William Alatriste for the NYC Council

Vincent Gentile, seen here in the City Council chambers where he is term-limited, places second to Acting DA Eric Gonzalez in a recent poll by one of the other candidates in the race.

It may be time to revise the leader board in the race for Brooklyn District attorney. According to a recent poll of nearly 800 registered Democrats in Brooklyn, Acting-DA Eric Gonzalez remains out front, but with only 19 percent support. The current front-runner is “Undecided,” at 42 percent.

Equally surprising is that the next two contenders behind Gonzalez are Vincent Gentile (14 percent) and Marc Fliedner (10 percent). Meanwhile, Patricia Gatling (7 percent) and Ama Dwimoh (6 percent) appear to be negating each other’s appeal to the borough’s Black voters (as both campaigns feared). And despite her strong fundraising and support from Assemblywoman JoAnne Simon and other elected officials, Anne Swern checks in at only 3 percent.

The telephone poll was conducted earlier this month by one of the bottom three candidates. City Limits has reviewed the data and found no notable demographic problems. This reporter was also among those polled.

Given Gonzalez’s significant war chest and ability as the officeholder to make headlines, it’s still his race to lose. But a recent endorsement from the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association doesn’t exactly burnish Gonzalez’s credentials as a reformer. Similarly, in the wake of a City Limits report on donations he received from the bail bond industry, Gonzalez returned the dubious money earlier this month.

One of Gonzalez’s campaign mailers featured a somewhat surprising plug from Judge Jonathan Lippman. Last month, Lippman, along with Borough President Eric Adams and Norman Siegel, called for a statewide panel to review wrongful convictions, which seemed to knock Gonzalez’s handling of  Brooklyn’s Conviction Review Unit. However, Lippman tells City Limits that his call was “in no way a criticism of Acting DA Gonzalez, whose work on wrongful convictions I greatly admire.”

The wild card in the race appears to be Fliedner, whose grassroots campaign has been endorsed by several Bernie Sanders-aligned groups. Fliedner, who prosecuted the Peter Liang case, says that Gonzalez’s recent endorsement from the PBA makes “it impossible to have confidence that he will hold police accountable for acts of misconduct.”

Still to come are endorsements from the Big Three papers, which could put Gonzalez over the top—or lift one of the other contenders from the pack.


4 thoughts on “Poll Shows Brooklyn DA Race to be Wide Open

  1. An endorsement from former chief judge Jonathan Lippman could actually be the kiss of death. Lippman, who has absolutely no criminal law experience, was never anything more than a shill for his childhood pal Sheldon Silver. Silver engineered Lippman’s entire judicial career and together they rigged the system to benefit themselves and their cronies at public expense. The Manhattan courts that produced phenomenal results for the lawyers who were kicking back to Silver is a perfect example. Now, Lippman’s former right hand man at the Office of Court Administration, David Bookstaver, has been exposed for having a $170k no-show OCA job. Bookstaver’s wife has also been exposed for having a $120k do-nothing job at OCA. Knowledgeable court insiders have indicated that these situations were arranged by Lippman before he retired. The whole thing is currently under investigation and it will be interesting to see what is uncovered.

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