Rivera, Niou, Goldman Top Poll of 10th Congressional District; de Blasio Near Bottom

Map of the new 10th Congressional District.

By Reuvain Borchardt

NEW YORK — Carlina Rivera is leading a new poll of the Democratic primary race for the 10th congressional district, followed closely by Yuh-Line Niou and Dan Goldman, in a crowded field for a rare open congressional seat, in which Bill de Blasio, previously a presumed frontrunner, finds himself in seventh place.

Rivera, a councilwoman from the Lower East Side, leads the field with support of 17% of respondents, with Niou, an Assemblywoman from the Lower East Side, snagging 14%, and Goldman, a career prosecutor from Lower Manhattan, 12%. Goldman is a career prosecutor who has never held elected office, but who has money to spend as an heir to the Levi Strauss fortune and whose claim to fame is being a prosecutor in the first impeachment trial of then-President Donald Trump.

“Rivera’s lead is proof that voters are looking for an experienced, hard-working member of Congress who deeply understands New York City and delivers for the people who live here,” Rivera campaign advisor Evan Roth Smith told Hamodia. “From Boro Park to the Lower East Side, voters are supporting Rivera because she gets things done, serves constituents, and secures investment in housing, transit, health care, and social services for our neighborhoods. Every candidate for office makes promises, but Rivera has a record of results that stands up to scrutiny. Voters are seeing that.”

“We are seeing a groundswell of support from voters across the district for Dan’s thoughtful, common-sense leadership,” Goldman spokesman Kanter told Hamodia. “This poll comes before Dan has even started to use his fundraising advantage over his competitors, and shows a clear path to victory. As a Jew with an Orthodox wife, Dan understands the Boro Park community and looks forward to representing it in Congress.” 

The survey was conducted by progressive polling firm Data for Progress, and first released by City & State. The poll was conducted from July 7 to July 10, of 533 likely Democratic primary voters, and has a margin of error of 4 percentage points.

More than a dozen Democrats are vying for the rare open congressional seat, which covers Manhattan below 14th Street and portions of Brooklyn including Park Slope and Boro Park below 14th Avenue.

Elizabeth Holzman, who served in Congress from 1973-1981 and was later Brooklyn district attorney and New York City Comptroller, and will turn 81 next month, came in fourth place with 9%; followed by Brooklyn Assemblywoman Jo Anne Simon at 8%; U.S. Rep. Mondaire Jones, who is flush with campaign cash and decided to run for the 10th District following the recent redistricting despite currently representing an upstate district, came in sixth place with 7%; former New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio had 5%. Maud Maron, a former law professor and public defender who currently runs an organization that advocates for merit-based admissions in schools, had the support of just 1% of poll respondents, coming in last of the eight candidates polled — which is only about half the number of candidates in the race. Twenty-seven percent of respondents said they were unsure whom they would vote for.

De Blasio’s seventh-place showing showing comes despite — or perhaps because of — his having the best name recognition in the district. The former mayor also previously represented Park Slope and a portion of Boro Park in the City Council. The progressive de Blasio has come under criticism from some on the left who feel he didn’t govern progressively enough, and he has always been disliked by the right. However, he generally maintained warm ties with the politically conservative Orthodox Jewish community — though that relationship soured somewhat during the last two years of his mayoralty.

A whopping 72% of respondents say they have a somewhat unfavorable (23%) or very unfavorable (49%) view of de Blasio. None of the other polled candidates had a more than 13% unfavorable rating.

“Progressives appear to be abandoning de Blasio – wrong gender, wrong time,” veteran Democratic pollster Hank Sheinkopf told Hamodia, following release of the poll.

“Rivera and Niou benefit from their gender,” said Sheinkopf, arguing that in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s overturning Roe v. Wade, “there has been a groundswell of Democratic support for women’s rights and therefore female candidates.”

“The Working Families Party endorsement has been a big bump to Niou as well,” Sheinkopf continued. “Goldman has enough money to advertise, to get people the information, to tell people who he is. And informed people know he was counsel to the impeachment committee, which benefits him in this anti-Trump district.”

Niou has recently come under fire from Israel supporters for supporting the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, though this poll was conducted before those comments were publicized. Moreover Sheinkopf said those comments are “probably not a big issue in Park Slope and Lower Manhattan, where many people, including Jews, are progressive and support BDS.”

De Blasio met last month with a group of Boro Park activists, and is hoping to get their endorsement. Despite tensions over his management of the COVID pandemic and high crime during the last two years of his mayoralty, de Blasio is hoping the close relationship he built during the prior 18 years will win him their support.

One prominent Boro Park activist, who spoke to Hamodia on condition of anonymity, said de Blasio may ultimately get the endorsement, “but he would only be considered if he shows he can be in the mix. Nobody’s going to endorse someone in seventh place.”

Sheinkopf said such an endorsement, “would give de Blasio a boost – but only if people turn out to vote.  It’ll be problematic to get a big turnout in Boro Park during August. We haven’t had a congressional election in August in a long time.”

Primary day is August 23.


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