New York law doesn't allow it.
Despite their ruinous, soft-on-crime policies, Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg and Bronx DA Darcel Clark won’t face a recall anytime soon; New York law doesn’t allow it.
AP; REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz

The comptroller’s wife, incidentally, runs Nonprofit New York, an umbrella group for these rent-seeking groups. It’s no accident that since becoming comptroller Brad Lander has made “prompt payment” to these often corrupt or useless organizations a top priority.  

Far from a spent force, the DSA and its allies in New York politics and government are alive and well and promoting their destructive policies just as aggressively as ever.  

NYC Councilmember Brad Lander joined the Democratic Socialists of America more than 30 years ago — no surprise he wants to redistribute NYC real estate to social housing organizations.
NYC Councilmember Brad Lander joined the Democratic Socialists of America more than 30 years ago — no surprise he wants to redistribute NYC real estate to social housing organizations.
Getty Images

We must understand that the hard Left sees its setbacks and losses as strategic. They propose extreme measures — like defunding the police or making housing free — knowing that they will fail, for now.  

But they get their ideas out in public, and when the dust has settled, we scarcely notice that they have gained a few inches of precious ground in their fight to make society less free, less prosperous and more dangerous. 

New Yorkers who care about the future of their city must shun complacency. While we sleep, the Left is brewing up plans to destroy everything we cherish. 

Seth Barron (@sethbarronnyc) is managing editor of The American Mind and the author of “The Last Days of New York” (Humanix).





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