April 5, 2021 By Christina Santucci
Two progressive candidates announced Saturday that they are endorsing one another as they both seek political office in Queens.
Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer, who is running for Queens Borough President, and Flushing City Council candidate John Choe said that they are supporting each other in their respective campaigns.
Van Bramer is vying to replace Queens Borough President Donovan Richards, who won a special election for the seat last year.
Choe, who is the executive director of the Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce, is one of 11 candidates competing for the Council seat now occupied by Peter Koo, according to the city’s Campaign Finance Board.
Both Koo and Van Bramer are unable to run again for council seat due to term limits.
Van Bramer said he was thrilled to endorse Choe and to receive Choe’s backing.
“John is a fierce champion for Flushing and Murray Hill small businesses, especially in the face of this dual pandemic of COVID and Asian hate,” Van Bramer said in a statement.
Choe noted that he and Van Bramer “have fought together for two decades to empower our communities in opposition to luxury developers displacing local residents and small business owners in neighborhoods like Flushing, Long Island City and Sunnyside.”
Both opposed the Special Flushing Waterfront District development project, which was approved by the City Council in December. Choe has been an outspoken critic of the plan, and Van Bramer was one of 5 votes against the project when it came before the Council.
Several Flushing-based community groups – including the Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce – are currently suing the Dept. of City Planning, the Planning Commission and City Council over the project.
“I’m proud to have fought side by side with Jimmy for affordable housing, good jobs, public transit, libraries and the arts as well as fighting for the human rights of all, including immigrants, people of color and lesbian, gay and transgender New Yorkers,” Choe said.
Following their cross-endorsement announcement, Van Bramer and Choe visited Flushing together to talk to small business owners, who have been affected by the pandemic and anti-Asian violence.
Joining @johnchoe4nyc today in Flushing for #smallbizsat to talk to local business owners affected not only by the pandemic but by the rise in violent hate crimes against the AAPI community. pic.twitter.com/pDeRQukVU5
— Jimmy Van Bramer (@JimmyVanBramer) April 3, 2021