Brooklyn’s best-known political club voted its president out of office in a landslide on Thursday night in an effort to move on from the internal strife that plagued it in the past year.
The Independent Neighborhood Democrats chose former a club president, Ira Cure — who by his own admission had not been involved for the last five years — over incumbent Kenn Lowy by a 68-13 vote.
If you’re counting at home, that’s 84 percent for Cure — a Brezhnev-style victory.
Cure sought to portray himself as a candidate who could better handle issues within the club, which has struggled with conflict between its moderate and progressive factions.
That conflict flashed into the public arena last year during a bitter, intranecine split within the club over which candidate the club would endorse for City Council.
Right-of-center, pro-life, anti-gay marriage candidate John Heyer, a longtime member of the club, won the endorsement — though he ended up getting slammed by far more liberal Brad Lander in the more-important election.
In the midst of the controversy, Lowy took a leave of absence as president rather than work to elect the club’s pick, Heyer.
He said he made the decision in hopes of avoiding splitting the club. He didn’t split the club — he motivated it.
“Basically, the people that supported Heyer want me out,” said Lowy before Thursday’s vote.
Some members said that the issue was not over last year’s kerfuffle, but more about Lowy’s leadership as the club struggles to maintain its relevancy in an age of declining clubhouse power.
“A small faction would like to make it about Heyer,” said Mark Shames, the chair of the executive board of the club. “But a lot of people had a lot of problems with Kenn over the last year.
“Cure has no affiliation with any particular faction in the club and is unencumbered by the passions of the moment. … He’s the ideal unity candidate.”
Cure, the landslide victor, agreed.
“I’m a labor lawyer — a professional mediator,” he said. “There are problems with [internal] procedures that I can overcome.”
©2010 Community Newspaper Group
By submitting this comment, you agree to the following terms:
You agree that you, and not BrooklynPaper.com or its affiliates, are fully responsible for the content that you post. You agree not to post any abusive, obscene, vulgar, slanderous, hateful, threatening or sexually-oriented material or any material that may violate applicable law; doing so may lead to the removal of your post and to your being permanently banned from posting to the site. You grant to BrooklynPaper.com the royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual and fully sublicensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such content in whole or in part world-wide and to incorporate it in other works in any form, media or technology now known or later developed.