NKD: Shameless Vito's Proxy Drive

According to Alex Low, president of the New Kings Democrats, a mailer inviting Brooklyn Democrats to an upcoming county meeting contained a stamped, self-addressed postcard asking them to designate disgraced Brooklyn Democratic boss Vito Lopez as their proxy.

In what Low sees as an effort to deter members and the press from showing up, the meeting has been moved from downtown Brooklyn to Manhattan Beach, 30 blocks from the nearest subway stop.

Lopez has used the same dirty tricks for years, Low said.  The notice, which looks like a jury summons, tells recipients that if they sign, date and mail the proxy to Lopez, they don't have to go to the meeting.

Using the proxy trick, Lopez, who ends up holding hundreds of votes at the biennial county meeting -- often enough to outvote the people who actually attend -- could hang on to his power after a new party chair is elected on September 19.

Historically, Lopez has wielded his proxies to consolidate his power and curb reform efforts.

It was proxies that allowed Lopez to put 11 hand-picked "at-large" voting members on the executive committee to ensure that he would have the necessary votes to re-elect himself as Democratic party leader.

NKD called on county committee members to discard the proxy requests and come to the county meeting ready to rock and roll.

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