News & Politics

Ed Koch Upsets Republican Incumbent for City Council


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November 17, 1966, Vol. XII, No. 5

Koch Upsets Incumbent, But No Other Surprises

All the incumbents who ran in the Greenwich Village area won election on November 8, except Republican Councilman Woodward Kingman, who was defeated by Democrat-Liberal Edward I. Koch by about 2500 votes.

Despite the fact that the Civilian Review Board was defeated almost two-to-one, citywide, it was backed by 61 per cent of the votes in the 63rd A.D. (Greenwich Village and Chelsea).

Re-elected were Congressmen Theodore R. Kupferman, R. 17th C.D.; Leonard Farbstein, D. 19th C.D.; State Senator Whitney North Seymour, R. 26th S.D.; and Assemblyman William F. Passannante, D. 63rd A.D.

Governor Rockefeller won an easy victory in the 63rd A.D. He received 21,328 to Democrat Frank O’Connor’s 12,062, Liberal Franklin D. Roosevelt’s 5451, and Conservative Paul Adams’s 2415.

Koch’s election provided the surprise. He not only unseated a Republican in a Republican year, but he took a seat that had been in GOP hands since the 1920s.

The most interesting fact of the election, however, was that he won all the predominantly Italian-American South Village districts. This sweep for Koch would have been unimaginable a couple of years ago because of the role he played in the political demise of the South Village’s Carmine G. DeSapio as Democratic district leader. Koch, however, gained the respect of the local people by supporting them in their battle against the burgeoning commercial night-life atmosphere of their area. His success in the South Village had the crucial support of Emanuel Popolizio and Dina Nolan, who headed an independent citizens’ committee for his election and who had been the chief proponents of the MacDougal Street Area Neighborhood Association (MANA). An interesting sidelight on the South Village situation was that Democrat Robert Ferrari running for City Council in 1965 won only one of the seven South Village districts.

Koch lost only two of the entire 50 Greenwich Village election districts, and though he lost on the Republican Upper East Side, he ran far ahead of the top of the ticket, Frank O’Connor. The total vote in the 2nd Councilmanic District was Koch, on Democratic and Liberal lines, 46,315; Kingman, Republican, 43,752; and Edward Diedrich, Conservative, 4475….

[Each weekday morning, we post an excerpt from another issue of the Voice, going in order from our oldest archives. Visit our Clip Job archive page to see excerpts back to 1956.]


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