Angelo Maragos, the Republican candidate for the District 26 council seat, has started running attack ads against his Democratic opponent Jimmy Van Bramer, as the November 3 election nears.
The change in strategy follows a series of weeks in which Maragos and his volunteers have been blanketing the neighborhood with political placards and have been handing out leaflets at subway platforms.
Maragos’ attack ads attempt to link Van Bramer to special interest groups. Last week, they claimed that professional preservationists, supported by Van Bramer, have confiscated the property rights of Sunnyside Garden’s residents by imposing “landmark” status upon them. The ad claimed that residents did not get to vote on the landmark designation; therefore, special interests groups are now able to dictate what they can do with their property.
This week Maragos is linking Van Bramer to ACORN, arguing “that he must come clean and fully explain his past and present connection.” He points to past Van Bramer ads, where Van Bramer allegedly said he was endorsed by ACORN
The attack ads come at a time when Maragos’ underdog status is becoming more and more apparent. He has only received about 1/3 the amount as his rival in campaign contributions, has just one political endorsement, and is in District 26 where Democrats outnumber Republicans by 5 to 1.
Maragos has raised $33,000, compared to Van Bramer’s $92,000, according to filings with the New York City Campaign Finance Board earlier this month. Furthermore, with Van Bramer’s campaign fundraiser at Dazies last week, attending by all the senior Democrats, that gap is most likely to widen.
And while Van Bramer has gathered endorsements from US Sen. Chuck Schumer, Council Speaker Christine Quinn to his Democratic primary opponent Deirdre Feerick—Maragos hasn’t even got the backing of Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Maragos’ staff said he doesn’t anticipate getting the mayor’s endorsement, since Maragos opposed Bloomberg’s decision to overturn term limits.
Maragos was endorsed by NY state Sen. Marty Golden, a Republican senator from Brooklyn, earlier this week. Golden will be at his 45-04 Skillman Ave. headquarters on Sunday between 2:00 and 2:30 pm.