Senate GOP Map Puts Lew Fidler in John Sampson’s District [Updated]

fidler new district Senate GOP Map Puts Lew Fidler in John Sampsons District [Updated]
Councilman Fidler's house is attached to Senator Sampson's district (Photo: LATFOR)

The Senate Republicans are not taking any chances when it comes to Democratic Councilman Lew Fidler’s special election candidacy. In their redistricting maps this afternoon, they took his southern Brooklyn home and placed him awkwardly in Senate Minority Leader John Sampson’s district.

Councilman Fidler is currently running in a competitive special election to replace outgoing State Senator Carl Kruger, but even if he’s victorious, he’ll be facing an extremely challenging situation with very few good options if the Senate Republican’s draft proposal withstands court challenges and a possible gubernatorial veto.

Mr. Sampson’s district, which is majority African-American and overwhelmingly based in eastern Brooklyn, would likely be an almost impossible challenge for Mr. Fidler. The rest of Mr. Kruger’s former district is chopped up and divided between Senator Diane Savino’s Staten Island-based district, Republican State Senator Marty Golden and a new district based in the heavily Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods of Boro Park and Midwood.

Should the map stand, which is a big if, Mr. Fidler would likely have to decide between running in that extremely conservative Orthodox district or entering the campaign against Senator Golden. As his home would be in neither district, the situation would be quite complicated indeed.

Update: Councilman Lew Fidler’s campaign sends in a response from the candidate:

“These maps are exactly why we need independent redistricting.  It’s one of the many reasons I’m proud to have the support of Mayor Ed Koch, who has been leading the fight to reform Albany.

It’s unfortunate the same Senate Republicans who signed Mayor Koch’s pledge for independent redistricting have drawn lines that are disgustingly partisan in nature.  It is exactly this kind of cynicism that has voters disillusioned and disgusted… politics at its very worst.

The maps for the March 20th Special Election stand as is.  Whatever ultimately happens with the lines, I will be running for re-election to the State Senate this November from a district that includes neighborhoods that currently dominate the 27th Senate District.”

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