Heard Around Town

Lawmakers hold rally in support of Adams response to asylum-seekers

The elected officials pushed back on critiques that the mayor is anti-immigrant.

Supporters of Eric Adams held a rally Tuesday afternoon.

Supporters of Eric Adams held a rally Tuesday afternoon. Annie McDonough

New York hearts Eric Adams. That’s the message that was delivered by a handful of state lawmakers, faith leaders and others at a rally outside City Hall on Tuesday. 

The pro-Adams event, billed as a “rally to call out those for unfair attacks on Mayor Eric Adams over migrant crisis and NYC budget cuts,” turned out to be exactly that. 

“We need to ask why, at this time of crisis, certain elected officials are calling out the mayor as anti-immigrant. We all know that’s not true,” said Assembly Member Jenifer Rajkumar, a highly visible ally of the mayor. 

Other lawmakers at the rally included Assembly Members Rodneyse Bichotte Hermelyn and David Weprin, state Sen. James Sanders and City Council Member Rafael Salamanca. The Rev. Al Sharpton didn’t appear, but a statement from him in support of Adams was read out to a decent sized crowd in City Hall Park.

The rally followed Adams’ comment last week that the issue of the migrant crisis “will destroy New York City,” a remark that progressive lawmakers quickly denounced and Republicans eagerly praised. 

It wasn’t just unnamed elected officials accused of trying to score political points over those comments who were targets of ire at Tuesday’s rally. The media was also called out for what some speakers called unfair coverage of the city’s handling of the migrant crisis.

While Adams himself was not in attendance, Manuel Castro, the commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs spoke in defense of the mayor and called for federal support. “To those who are calling Mayor Adams anti-immigrant, look at the facts,” Castro said. “In under two years, this mayor has done more for immigrant communities than any mayor in modern history.”