Already the frontrunner to succeed Rep. Edolphus "Ed" Towns in the newly created 8th Congressional District, Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries, D-Fort Greene, can add another moniker to his growing political resume:
The New York Times on Sunday named the three-term Democrat as one of its 10 influential political stars, joining a list that includes New York Police Department commissioner Ray Kelly, Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
Hailing from Central Brooklyn, Jeffries is a rising star in the Democratic Party—helping to craft legislation in Albany banning police from collecting data gained from .
Jeffries has also been an advocate for affordable housing, speaking out against efforts to dismantle rent control protections and maintaining a critical stance against development projects receiving public funds, such as Atlantic Yards.
In its selection of Jeffries, The Times hinted that the Democrat could be an entirely new kind of candidate—one who could unite a changing Brooklyn electorate.
"This is an opportunity for a new generation of African-American leaders to emerge who can advance the interests of our community but appeal to a broader group of individuals," he told The Times.
However, to do that, Jeffries will first have to defeat a formidable, if under-funded, adversary in Councilman Charles Barron, D-East New York, in an electoral matchup next month.
The Democratic Primary will be held June 26.