New York City

Robert Cornegy’s endorsements that weren’t

The City Council member claimed three endorsements for Brooklyn borough president that he hadn’t received.

New York City Council Member Robert Cornegy

New York City Council Member Robert Cornegy William Alatriste/New York City Council

In the crowded field to be the next Brooklyn borough president, New York City Council Member Robert E. Cornegy is increasingly standing out as the establishment choice. He has amassed a lengthy list of endorsements, including a number of state legislators, City Council colleagues and public-sector unions, and he enjoys the backing of many mainstays of the local machine, such as former Brooklyn Democratic Chair Frank Seddio and Assembly Member Erik Dilan. 

However, Cornegy’s campaign has inflated its endorsement count: three people who the campaign told City & State endorsed Cornegy have not done so. 

City & State requested a list of endorsements recently from Cornegy’s team for a recent story about the borough president race. The list the campaign shared over email included former Chair of Community Board 10 Joanne Seminara, District Leader Christopher McCreight, who is also chief of staff to Council Member Justin Brannan, and District Leader Josue Pierre, who is running to replace City Council Member Mathieu Eugene. 

After the story was published, City & State was contacted by sources stating that Seminara, McCreight and Pierre have not endorsed Cornegy for the race. 

A staffer for Assembly Member Jo Anne Simon’s campaign for borough president reached out to clarify that Seminara has not endorsed Cornegy, but has endorsed Simon for the race. City & State contacted Seminara, who confirmed that she has not endorsed Cornegy. She added, “I wholeheartedly support and endorse Jo Ann Simon.”

City & State contacted McCreight, who said, “I have not endorsed Cornegy for the race.”

Pierre’s campaign contacted City & State to say that Pierre has not endorsed Cornegy or anybody else for borough president. “I mean we’ve had conversations, but there was no ‘hey, I’m thinking of an endorsement’ or anything like that. So, I think there may have been some type of confusion, I don’t think they were trying to mislead someone,” said Pierre. 

Cornegy’s team said in an emailed statement that the errors were accidental. “In identifying the long list of elected officials, issue advocates and community leaders who enthusiastically endorse Robert E. Cornegy Jr for Brooklyn Borough President, there were a few individuals inadvertently included. The Cornegy campaign is proud of its strong support across Brooklyn, and hopes to earn the endorsements of these people as well in the course of this campaign.”