NY Political Scoop: the Towns v. Dilans
by Roberto Perez/The Perez Notes
Sources tell me that Congressman Ed Towns is hinting at running his daughter Deidra on a third party line in Brooklyn’s 54th Assembly District.
The Towns family has begun to assemble a campaign staff that includes Arelis Echevarria as campaign treasurer. Echevarria served as director of community relations for former City Comptroller Bill Thompson.
As for the always critical campaign manager slot, the Towns clan has approached the Brooklyn political veteran Juan Martinez, the president of Progress Inc. According to my sources, Martinez has yet to decide whether he will take the post.
In my last column, I wrote that another political clan—the Dilan family—is favored for the Assembly seat. That seat was vacated when Gov. Andrew Cuomo appointed Darryl Towns to state commissioner.
Congressman Towns is trying to beat back a challenge by the Dilans for the Assembly seat so that he can claim his real prize—the District Leader position. His son Darryl also held that seat until he was bumped up by Cuomo. By controlling the DL position, Towns could influence judicial appointments and possibly broker a spot on the NY Supreme Court for candidate and friend Betty Williams.
But securing both positions (DL and the AD) is an uphill climb for the congressman. The Democratic nominee for the Assembly seat will be chosen by the Democratic County Committee. That committee is stacked with Dilan allies.
In an overwhelmingly Democratic district, running on a third party line, even if your last name is Towns, is next to impossible. Echevarria has been recruited as campaign treasurer, with the hope that her fundraising prowess will level the playing field.
This weekend, both political families are expected to meet. No one knows what the outcome will be, but what is evident is that Congressman Towns is making a concerted effort to maintain a Towns family presence in the 54th AD.