Orthodox Jewish fixture considers another challenge to a ‘punk’ Council incumbent in Williamsburg
Isaac Abraham, an Orthodox Jew who mounted a strong bid when he ran for City Council in Williamsburg in 2008, is considering another bid this fall.
Abraham held a meeting with some campaign supporters yesterday to discuss, among other things, his own prospects of running against the current City Councilman representing Williamsburg, Stephen Levin.
Abraham confirmed the meeting in a brief telephone interview this morning. He has not made a final decision about whether to run but is very seriously considering it.
The prospects of Abraham mounting another bid seemed to have improved earlier this week when another potential candidate, Democratic district leader Lincoln Restler, announced he would not run against Levin, whom he has long criticized.
Levin won the seat in a crowded race in 2008, thanks in part to the support he got from his employer and patron at the time, Assemblyman Vito Lopez. Recently, Lopez was accused of sexually harassing numerous female staffers, prompting the state legislature to pay more than $100,000 to settle the claims, which Lopez denies. Numerous elected officials have called on Lopez to resign, which he has resisted.
In my brief chat with Abraham, he criticized Levin's record of accomplishment in the district, and his association with Lopez. Abraham, 63, also referred to Levin, 31, more than once as a "punk."
Abraham, said he does "maintenance work" and is semi-retired. Although he is an Orthodox Jew in Williamsburg, Abraham said he doesn't identify with either the Aaron or Zalmen factions of the Satmar community, which are two major factions that help dictate the politics in that part of the city.
CORRECTION: The Councilman's age has been corrected.