Friday 3 September 2010

NY 15 - the Democratic Party Primary

One of the raft of primaries to be held on Tuesday 14th September is attracting particular attention. NY15 (New York's 15th Congressional District) is currently held by Charles Rangel - currently coming to the end of his 20th term. [he was first elected in 1970 - and is now over 80]. It is not his age which has made him vulnerable. The ethics charges which he is facing are the reason that this major player in US politics is facing a serious challenge.

There is a certain irony that the most most likely to topple him is the son of the long serving Congressman that Rangel himself toppled in a closely fought primary in 1970. Adam Clayton Powell was a prominent civil rights leader and pastor who was elected in 1944. A website about him can be accessed here. Rangel's main challenger on 14th is [Adam Clayton Powell IV] the son of Adam Clayton Powell by his third wife. [His half-brother, the son of Clayton Powell and his jazz (and classical) singer & pianist wife, Hazel Scott, is Adam Clayton Powell III].

Charlie Rangel's website can be accessed here and Adam Clayton Powell IV's here.

NY15 covers Harlam and northern Manhatten. In 2007 the district was 28% Black and 46% Hispanic - Powell is  the son of the most famous black of his time, and the daughter of a mayor of San Juan, Puerto Rico - and was raised and educated in Puerto Rico after his parents separated.

The New York Times website is accessible here.