Invitation was extended to Teachout


To the editor:

(re: “Our political machine history,” Sept. 27)

In his letter attacking Andrew Cuomo, Alan Saks notes that at the 2014 endorsement meeting of the Benjamin Franklin Reform Democratic Club, there was “no representative present for the Teachout campaign.”

Zephyr Teachout was then, as was Gov. Cuomo and Randy Credico, a Democratic candidate for governor. Saks writes that “when I privately questioned the then club president about this at that time, he (sic) assured me that she had been invited by letter, but she must have overlooked the letter. I now doubt that any such letter ever existed. If I am wrong, please send The Riverdale Press a copy.”

I was president of the Ben Franklin Club that year, and Saks is most definitely wrong. Teachout’s campaign received the same invitation letter that Cuomo and Credico received. Cuomo sent a surrogate to the meeting to speak on his behalf and Credico attended spoke for himself. Teachout did not attend, and her campaign sent no representative.

I have provided The Riverdale Press editor copies of the emailed letter of invitation, and the email messages exchanged between my husband — then Democratic district leader, who on my behalf, communicated with and received responses from the Teachout campaign. The club minutes of the 2014 endorsement meeting noted, “Although contacted, there was no representative present from the Zephyr Teachout campaign.”

As we have seen in just two years, we face profound challenges from the Trump administration and its New York State allies. Opportunities exist in the Nov. 6 elections to restore some sanity to government and politics. Now especially is not the time to sow disunity among Democrats with conspiracy theories.

Note: The results of the 2014 written secret club endorsement ballot was Cuomo 61, Teachout 6, Credit 1, and no endorsement 4.

Ellen Feld

The author is former president of the Benjamin Franklin Reform Democratic Club.

EDITOR’S NOTE: The author did indeed send a copy of the communication with Zephyr Teachout’s press team, dated Aug. 28, 2014, that included an invite to the Sept. 3, 2014 endorsement meeting.

Ellen Feld