Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Primary Predictions

By Robert Press

BRONX, NEW YORK, September 3- Before we give you our primary day predictions, a little news first. 

We told you back in May of this year that the MTA was preparing for East Bronx Metro North train service into mid Manhattan. We also said that this service would be going into Penn Station (not Grand Central Station) with stops at four East Bronx communities Coop-City, Morris Park, Parkchester, and Hunts Point. The first meeting on this will take place in Morris Park on Monday, September 10 at the Price Center/Block Pavilion auditorium at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University, 1300 Morris Park Avenue (at the intersection of Eastchester Road). An open house will begin at 6:30 p.m, followed by a presentation on the project at 7 p.m. Other community meetings will take place on September 24th in Coop-City, October 2nd in Hunts Point, and on October 24th in Morris Park. All meetings will open at 6:30 p.m and start at 7 p.m.

Since Madonna will be performing at Yankee Stadium, the 161st Street BID is having a Madonna look alike contest before the concert on September 8th. You can go to my blog for more details and to see photos of the contestants at You can also see coverage of 87th A.D. candidate Luis Sepulveda's fund raiser last week, Senator Jeff Klein's Gloria Gaynor Concert, the growing scandal of Assemblywoman Naomi Rivera, and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver's admission of maybe doing the wrong thing in approving an alleged $103,000 payment to hush up a Vito Lopez (Brooklyn's now former Democratic County Leader) scandal.

We sit down occasionally to interview elected officials on different topics, and last week we sat down with State Senator Gustavo Rivera 33rd State Senate District to discuss his September Democratic Primary campaign. Gustavo knows that he has a sort of well funded challenger, but is confident that he will be re-elected by the voters of his district. We spoke of the changes to his district where his union support in Van Cortlandt Village, as well as most of Bedford Park and Norwood where he was very strong was redistricted to a different senator. Gustavo picked up more areas to the south of where his district is, which is where his primary challenger is from. Gustavo also said that the current scandals involving Naomi Rivera (same last name, but no relation) should not affect him as he now has only three election districts in the 80th A.D. as compared to before redistricting. The Bronx Democratic County organization has backed Gustavo, and the morning of the interview Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. was out campaigning with Gustavo. He would not give me a figure on his margin of victory, but said that I would not be disappointed with the numbers.

The Bronx Democratic County Annual Barbecue will be held on Sat. Sept. 8th in front of the county Headquarters located on Blondell Avenue at the corner of Eastchester Road starting at 12 PM.

On to our predictions- First in the 33rd State Senate District the only contested state senate district in the Bronx we see the current state senator being re-elected by a 66 – 34 percent margin.

In the Civil Court Judge race we see Eddie McShan winning by at least a 3 – 1 margin, especially with all the backing he has of almost every elected official in the Bronx.

The one minor Democratic Party position we see as interesting is if Bronx County Campaign expert Benny Catala can win his old 77th A.D. Male District Leader position back from Mark Esceffeary-Bay who won the 77th A.D. Male District Leader position in 2010.

There are no assembly primaries in the 79th, 81st, 83rd, and 85th A.D.'s, and in the 77th A.D. we see Assemblywoman Vanessa Gibson winning the primary. In the 78th A.D. we see the race getting closer each and every day with challenger and current 78 A.D. State Committeeman Richardo “Ricky” Martinez closing in on the incumbent Jose Rivera's lead especially since the former county leader 's daughter is involved in what could wind up indictments and possible jail time. By the way Jose was the Bronx County Leader while his daughter Naomi was chosen to replace an ineligible candidate and we will have our prediction next week, because we want to see if any charges against daughter Naomi or father Jose the county leader while the alleged scandals was happening comes out before the primary. The same is true for the 80th A.D. as challenger Mark Gjonaj is about even with the tarnished incumbent, and I don't see the two other challengers Irene Estrada, and Adam Bernudez not getting more than 1 or 2 percent each or total.

In the 84th A.D. we see another victory for Assemblywoman Carmen Arroyo. In the 86th A.D. if incumbent Nelson Castro can't win with close to or over 90 percent he needs to look at himself and figure out what went wrong. In the old 76th and now new 87th A.D. two years ago we predicted Luis Sepulveda as the winner. He lost to longtime incumbent Assemblyman Peter Rivera (now State Labor Commissioner) by about 200 votes. With no incumbent this time we predict again that Luis Sepulveda will win, and by a margin of 81 – 19 percent. This even as State Senator Ruben Diaz Sr. is home recuperating from knee surgery and can not be out on the campaign with Sepulveda.

Don't forget to check my blog for daily updates, other events, and photos of events covered. If you have any comments about this column or my blog, or would like to have an event listed or covered in this column or on my blog you can e-mail us at or call 718-644-4199 Mr. Robert Press.
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