Posted on March 25, 2022

‘Racist Remarks’ Made by Mayoral Appointee Decried by BK Leader

Kayla Levy, Patch, March 22, 2022

A Park Slope leader joined immigrant rights advocates speaking out against Mayor Eric Adams’ choice to appoint a former City Council Member, whose been criticized for cultural insensitivity, to his administration.

“I cannot in good conscience support someone who has made comments pitting one group against another or someone who has actively fought in the Council to restrict the rights of immigrants,” wrote Park Slope’s Council Member Shahana Hanif in a public letter to the mayor.

In her letter, Hanif, who chairs the Council’s Immigration Committee, demanded that Adams reconsider Laurie Cumbo’s appointment as the new Cultural Affairs commissioner, pointing to Cumbo’s opposition to a non-citizen voting bill on the basis that many immigrants voted for Donald Trump in 2020.

Cumbo later clarified her remarks, writing in a Medium post that the bill — which was passed by the Council but is now tied up in court — will “dilute” the power of Black voters — a claim that Hanif said aligns with the could-be commissioner’s history of pitting groups against each other.


Luis Miranda Jr. — a political strategist and the father of Broadway and film director Lin-Manuel Miranda — said he couldn’t support her appointment on the basis of her “anti-immigrant statements,” Politico reported.

Former City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito also criticized her appointment, calling Cumbo an “affront to the Latino community.”