After a contested, razor’s-edge recount, Lincoln Restler has lost his position as the Democratic district leader in Brooklyn’s 50th Assembly District to Vito Lopez-endorsed candidate Chris Olechowski. The final margin was 19 votes.
According to the New York Times, 90% of Olechowski’s votes came from Hasidic (and Lopez-influenced) districts, while Restler won 84% of the votes in the rest of the district, which includes parts of Fort Greene, Greenpoint, and Williamsburg.
In an email, Restler told us, “Well, this is a bummer, but I’m also excited and optimistic about the growing momentum among Williamsburg and Greenpoint residents to be more engaged in our community. In spite of this setback, progressive Brooklynites have been growing in influence and power over the past several months and we are going to continue to fight to ensure that every Brooklyn elected official is committed to putting the best interests of the community first.”
Restler added, “If I can ever be useful around the neighborhood, don’t hesitate to reach out to me.”
While we obviously concur that this is, indeed, a big bummer, we have a feeling this won’t be the last we’ll hear of Restler in local politics. And, if you happen to live in his district and are now feeling really, really guilty about forgetting to vote, just make sure you show up for that next big election, okay?
Follow Virginia K. Smith on Twitter @vksmith.