Updated with more attendees!
A dozen male public officials shuttled between Williamsburg and Crown Heights last night to greet thousands of Hasidic constituents celebrating the 68th anniversary of their founding rabbi’s rescue from Nazi captivity. Brooklyn’s Satmar Hasidic community, which is split between two warring sects in a bitter succession battle, held concurrent events at the Marcy and Bedford armories for the holiday.
Mayoral candidates Bill Thompson, Bill de Blasio, and John Liu, Councilmembers Domenic Recchia and David Greenfield, State Senators Eric Adams and Daniel Squadron, Brooklyn Democratic Party Chairman Frank Seddio, and Rep. Hakeem Jeffries made the rounds among the vote-rich Orthodox enclave, while Councilman Steve Levin and former District Leader Lincoln Restler stayed among their respective Zali and Aroni sects that supported them in previous elections.
Women were not allowed on the floor at either event but Council Speaker Christine Quinn sent her campaign manager Michael DeLoach as her surrogate. It is unlikely either sect would allow Quinn to attend the annual event even if she were elected mayor because of the community’s religious practices separating the sexes. One Hasidic source said that Quinn would not be allowed inside but another Hasidic leader said the sect would “make accommodations” for her in the future.
But Councilwoman Letitia James, who represents parts of Bedford Stuyvesant and Crown Heights, visited both armories on Tuesday night. She was only allowed into the VIP entranceway and balcony above
the halls, and not onto the halls where the events took place.
Tags: Aronites, Bill De Blasio, Bill Thompson, Christine Quinn, David Greenfield, Domenic Recchia, eric adams, Hakeem Jeffries, Hasidic, John Liu, lincoln-restler, Michael DeLoach, Satmar, steve-levin, Zalmanites