Disappointment, Gratitude & Pride

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It is easy to be gracious in victory. The test is whether we are gracious in defeat.

Rob Astorino and I have disagreed on many issues, but throughout this campaign, I have respected his skills as a competitor. I know that he and his family have sacrificed for his service. And as citizens of this great county, all of us should wish him success as he governs Westchester for the next four years. Please join me in giving Rob Astorino a round of applause.

For my part, as the saying goes, I’m too old to cry, and it hurts too much to laugh. But despite my disappointment this evening, I am also filled with gratitude.

I could not have asked more from an incredible staff, who applied themselves to the campaign with intensity and drive, who supported each other as a true team, and who committed themselves to this cause for all the right reasons.

I could not have asked more from old friends and new friends who extended themselves beyond any reasonable claim or expectation, who gave of their time and energy and money and, above all, gave of their trust in remarkable ways.

And I could not have asked more from colleagues in government and politics and labor, who stood up to be counted, who took risks to be part of our effort. I do not take that for granted.

Running against a well-liked and well-financed incumbent is always a tough challenge. The fact that we came as close as we did is a tribute to the extraordinary effort and dedication of so many people here. This was your campaign.

The regret I feel tonight is not for myself, because this has been a remarkable experience, filled with moments that I will always remember and people whom I’ve come to admire. And I get to return to a job that I love, serving the people of New Rochelle.

My regret is that I wasn’t able to bring home the victory that each of you deserved – and that we won’t have an opportunity to make a difference for all the people in our county who need an advocate and a champion. There is so much I wanted to do, and that work will have to wait.

Lastly, I want to thank my family.

My brothers, who have been incredible sources of encouragement, making up for all those times they beat me up when we were younger.

My mother, who after every debate and television appearance could always be counted upon to declare, without any bias whatsoever, that her son was “absolutely magnificent.”

Jeremy and Owen, who were very patient with a dad who was hardly around, who were – mostly – helpful to mom, and who had the good sense to laugh about all those mean ads on television.

Most of all, my wife Catie. It’s not easy to be a candidate in a race of this scale, but it’s much, much harder to be a candidate’s spouse, particularly a spouse with a demanding career of her own. And Catie has borne the entirely unfair burdens of the past year with understanding and grace and only occasional assistance from a bottle of white wine. The best day of my life was the day Catie agreed to marry me, and I’m just lucky that she hasn’t figured out yet what a foolish decision that was.

It has been a long road, and I’ll admit that we’re ready to resume something resembling a normal state of affairs.

But I end this campaign more committed to public service than I have ever been.

And if I can leave you with just one request, it is not let the disappointment of a single evening discourage you from remaining engaged. For all the superficiality and theatrics of politics, there is also at its heart a majesty that is worth fighting for. Our values do not rise and fall on one victory or one defeat, they endure and take new form in every season and every debate. And the cause for which every one of us worked will be just as important tomorrow as it is today.

Thank you, and God bless you all.

Schumer, DiNapoli condemn Astorino for faking their endorsements

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United States Senator Chuck Schumer and New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli expressed outrage today after Republican Rob Astorino pretended to have their endorsements. They were joined by two Westchester County Legislators who Astorino had also falsely claimed to be endorsed by. This is not the first time during the campaign that Astorino has faked endorsements.

“I am supporting County Executive candidate Noam Bramson one-hundred percent, and am urging Westchester County voters, of all parties, to support him,” said US Senator Chuck Schumer.

“The Astorino campaign’s mailing was underhanded, dishonest and done completely without Senator Schumer’s knowledge. It tells you all you need to know about the character of those that approved it. Just like the bludgeon politics of government shutdown practiced by their Tea Party compatriots in DC, it won’t work.  The truth is voters are smart enough to know that Senator Schumer is supporting Noam Bramson for Westchester County Executive,” added Schumer spokeswoman Meredith Kelly.

“This Republican campaign literature misleads the voters of Westchester county into questioning who I am supporting for county executive,” said New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. “I want to set the record straight. I strongly support and endorse Noam Bramson for Westchester County Executive. Noam is an honest and dedicated public servant. He is willing to make the difficult decisions required of a true leader to rebuild the economy and strengthen local communities. Move Westchester in the right direction this Tuesday and vote for Noam Bramson and the Democratic slate on Tuesday.”

In a joint statement, Democratic County Legislators Mike Kaplowitz and Virginia Perez also condemned Astorino for pretending to have their support. “We practice bipartisanship and believe in working with everyone, but Rob Astorino has crossed the line. We did not give authorization to use our pictures and our words on this campaign mailer. Let us make this very clear: We’re proud to support Noam Bramson as our next County Executive.”

The Astorino campaign has been repeatedly censured by the Fair Campaign Practices Committee for making untrue statements during this campaign, has previously faked endorsements from pastors, and has recently begun inventing negative quotes from Mayor Bramson to use on its campaign literature.

Noam endorsed by the New York Times!

