Charles Lavine is the clear choice for re-election in the state Assembly’s 13th District.
Lavine, a Democrat who was first elected to the Assembly in 2004, brings a wealth of experience, the respect of his peers and a deep knowledge of the issues facing the district, the state and the country.
He worked as a staff attorney for Legal Aid early in his career, as a partner in a Queens law firm and is now as a sole practitioner specializing in criminal defense work.
In the Assembly, he serves as chair of the judiciary committee. As chairman Lavine oversaw an investigation of former Gov. Andrew Cuomo that found overwhelming evidence of misconduct – notwithstanding his party affiliation or what he saw as the former governor’s considerable accomplishments.
Lavine correctly cites the threat to democracy posed by election deniers and Republican efforts nationally to suppress the will of the people in elections as the greatest threat to our freedoms.
He recognizes the lie behind state Republicans’ No. 1 election claim – reform of the state’s bail laws is behind the rise in crime in New York since 2020. And he offers real solutions to an increase in crime, particularly violent acts, that has hit every state in the union.
The solutions include red-flag laws and bans on ghost guns and assault weapons. He also offers creative ways to combat crime such as using schools as community centers offering services intended to keep young people from straying into crime.
He aknowledges the threat posed by climate change and the need to better prepare Long Island for its consequences.
Lavine is opposed by Republican Ruka Anzai, a real estate agent who lives in Jericho and has never served in government.
Anzai declined an invitation by Blank Slate Media to debate Lavine or speak to us one-on-one. She also declined to meet with Newsday’s editorial board.
On her website, she praises Nassau County’s low crime rate and like other Republicans blames the spike in crime in New York City on bail reform.
She also calls for the state Board of Education to “create flexibility for families “when it comes to challenging topics,” which sounds like an invitation to interfere with school curriculums in which discussion of slavery, Jim Crow and LGBTQ issues are suppressed.
Taking a page from national Republican campaigns inspired by President Trump, she said Gov. Kathy Hochul “has brute-forced medical procedures on people and threatened to lock up anyone who is vaguely defined as a threat to public health.”
This is simply not true.
She also raises false concerns about election integrity in New York, calling for two forms of identity for in-person voting and a more comprehensive security protocol to “protect the integrity of mail-in ballots.”
These are problems that simply don’t exist.
New York has enough issues to deal with without making them up.
Charles Lavine offers a welcome alternative. We strongly support his re-election.