Endorsement: Dana Balter for the Democratic Nomination for Congress

When Dana Balter announced her candidacy for the Democratic Party’s nomination to challenge incumbent Republican John Katko, she went through the traditional process. Dana reached out to democrats in the 4 county region that comprise the 24th Congressional District.

Countless events were attended and planned by the candidates team, challengers who were certainly qualified to run stepped aside giving Balter a clear path to the nomination. Leading up to the final days before filing deadlines the proverbial ducks were in a row for a candidate that did everything the party requires.

It takes time and effort to piece together a 4 county coalition, with a Progressive candidate as the leader. Organizing Progressives is akin to herding cats, it’s not easy. However, Dana Balter managed to achieve that seemingly impossible task, uniting the local Democratic Party heading into the Fall campaign.

Suddenly, things changed, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, decided they didn’t like the selection made by the local Democratic Party.  Juanita Perez Williams became their newly minted candidate, fresh from her defeat in the Mayoral race by Independent Ben Walsh in a Democratic Party stronghold, Syracuse. Until she changed her mind, Williams was a Dana Balter supporter, donating money, attending functions and participating in the petitioning process on behalf of the Progressive candidate.

Juanita Perez Williams candidacy brings to mind a story from the 1980’s. This is a story about a young woman, who was declared winner of the 1980 Boston Marathon, but failed to run the entire course. It was noted at the time she wasn’t covered in sweat, not even panting. It was soon discovered she also “ran” the New York Marathon. An investigation recalled seeing the woman on the subway during parts of the famous grueling New York race.  With the support of the DCCC Juanita jumped to the political marathon finish line, sprinkled with bead-lets of manufactured sweat.

This is the Juanita Perez Williams “1980 Boston Marathon” moment. Entering the congressional race, barley one week after pledging to support Dana Balter, Williams executed a brilliant political gymnastic move. With help from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, Juanita Perez Williams performed a political Aerial Cartwheel, before the Gluten-free crackers and dairy free cheese from the Balter fundraiser could digest. Her late entry into the campaign is the ultimate stab in the back move, the fundraiser appearance, donation and petitioning support, was an insincere effort.

If this race were about character only, Dana Balter would be the candidate to support. In 7 minutes Balter can explain to you what she stands for, what her goals are as a Congressperson. She also pivots to stating emphatically, “I’m going to represent the constituents of the 24th Congressional District.”  At every step of the way, the Dana Balter campaign has sent information to urbancny.com regarding where the candidate stands on the issues, we proudly pass along information from any campaign regardless of party affiliation.

If you check our site we have voluminous information from Congressman John Katko. Every Congressional Art Competition, every major piece of legislation; his office makes sure we receive a copy and we pass it on as a service to our readers. Throughout this campaign, we have not received one sentence from Juanita Perez Williams, not even enough letters to recognize a phrase on Wheel of Fortune. The National Democrats have run the numbers and have simply taken for granted and already counted the Syracuse African American vote as a given. It’s not. People haven’t voted yet.

You don’t get away with disparaging elected African-American leadership in Syracuse, which JPW has done in the past. It’s going to take more than an extreme political makeover, a change in political commercials re-branded with another way of saying, “I’m a fighter” to win this election, come November.

Yes, Juanita Perez Williams is a fighter, what she’s fighting and who she’s fighting for, remains a mystery.  For the aforementioned reasons it would be well advised to cast your vote for Dana Balter in the Democratic Party Primary on June 26th.