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Here’s some great news four days out from an election: The New York Times has just endorsed Noam! The Times made abundantly clear what’s at stake in this election, writing that there’s “a starker divide, between responsible governing and recklessness” dividing Noam and Rob:

“Mr. Astorino’s obstinacy has brought the county to the brink of contempt charges and cost it millions in federal housing funds.”
“Mr. Bramson, New Rochelle’s mayor since 2006, has the skills and vision needed to run the county well. He makes a strong case that Mr. Astorino’s spending cuts — to the planning department, mental health services and child care support, among other things — have done damage. So has the self-destructive battle over fair housing, which Mr. Bramson promises to end. We recommend Mr. Bramson.”

Noam is endorsed by the New York Times! This is a huge boost for our campaign, but we can’t get complacent with just 70 hours left before the polls open. There are three things you can do right now to help us out. 1) Forward the endorsement to your friends and neighbors. 2) Sign up for a get out the vote shift today to spread the word over the phone or in person. 3) Donate $20 or more today to help support our volunteers who will be spreading this message. Let’s win this together!

Bramson and Borgia slam County Republican plot to disenfranchise nuns, suppress the vote

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At a press conference and rally outside Ossining Town Hall this morning, Democratic County Executive Candidate and New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson joined County Legislator Catherine Borgia in condemning a recently defeated attempt by the Republican Party to disenfranchise a convent of nuns in Ossining. The effort, led by self-proclaimed Tea Party candidate Peter Tripodi with the full support of Westchester County Republican Chairman Doug Colety, was defeated in court yesterday.

Rob Astorino has wholeheartedly endorsed Mr. Tripodi, and was holding a rally on his behalf on the very same day Mr. Tripodi was arguing in court to disenfranchise the Maryknoll Sisters.

“Rob Astorino and his Tea Party allies are pushing the same voter suppression tactics we’ve seen from the national Republican Party,” said Mayor Noam Bramson. “There are some complaints that the Fair Campaign Practices Committee can rule on, but when you try to stop nuns for voting where they have lived for a century, you’d better be worried about a higher authority.”

“Trying to gain a political advantage at the expense of the Maryknoll Sisters was utterly disgraceful ” said Legislator Borgia. “Peter Tripodi should be ashamed of himself for trying to suppress the votes of these wonderful women who’ve dedicated their lives to service. There’s no place for this type of dirty tricks politicking in Westchester, particularly at the expense of the Maryknoll Sisters”

Astorino’s Latest Lies

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Dear Friends,

With five days to go, Rob Astorino is ending his campaign as he began it — with a barrage of lies. Back in August, the non-partisan Fair Campaign Practices Committee caught Mr. Astorino in five lies. Last night, they found against him on seven additional claims. And now, as his campaign becomes more desperate, the lies become even more outrageous.

In mail sent to thousands of households just yesterday, Rob quotes me as saying “suburbia is unsustainable,” when, in fact, I said the exact opposite.

Rob accused me of “defending the federal government’s radical plan to dismantle zoning,” when, in fact, the very idea such a plan exists is a Tea Party fantasy.

He says I’ve “pledged to raise taxes”, when, in fact, I’ve pledged to stick to the tax cap and to share services to cut our overall costs.

Take a look for yourself at Rob’s dishonest mail below.

I am very confident running on the truth, because the facts in this election are on our side. By contrast, it’s clear that Rob Astorino can’t handle the truth – the truth that his record comes out of the Tea Party wing of the Republican Party and is wrong for Westchester.

But I need your help over these last few days to make sure your friends and neighbors know the truth. Please write to them — right now — to share this information. If you haven’t already, send your friends an email about this election (maybe this sample email we suggested to you earlier this week). Make sure you send them this link — https://noambramson.org/issues/truth-squad/ — so they know the facts about all the lies Astorino’s campaign has spread in the past few months.

Many thanks,

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Noam

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UFCW Local 1500, New York’s largest grocery workers union, endorses Noam Bramson

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UFCW 1500, the largest grocery workers union in New York State, has endorsed Noam Bramson for County Executive. The unions members will distribute fliers, which are attached, at unionized supermarkets across Westchester leading up to election day.

UFCW 1500

UFCW 1500

“Westchester County needs dedicated individuals committed to open and transparent governing if it is going to ask for the public’s trust. Noam Bramson is just that type of individual the residents of Westchester County are seeking to bring integrity and honesty to the County Executive’s Office” said Bruce W. Both. President of UFCW Local 1500.

“The members of Local 1500 know and trust that Noam Bramson will show a commitment to advocating for economic and social justice,” Both continued. “Whether it is supporting the organizing efforts of low-wage workers, bringing more supermarkets to underserved communities or simply advocating County policies that prioritize the working class, our members are confident Noam Bramson will stand side by side with them. UFCW Local 1500 is dedicated to seeing him elected,” Both concluded.

“I’m honored to stand with the men and women of UFCW Local 1500 as they fight for a stronger middle class,” said Mayor Bramson. “Men and women who work hard and play by the rules should have a real chance to succeed, and UFCW Local 1500 fights to ensure exactly that.”