Velazquez Nabs Brooklyn, Lower East Side and Hasidic Votes To Secure Victory

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Nydia Velazquez needed to refuel after a long day campaigning. She was barely soaking in her victory - having addressed the crowd at Williamsburg's East River Bar shortly before 11 p.m. - and was piling her plate with meatballs, roast chicken, fried fish, pasta salad, rice and some kind of lasagna at a buffet set up in the bar's backyard. "We beat him in his own district! In his base! Cypress Hills!" she said. "The question was turnout and how well we would do in the Hasidic community. But I'm going to work and represent the entire community." Her campaign manager, Anthony Thomas, said the keys to victory were decisive wins in Brownstone Brooklyn and the Lower East Side, and keeping pace with Dilan in Hasidic Williamsburg, where Velazquez picked up about 40 percent of the vote. Turnout had indeed been low throughout the district. Poll watcher Dorothy Siegel said that voter turnout in Brooklyn Heights was the lowest she had ever seen. And voters were slow to get to the polls in parts of southside Williamsburg and Bushwick. Councilwoman Diana Reyna, who herself enjoyed a raucous primary night three years ago after defeating a Vito Lopez-backed candidate, said that she believed the Brooklyn Democratic chairman had been counting on a low turnout to help Dilan, but that even he thought Nydia was going to win. "Vito approached a volunteer at my polling site and said, 'Of course she's going to win, she had eight pieces of mail and three negative pieces in the final days of the campaign,'" said Reyna. Just after midnight, City Comptroller John Liu stopped by to congratulate Nydia and pose for a half-dozen photographs. "I've been on the campaign trail with a lot of people and it's really hard to keep up with Nydia," he said. "Congratulations to Nydia and congrats to all of us. This is Nydialand!" To read more from City & State [click here. ](

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