Last week, Columbia was kicked out of New York’s 13th Congressional district, and Clyde Williams, who’s running to represent District 13 in Congress, thinks he knows why. According to Capital:
The “political leadership was afraid of the whites on the Upper West Side” not supporting them anymore, Williams told a group of small business owners he met with in Washington Heights this morning.
Those political leaders “are more interested in maintaining their political power than actually doing something that benefits the community,” said Williams. “I think it’s a travesty that they’ve given up the greatest economic engine in upper Manhattan. Now it’s become part of the Upper West Side, Jerry Nadler’s district.”
Williams’ worry that “the political leadership” of the district prioritized racial politics over economic advancement meshes with what he told us in an exclusive interview over Spring Break. At the time, no one knew whether the redistricting process would keep Columbia in District 13 or shift it over to District 10. “I hope that Columbia stays part of the district.” Williams told us. “I don’t know if it will,” he added, “but the bottom line is whether it stays part of the district or not, it’s a major component of what Upper Manhattan is about.” Even if Columbia didn’t stay in District 13, Williams argued, it would continue to provide economic opportunities to people in the district.