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Snow And Absentee Ballots Blanket Town Committee Primaries, Senior Voters: “We’re Waiting For Lydia”–Maria Pereira’s Vindictive Streak

February 27th, 2014 · 20 Comments · Analysis and Comment, City Politics, News and Events

With snow projected on the eve of Tuesday’s Democratic Town Committee primaries in seven districts it looks like more votes will be cast via absentee ballot than electors showing at the polls. The Town Clerk’s Office has mailed roughly 1000 absentee ballots with 400 having been returned. That means several hundred more will likely come in by Tuesday. A lot of absentee activity is coming from the East Side 137th District where the queen of absentee ballots Lydia Martinez holds court. The city councilwoman is trying to hold on to her East Side town committee seat.

If Lydia is the queen of absentee ballots then former State Rep. Americo Santiago is the king. But Americo has been enjoying the sun and surf in Puerto Rico this past month so we can’t pick on Americo’s AB influence in this race. The veteran political operative is staying out of this one. As a result of the absentee activity, elections officials have conducted traditional supervised balloting at several senior housing complexes to accommodate the elderly who cannot make it to the polls.

On Wednesday elections officials conducted supervised ballots at Harborview Towers on East Washington Avenue where Martinez has a long history of working her peeps for various city elections at the Barnum School voting precinct in the 137th District. To illustrate the influence of Lydia who was not there, several of the seniors assembled in the Harborview community room declared, “We’re waiting for Lydia.” The East Side councilwoman has been fined a few times for election law violations including assisting a constituent with filling out an absentee ballot. Generally speaking only close family members and medical professionals can facilitate an absentee ballot on behalf of another. But for Lydia, tracking absentee ballots is like votes in the bank.

About 30,000 registered Democrats covering seven districts are eligible to vote on Tuesday. Most political operatives projected the overall turnout at five percent, but with snow on the horizon for Monday it could impair some roads for Tuesday. This will place a premium on operatives making sure their absentee ballot peeps fill out their form and mail it back to the Town Clerk’s Office.

Voters can also show up at the Town Clerk’s Office, 45 Lyon Terrace, before Tuesday and fill out an absentee ballot if they’re unable to make it to the polls Tuesday. The names of more than 120 candidates will appear on ballots across seven districts. Electors can vote for up to nine candidates from two lines. The winners will be elected to the 90-member Democratic Town Committee that elects a chairman and endorse candidates for public office. Chairman Mario Testa is expected to win another two-year term barring surprise results on Tuesday. Black Rock District Leader Danny Roach is eying a challenge.

Things are getting testy in some districts including the Upper East Side 138th District where Bridgeport Working Families Party Chair Maria Pereira, former school board member, has turned against candidates simply because Andy Fardy whose wife Pat is a district candidate dared to criticize Pereira who hasn’t been bashful about spewing criticism if it suits her. Is the Working Families Party the new Bridgeport bullies? City educator Ann Barney, a district candidate, explains:

I heard Maria had turned on the 138th and specifically Pat Fardy and myself. So like any adult, I went to the source instead of listening to rumors.
I spoke to Maria directly. She told me she did not like what Andy Fardy said about her on the blog. She admitted to me she called all the people she had gotten absentee ballots for and told them she withdrew her support of Pat and myself and they should not vote for us.
I asked Maria how Andy’s postings and my running on the 138th’s slate were connected. She simply responded I was his friend.
Quite frankly, I think most people will agree her thinking is flawed. I am not sure how Pat and I are held accountable for Andy’s postings. Last time I looked we were still in the United States of America and had the freedom of free speech.
Maria wants to use hers by speaking out against Pat and I, but Andy can’t use his if it upsets Maria.
Funny, Maria I did not badmouth you or hold you accountable when your friends on the Board of Ed voted not to fire Dickson.
But based on your logic maybe I should have.

