The mayoral campaign isn’t getting a lot of front page treatment these days, so other races around the city are getting even less. That’s understandable: In a town with a 5:1 Democratic registration advantage, the primary contest is usually—for practical purposes—the whole ballgame in races for public advocate, comptroller, borough president, and city council. But in fact, on November 8 voters will have a choice in all the citywide races and borough presidency contests, as well as in 36 council districts.
The most crowded council race is for Bill Perkins’s Harlem seat, where Inez Dickens has the Democratic slot and faces Republican Will Brown, War Veterans candidate Woody Henderson, and Independence Party runner Daryl Bloodsaw.
Bloodsaw, who says he’s “always been a Democrat,” placed fourth in a 10-person primary for a different seat in 2001. This year, with Perkins term-limited out, Dickens won a crowded primary; Bloodsaw skipped it. “In a crowded field, generally what happens is the vote is spread out and it plays into the hands of the establishment candidate,” he tells the Voice. “I needed to find a different way to pare down the field. That’s why I sought the Independence Party nomination.” He says he does not think that Lenora Fulani’s controversial comments should taint a whole party any more than the one-time KKK membership of some of its luminaries should stain the Democrats.
Whatever party he’s in, it’s not the Democratic line he’s on, and that’s going to be tough to overcome even if turnout is really low. Bloodsaw, who’s holding weekly issues seminars at his headquarters, pins his hopes on the results of that crowded primary he skipped. “The person who won the Democratic Primary [Dickens] is very well known,” he says. “She won with 28 percent of the vote so that means 72 percent of the people who went to the polls knew who she was and still voted against her.” If he can find that 72 percent, Bloodsaw says, he’ll be fine.