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Jeffries Tops Barron in the 8th Congressional District Primary

Democrat poised to succeed longtime Rep. Edolphus "Ed" Towns in Congress.

A journey that began with for a possible run against a 30-year Congressional veteran ended Tuesday night with a resounding victory against a 13-year veteran of the City Council.

According to the Associated Press, Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries, D-Brooklyn, has won the 8th Congressional District Democratic primary against challenger Charles Barron—a triumph that should pave the way for a November victory.

As of late Tuesday night, Jeffries led with 72 percent of the vote over Barron with 94 percent of precincts reporting, the AP said.

"All of the political pundits said this would be a close race," Jeffries told the packed room at Clinton Hill's Sanders Studios in his victory speech. "That was before the people had spoken."

He went on to thank his wife, his two sons and a campaign team that ran a race short on mistakes.

In his victory speech, Jeffries vowed to stand up for seniors, schoolchildren and President Barack Obama in Washington, D.C.

"I think he's doing a great job," Jeffries said of the President. "Brooklyn is sending a message that help is on the way."

In attendance at Jeffries' victory party was Public Advocate Bill DeBlasio, former city Comptroller and mayoral candidate Bill Thompson and a packed house of enthusiastic supporters.

"He's a serious and meaningful guy...who is going to help us move this city forward," DeBlasio said.

At Barron's campaign event in Bed-Stuy, the mood was understandably much more subdued as it became clear that the night belonged to Jeffries.

"When we lodged this campaign we knew that we were going to be up against powerful opposition," Barron told his supporters. "Never in the annals of the political history of this state has the candidate had to go against the entire New York National Democratic political leadership—Gov. [Andrew] Cuomo had to do robo-calls."

Based on early returns, it appeared that Barron trailed Jeffries even in East New York, where his council district is centered.

In his remarks, Barron struck a defiant note in regards to his opponent.

"At the risk of sounding like a sore loser, honesty compels me to say there will be no congratulatory statements to the opposition tonight only because the way the campaign was run and the things they did, the character assasination," he said of Jeffries. "And the opponent didn't stand up and say, 'I have enough money, I have enough backing to win—don't do that to another black man in front of the entire nation.' ... Not to do that shows a lack of character."

Outside his campaign event, Jeffries told reporters that it was the "chattering class" that made the race seem closer than Tuesday's election results indicated. 

"There is not a single part of this district in which we didn't do well," he said.

Amy Sara Clark contributed reporting.

Sharon June 27, 2012 at 05:29 PM
Jeffries is a Democratic Party hack, which is why he got the endorsements he did. He stands for his own advancement at the expense of ever taking a principled stand on any issue. He sat on the fence during years of fighting against the Atlantic Yards wipeout of Prospect Heights, and when Ratner won, he joined in with the church groups trying to get affordable housing from Ratner. Ratner could care less. He's gotten what he wants and can afford to ignore the black churches because he's bought off the people with expensive basketball. No doubt Ratner will comp Jeffries to a game now and then. Barron, on the other hand, is unafraid of being the lone voice on an issue. It's too bad he's so careless about what he says. He should be gracious in defeat.
Ladylove3 June 27, 2012 at 05:32 PM
Are you serious, xpressing support for brutal dictators and kleptocrats with anti-American views when there are probrably some in your neighbothood who support ansd say those very same things. Freedom of speech. Let's not lose sight and appreciate when you can stand up for your convictions as an American, but have to be so tolerent when others say the same thing. Unfortunately, the bigtime DC is part of the problem with the aggression and division that is so prevelent in Washington today.
M Davis June 28, 2012 at 03:39 AM
ConfusedDoug: "His association with the Black Panthers, essentially the flip side of the Tea Party, didn't help him either at a time when people are fed up with the aggression and division so prevalent in Washington today." That is the most idiotic comment in this forum. The Black Panthers fought for the betterment of Black people suffering under the yoke of white racism and bigotry. The teabagger/Republicans have revived their racist attacks by lying about President Obama's heritage and the progressive policies he supports. I take your comment as a smear-job at Charles Barron's 1969 membership in the Black Panther Party. I supported the work done in the Black communities by the BBP in that era. I would argue that the Democratic Party needs more members who are aggressive and confrontational in their political presentation against the teabag/Republicans. Charles Barron would have been a great addition to the progressive side, as things stand today, the Republicans are winning the war of words by lying on policy issues and using their propaganda networks to keep large numbers of poor and working class whites ignorant of their economic reality.
M Davis June 28, 2012 at 04:39 AM
I voted for Charles Barron for the reasons you stated in your second sentence. In retrospect, I believe Barron ran a lackluster campaign in the 8th-CD, I didn't see him at the subway stations, I didn't hear Barron's political messages coming from bullhorns mounted on vehicles, and Barron's website wasn't working properly when I tried to donate or send a message to his campaign. And the voter turnout in the district was pitiful! In theory the 8th Congressional District in NY State contains about 654,000 citizens - and fewer than 40,000 voters voted in the Democratic Primary yesterday. Apathy and ignorance is bad for democracy. I thought the Jefferies ad that showed Barron levitating down the City Hall steps humorous.
Carol Davis June 28, 2012 at 03:14 PM
Come on, you only saw Jeffries' signs on NYC's lamposts and not Barron's?? Let's focus on the bigger issues -- please.

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