The candidate line-up below:

130th District: Daniel Roach, JoAnn Manzo, Michael Meehan, Melissa Henton, Anne Larcheveque, Thomas Mulligan, Jr., Joy Cline, John McCarthy, Jr., Eric Amado, Jr.
Challenge slate: Hector Diaz, Edna Garcia, Lee Samowitz, Rob Sullivan, James Fox, Robert Foley, David King, Joel Gonzalez, Tyree Gousse.

132nd District: Michael Freddino, Mary Evette Brantley, Carol Cocco, Anthony Lancia, Sr., John Olson, Lisa Parziale, Elaine Pivirotto, Joan Thornton, Reginald Walker.
Challenge slate:: Robert Halstead, Michael Jacques, Howard Gardner, Patricia Swain, Arlene Walsh, Stephon Wynter, Jessica Materna, Pierre Page Jr, Angel Echevarria.

133rd District: Thomas McCarthy, Howard Austin, Sr., Joseph Hatrick, Sr., Joseph Moura, Peretz Robinson, Abel Chaparro, Jeanette Herron, Albertina Baptista, Vincent DiPalma.
Challenge slate: Jessica Allen, Josh Kristy, Louis Innacell, Gail Janensch, Mahlon Goma, Ann Martin, Earl King Jr., Eugene Gailliard.

135th District: Wilfred Murphy, Diane Richards, Warren Blunt, Audrey Barr, Richard Bonney, Steven Ferreira, Deborah DeIrish, Curtis Mae McNair, Richard Cruz.
Challenge slate: Stephen Nelson, Doris Roman Nelson, Waith Mitchell, Carmen Harron, Charlie Stallworth, Mary McBride Lee, Fred Gee Jr, Darrett Evans Moss, Craig Jones.

136th District: Carlos Silva, John Gomes, Adelaide Esteves, Gloria Carbone, Jose DePina, Derek Williams, Lawrence Moore Jr., Mark Bush, Angel DePara Jr.
Challenge slate: Christopher Rosario, Jose Casco, Fabio Mazo, Lawrence Osborne Jr., Wanda Geter Pataky, Cruz Cotto, Dennis Bradley, Richard DeJesus, Mark Trojanowski.

137th District: Gilberto Hernandez, Lydia Martinez, Banjed Labrador, Joe Rosario, Maria Rivera, Guillermo Marin, Aidee Nieves, Juan Hernandez, Maria Ines Valle.
Challenge slate: Clinton Iannotti, Anderson Ayala, Alberto (Tito) Ayala, Jacqueline Richardson, Rueben LeBron Jr.

138th District: Richard Paoletto Jr, Martha Santiago, Michael Marella Jr., Christopher Anastasi, Kevin Monks, Kelly Ann Perez, Madeline Lopez, Andrezej Narolewski, Barbara Powell.
Challenge slate: Scott Hughes, Ann Barney, Pat Fardy, Twana Johnson, Melanie Jackson, Pearlye Sams-Allen, James Morton III, Nadia Pearce, Noel Sepulveda.

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20 Comments so far ↓

  • Andrew C Fardy

    Snow and absentee ballots are not all that is covering Tuesday’s primary. Here in the 138th we are dealing with a Judas. It seems the WFP town chair is upset with me because I had the nerve to question her and the WFP for their handling of the BOE since they became the majority. Maria Pereira has decided to campaign against my wife Pat and my friend Ann Barney because I disagreed with her. It seems there is no give and take here, it’s Maria Pereira’s way or the highway.

    • Jimfox

      TL in the 138th told me Maria was not helping anyone, she wanted to keep WFP neutral, so now she’s flucking over people in the 138th?

      • barney

        Jimfox,
        Maria has been involved in the 138th since late November, early December. She with others interviewed many potential candidates for the DTC slate. The interviews were held at Maria’s house. Maria and friends vetted each candidate and Maria was the driving force behind the selected nine candidates. Maria met with the slate, presented a strategy for campaigning, authorized the literature, and on and on.
        So to say she was remaining neutral is a lie.
        The rest of your post is rather accurate.

