Statement by NYPAN on False Smear of Cynthia Nixon by NY State Democratic Committee



Contacts: George Albro at (917) 864-9443 or Traci Strickland at (202) 329-4002

The Democratic Party is at a crucial point in history where we must stand together to defeat the party of Trump, to win back the House, and to gain control of the NY State Senate. It is absolutely reprehensible that the New York State Democratic Party would choose this time to issue a smear against gubernatorial candidate Cynthia Nixon, falsely accusing her of “anti-Semitism.” Cynthia Nixon is a loyal Democrat with a large following of loyal Democrats. We are in the last days of a heated primary and this action is highly damaging to our party.

The offensive mailer was apparently paid for by the state party, using donor-supported resources in support of Governor Cuomo, who has almost total control over the state party. This is certainly not the first time that state party resources have been used during a primary to support one of the candidates, which is highly inappropriate if not outright illegal.

This smear campaign against Cynthia Nixon has the potential to cause great damage to our party by disillusioning tens of thousands of would-be Democratic voters. These voters could easily conclude that Democrats are no different from Trump Republicans who routinely engage in the same tactics, and no one could blame them for coming to this conclusion.

In addition, this offensive mailer also serves to undercut the critical struggle against real instances of anti-Semitism, as well as undercutting the struggle to deal with racist attacks on people of color and immigrants in general. We must demand better from our leaders and our Democratic Party.

NYPAN is calling for the following actions to be taken immediately:

  1. Geoff Berman, head of the New York State Democratic Party, must be fired. His attempts to dismiss this as a “minor” mistake are laughable.

  2. Every current member of the New York State Democratic Committee, in whose name this smear was issued, must put out a public statement and communicate it to all Democrats in their districts, condemning the smear and disassociating themselves from it. Silence implies support. NYPAN will call on the voters in the Sept 13th primaries to vote against committeepersons on the ballot who fail to issue such a statement

  3. The Democratic National Committee must immediately undertake an investigation into this incident and determine who in the state party apparatus knew of and/or approved of this mailing. The DNC must then take appropriate action on their findings.

  4. The DNC must immediately appoint an administrator to oversee and assist the New York Congressional campaigns on behalf of the state party, as Governor Cuomo can not be trusted to lead this effort. Despite his rhetoric, Cuomo has no apparent interest in helping to elect Democrats. In the last eight years under his leadership, New York has had a net loss of four House seats to the Republicans.

  5. The New York State Democratic Committee must immediately pay for a mailing by the Nixon campaign, to all Democrats, correcting the record on this issue.

If Governor Cuomo and the New York State Democratic Committee care about the reputation of their party, about Democratic unity, and about anti-Semitism, they must demonstrate this immediately and publicly. With Trump in the White House, this is no time for putting personal political fortunes or primary rivalries above the needs of the people of New York.