Incumbents across all city primary election races from Mayor to City Council fared very well without a single City Council incumbent defeated. Council Member I Daneek Miller won his primary race against his challenger by a wide margin of 78% to 22%.
Miller spoke to Communities of Color News about the focus of his upcoming term, the reason why voters supported his re-election and the Democrat party.
“We laid a foundation around affordable housing, the wealth of our community and making sure people stay in their homes. We are going to keep that going. The affordable housing that is being built in our district, we want to make sure the MOU’s (Memorandum of Understanding) [agreements] that we have established are adhered to, that we are providing affordable housing and providing opportunity. We are on our way. Two thousand units. We are going to make sure people live up to their word. We are not going to sleep on that. [We want to] make sure there are qualified applicants and that we [fill those units] with 50-65% of our community.”
Miller believes collaboration was a key factor in his re-election. “The work that we have done here, delivering services back to the community, the idea of a community and elected officials working together for a common cause. This wasn’t an individual campaign. We work collaboratively with community organizations, with faith based organizations and colleagues in government to achieve overall goals that are greater than individual goals,” he said. He is excited about Adrienne Adams’ primary election win. He also believes he has a “great partnership” with Council Member Donovan Richards (who also won his primary election race).
“We don’t have borders in Southeast Queens. If you look at the policies and budget it reflects all of Southeast queens. What is most important is that we are doing the work collaboratively.”
Speaking on the hit the Democratic Party took during this election with its party placement candidate and his direct challenge from his opponent that he is a machine candidate, the Council Member nixed those ideas. “Most important, the Democratic Party…should reflect the values of the community. As a District Leader that is what is important to me. Austin Street understands…the values of Southeast Queens.”
Miller concedes he learned from his first term. “I think there is always things you learn by virtue of experience. The first year [it was] understanding the minutia of government, particularly city hall policy, budget [etc]. I think we have that part down. I think we have a better understanding of the institution that we can utilize in a better way. I think there are always things to learn and we also have the benefit of having experience around such as former [City Council] Deputy Leader Senator Comrie to advise you.”
Council Member I Daneek Miller and will face two challengers in the general election each from the Republican and Green Parties