      • Andrew C Fardy

        Jim, she really is screwing over my wife and Ann Barney by telling people not to vote for them. So much for neutral.

  • Mojo

    *** SNOW OR SHINE, BPT VOTER TURNOUT WITH A/Bs WILL TOTAL 3000. *** WELCOME TO ZOMBIELAND ***

  • barney

    I heard Maria had turned on the 138th and specifically Pat Fardy and myself. So like any adult, I went to the source instead of listening to rumors.
    I spoke to Maria directly. She told me she did not like what Andy Fardy said about her on the blog. She admitted to me she called all the people she had gotten absentee ballots for and told them she withdrew her support of Pat and myself and they should not vote for us.
    I asked Maria how Andy’s postings and my running on the 138th’s slate were connected. She simply responded I was his friend.
    Quite frankly, I think most people will agree her thinking is flawed. I am not sure how Pat and I are held accountable for Andy’s postings. Last time I looked we were still in the United States of America and had the freedom of free speech.
    Maria wants to use hers by speaking out against Pat and I, but Andy can’t use his if it upsets Maria.
    Funny, Maria I did not badmouth you or hold you accountable when your friends on the Board of Ed voted not to fire Dickson.
    But based on your logic maybe I should have.

  • Andrew C Fardy

    Lennie, I worked to get WFP candidates on the BOE. I stood outside Hooker school for hours telling all my friends to vote that line.
    My wife and Ann Barney accepted Maria’s invitation to run with a group that is seeking the seats. They agreed.
    Based on Maria’s behavior as described by Ann Barney I have to wonder if Maria isn’t doing a hatchet job for Bill Finch. Everyone knows my wife does not get along with Finch. So why is Maria just going after my wife and Ann Barney? Just because I said screw her and Lopez on a subject long forgotten? I think she cut a deal with Finch to pay back my wife and Ann Barney. Stranger things have happened. Can you imagine a Finch undercover agent from another party?

    • Lifelong Bpt

      Andy–
      I know you are looking for deep motives as to why she turned on you and your wife. But I doubt she has a deal with Finch. She does not like him either. This is just her way. If you cross her, it does not matter; it’s the way she is and the way she acts. No one really calls her out on it. You did and you see the reaction.

  • John Marshall Lee

    Andy, when you post regularly on any number of topics and in your own name, you are bound to find favor with some, have mixed feelings from others and develop some deep and negative feelings from still others. That’s life (in the BIG CITY)!

    This week I spent one hour in conversation with someone I had met briefly on two occasions. His age, occupation, religion, race, and family experience were different than mine. However what brought us together was a notion things can get better when we work together, as residential property owners we had an active responsibility to learn more about City finances, and we cannot hope for governance to get better on its own. We need to become informed and active, seeking more Open, Accountable and Transparent process.

    And then he told me others had told him to stay away from me. I did not ask for the names of my naysayers but rather what they claimed against me. He told me they said I was a Finch supporter!!! He went on to tell me when people tell him not to see or listen to someone, he generally likes to do his own appraisal or assessment. That’s what we did and the truth overcomes negatives that are untrue.

    Pat Fardy and Ann Barney have provided countless hours of time, energy and knowledge to fellow citizens in a variety of ways. A newcomer will have a difficult time tarnishing their records, Andy, and the naysayers, like Maria, can only influence “newbies” who can change over time and learn an important lesson about those who run around talking about people negatively. It is a simple thing to demonize members of the community, and it can even work for short periods of time when a lot is ongoing. However, in the early light of dawn on a new day, when you look at those standing, helping, and open to all, you begin to realize the casualties caused by the incessant backbiting and demonizing. Those are active verbs and do not combine to form any program for the youth of the community. Ladies, run on your records of public service. Ask Maria to post her record for all to see! Time will tell.

