NYC Jews recently call for discrimination after Gerrymander

Some Brooklyn lawmakers say the court-ordered redrawing of convention maps discriminates against the borough’s Orthodox Jewish community, and are urging the state judge overseeing the gerrymandering case to consolidate all Jewish neighborhoods into one borough.

“We are writing to share with you our deep-rooted belief that the lines of Congress as they are being drawn discriminate against Orthodox Jews, a community of interest, under the New York State Constitution,” Councilman Kalman Yeger and Rep. Simcha Eichenstein said in the Letter to Supreme Court Justice Patrick McAllister.

“The Orthodox Jews were cut up into five districts! Don’t hack us! Don’t scatter us around! We matter,” Eichenstein also told The Post on Thursday.

“Is that a coincidence? This is discrimination against orthodox Jews and it is outrageous.”

Simcha Eichenstein
MP Simcha Eichenstein called the redrawing “discrimination”.
Paul Martinka for the NY Post

The New York Democratic Party’s debacle has worsened by the day, and the allegations of discrimination against the Jewish community come a day after Bronx Rep. Ritchie Torres begged his colleague Sean Patrick Maloney – who also chairs the House Democrats’ Congressional Committee – has accused racism following reports that Hudson Valley Democrat allies have claimed incumbent black Rep. Mondaire Jones is ideologically unfit to represent his newly drafted district.

Maloney plans to start Jones after his house is pulled out of his current 18th congressional district.

McAllister is expected to approve revised congressional maps created by his appointed special master Patrick Cervantes on Friday after the courts overruled the Democratic Party’s partisan gerrymandering as unconstitutional — what critics dubbed “Hochulmander” because Gov. Kathy Hochul approved them .

City Council Kalman Yeger
Councilor Kalman Yeger told The Post that the redraw “makes no sense at all”.
Stefan Jeremiah for the NY Post

Lawmakers complained that the heavily Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods of Borough Park, Midwood, and Flatbush were split into two congressional districts, the 9th and 10th, under the newly drawn lines.

One reason is that even the revised 10th Ward proposed by Cervantes extends the borough from southern Brooklyn to Lower Manhattan and Greenwich Village.

“It doesn’t make any sense at all,” Yeger told the Post while explaining the appeal to the judge for changes.

“We are requesting that the 10th congressional district proposed by the Court and the Special Master be expanded slightly to include the remaining portions of the Borough Park, Midwood and Flatbush neighborhoods. The proposed maps include portions of these neighborhoods in the proposed 9th congressional district,” lawmakers told the judge in the letter.

Alternatively, if that is not possible, they are calling for all of Borough Park to be housed in the currently proposed 9th Ward.

“In the past 10 years, our community has been represented by five congressional districts. During this time, our community has grown well above the city average. This growth includes more than 75,000 children and 75 yeshivas (schools),” lawmakers said.

“But this growth has also resulted in family members a block away and even across the street from having different representatives in Congress, language barriers, uncertainty about where to seek constituent services, and challenges in tackling community issues such as education, Housing, Healthcare and Public Safety.”

“We ask that the final maps that you approve unify this community of interest, fix the problem we’ve had for the last 10 years, and avoid these challenges for another 10 years,” Eichenstein and Yeger said.

Meanwhile, the Jewish Community Relations Council also sent out a letter asking the judge to keep the East Side and West Side of Manhattan in separate congressional districts, rather than folding them into a new 12th congressional district, which congressmen opposed Jerrold Nadler and Carolyn Maloney would face each other in a Democratic primary. Westsider Nadler and Eastsider Maloney have represented their respective boroughs in Congress for 30 years.

“It’s hard for a non-New Yorker to understand how different the East Side and West Side are. All levels of New York City politics and government respect this distinction between geographic and urban planning: borough planning boards, police districts, school boards, city council, state senate, state assembly, and congress. Even the judicial districts of the state of New York are drawn respecting the East Side and West Side boundaries. All of these districts clearly reflect the different communities of interest,” JCRC President Cheryl Fishbein and COE Gideon Taylor told the judge.

“The Special Masters map ignores that and would produce the largest geographic/tectonic shift in New York City politics since the opening of Central Park before the Civil War,” they said. NYC Jews recently call for discrimination after Gerrymander


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