Race-Baiting in New York Mayoral Election
December 4, 2001
Mr. Terry McAuliffe, Chairman
Democratic National Committee
430 South Capitol Street, SE
Washington, DC 20003
Dear Chairman McAuliffe:
It has recently come to my attention that the campaign of former New York
mayoral candidate, Mark Green, was responsible for the distribution of a
denigrating and controversial flyer intended to galvanize white voters
against Green's primary opposition, Fernando Ferrer.
As reported by the New York Daily News on November 30, 2001 the flyer in
question depicted a New York Post cartoon of Mr. Ferrer "kissing the behind
of an obese Rev. Sharpton." The flyers were distributed in predominately
Jewish and Italian neighborhoods in Brooklyn where dislike for Reverend
Sharpton is reportedly high. Shortly after, anonymous phone calls were made
to voters, which stated that Ferrer would "hand the keys to City Hall to
Sharpton," should he be elected.
Let me be perfectly clear when I say, I am thoroughly appalled that the
shameless use of a technique as divisive as race baiting would be used as a
method of getting out the vote in 2001. Further, I am troubled that to date,
no action has been taken to address this incident with the exception of a
statement you made to "look into all allegations," and to "eject anyone found
responsible for the flyers from the Democratic Party."
Mr. Chairman, it is my sincere hope that both you and the Democratic Party
will act swiftly to appropriately address this issue. As a man of your word,
I expect that you will stand firm to your statement and "eject" those
individuals found responsible for this affront from the Party immediately.
Recently, you made the following statement: " Now is the time to look forward
toward the future of New York City. In so many ways New York City has
inspired not only our nation, but also our entire world. I call on all
Democrats to show true leadership and move forward in that spirit." Your
words could not be more timely. In the spirit of democracy, reconciliation,
and equality, let us move forward leaving those individuals who perpetrate
and tolerate ethnic, racial, and all forms of divisiveness, behind. Let it
be known that the Democratic Party, its leadership, and its members will not
tolerate such a blatant act of racism, not now or ever.
Please feel free to contact me with questions or concerns. As always, I look
forward to your reply.
With warm regards, I remain
Member of Congress