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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Diaz Hopeful on Takeover

Assemblyman Ruben Diaz, Jr. earlier today at
Lehman College (Photo: Jordan Moss)

We just ran into Assemblyman Ruben Diaz, Jr. at the groundbreaking for the new Science building at Lehman College.

He seemed fairly confident that he and his fellow Rainbow Rebels would succeed in taking over the leadership of the Bronx Democratic County Committee when the Committee meets on Sunday at the Utopia Paradise Theatre.

He said last Sunday's rally at Co-op City "showed everyone that we have a sizeable amount of County Committee members and a majority of the district leader vote."

I asked Diaz, who is running for Bronx borough president, what all this means to the average Bronxite -- what would the new regime do differently? He said that would be really a question for Asssemblyman Carl Heastie , the Rebels' choice to succeed Assemblyman Jose Rivera as chairman of the County Committee. But he did say he believed the result would be to empower local Democratic clubs and to be more inclusive with regards to the borough's diverse demographics. He also said that there are 500,000 registered Bronxites who regularly don't turn out to vote and that the Committee's challenge woudl be to activate those voters as well as energize young voters.

I asked him if he felt last week's court action barring the Rebels for staging their own County Commitee meetings was a defeat of sorts.

His reponse: "We didn't win it in game 4. But we'll win it in game 7 [on Sunday] and we'll still win the championship."


  1. I gotta tell you, I'm tempted to remove this kind of unsubstantiated name-calling from the comments section (especially from a reader who chooses not to identify her/himself), But in the interest of having the most open forum possible, I'm going to leave it in this instance.
    It goes without saying for our regular readers, but all views and opinions are welcome on the West Bronx Blog. We also welcome criticism of elected officials. But it is not at all enlightening to your fellow readers to attack someone as a thug, etc. What do any of us learn from that and why should we believe you? Maybe there's something specific in this elected official's record you would like to criticize? If so, we're all ears. Otherwise, keep it to your anonymous self.
    Thank you, and please everyone, keep the comments coming.
    Jordan Moss, Editor

  2. Jordan since you need specificity, perhaps I should cite the Department of Investigations probe of the Diaz clan, the fact that the father and son live out of the district and that there was history of drug dealing.

    I have attached at NY Daily News story on the first matter which references the NY Times original story and if necessary I can provide evidence of the others as well.

    Bob Kappstatter's piece:
    A Bronx state senator and his assemblyman son are being investigated by the FBI, the Daily News has learned.
    Federal agents probing state Sen. Ruben Diaz and his son, Assemblyman Ruben Diaz Jr., walked into the Bronx office of the city Board of Elections yesterday and slapped officials there with a subpoena, sources said.
    The agents seized voter petitions and voter registration records related to the Diazes, and apparently are investigating allegations of voter fraud, the sources said.
    Neither Diaz could be reached for comment last night.
    The investigation is the latest in a recent string of high-profile criminal probes, indictments and convictions involving Bronx politicians, the largest number since several scandals in the 1980s.
    The younger Diaz, considered a popular and energetic politician among his Democratic supporters, has been viewed as a potential candidate for Bronx borough president.
    The elder Diaz, who also is a minister, had previously run afoul of authorities for his misappropriation of government funds and his residency.
    Under a deal cut with then-state Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, Diaz repaid the state $5,000 in 2005 after he improperly used state and federal funds given to the nonprofit Soundview Community in Action group to buy furniture for his district office and loudspeakers for his campaign.
    Diaz was previously the $65,000-a-year chief executive of the nonprofit group, and his ex-wife was paid $16,000 a year by the group to be a consultant.
    Workers at the nonprofit had accused Spitzer of failing to fully investigate their claims of more widespread misuse of federal aid. They also accused Diaz of forcing workers to toil for his campaign while they were paid by the nonprofit.

  3. Anyone can be investigated, but, what were the results? Unfortunately, when you put yourself out in the public eye, haters try to undermine your credibility.
    It's sad that when you try to represent the community, there are some that would consider your service a threat to their own self-interests.

  4. we are still waiting on the results. he sure hasn't been cleared has he?

  5. Oh please already! The NY Daily News article was mailed all over his district before the Primary and still Assemblyman Diaz won by the highest voting percentage (85%) of any elected official in NYC who had a primary that day.

    So obviously his community does not agree with the hater who likes to name call and cast aspersions, most likely the individual in question was working for Mr. Diaz's opposition on Primary day, well you sure did a great job! If I were you I would quit while I am still ahead... Enough said.

  6. quit while I'm ahead? Maybe that's what Mr Diaz needs to do and be thankful his district elected him. He needs to rethink the whole BP race idea, because the borough as a hole certainly won't! He needs to stay in his little area of the Bronx and quit while he's ahead!!!!


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