  • barney

    John,
    As usual, your words are very true. Thank you for your kind words.
    I will run on my own reputation and past actions. Some people will vote for me and some will not. The fact we get to vote, the fact we have the right to free speech is partly why we are fortunate to live in the USA.
    I was raised and I have raised my six children by a handful of “words to live by.”
    One thing my parents taught me and I have taught my children is your “word” is one of the most important things you have in life. Without your “word” you really don’t have much.
    Maria gave me her word she would back me, campaign for me, and work tirelessly for the 138th. Obviously by withdrawing her support from Pat and I, she does not value the concept of giving her “word.”
    During the BOE election, I watched Maria campaign endlessly. I have witnessed her work the polls. I used to think she was a woman of integrity. How wrong I turned out to be. I find her to often act like a bully. I don’t think she has any integrity. I think currently she is acting like a hypocrite.
    I for one am not afraid of Maria. She will not intimidate me. She will not discourage me, she will not prevent me from speaking up for what I believe.
    But remember in Maria’s world SHE is the only one allowed to freely voice her opinion. If anyone else does get ready to take her venom.

  • Pat Fardy

    Just for the record, I have worked for five Mayors going back to Bucci and loved doing the work required of me. I was diligent in my duties and went to all the courses required to do my job correctly and fairly.
    When I was approached to be on the slate for Town Committee I was flattered and will do the best job I can if elected.
    May the best qualified persons win and I hope the voters can see the discontent this person is spewing.
    What is that old saying? “Sticks and Stones will Break my bones, But Names will never Harm Me.”
    VOTE LINE C AND GOOD LUCK TO ALL

  • Bond Girl

    I wonder how Lindsay Farrell feels about the way Pereira is characterizing the WFP? One would think she would be mortified with the erratic outbursts, the blatant spiteful maneuvers and the disrespect she does not even remotely try to hide concerning any BOE members who don’t share her VERY loud opinion. This obnoxious behavior is condoned by the WFP at large? Really?

    This party was brought into being to stand up for and by the working families, but are ending up appearing to be bulldozing through everything they become involved with. Is this the vision the WFP had for their party? I can’t help but doubt that.

    Pereira becomes incensed and lashes out guns blazing with slander and spite when she even gets wind of a rumor anyone has an opinion about her tactics. News Flash: you don’t really try to keep a low profile, and YOU are creating that which you despise Ms. Pereira. Good for you Ann Barney, for taking your issue to the source. Most don’t cross Ms. Pereira because they are afraid to. Yes, afraid.

    There were some claims early on the WFP had nothing to do with the DTC challenge slates. Well, here we are and that appears to have been a lie.

    There was a time when I supported the WFP, now that time has passed, I no longer do. I am very, very sure I am not the only one either.

  • BPT REBEL

    Usually there is back and forth on every subject on here, this is the first unanimous decision I can remember seeing. If Ms. Pereira does read this blog she shouldn’t, she’s not very popular.

  • Hector A. Diaz

    Please push your differences to the side. What is happening is common amongst nine-member slates (with nine different personalities), but that’s what makes a strong team, your ability to see through 18 eyes the needs of the district in its entirety. In my years of working campaigns, I’ve noticed near the end of them is when people start questioning either one’s commitment or desire or even one’s associates and how they might affect one’s decisions. Believe me, your competition is banking on some sort of internal strife. Being so close to the end let’s not beat ourselves, if we are to be beaten let it be at the polls, accept this as your mantra and go out, knock on doors and continue the fight.

  • Andrew C Fardy

    Hector, my wife and Ann Barney don’t take any shit from anybody. What Maria Pereira has been doing is not something you put aside for the sake of an election. There is more to life than winning an election. When a person is wrongly accused of things by a dissident she has worked with it’s time to speak out.

    • Phil Smith

      I find it interesting Maria is doing all of this Democratic primary work at the same time she is serving as the chair of the so-called Working Families Party.

      Her conduct is typical of the juvenile behavior we have come to expect from the WFP.

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