About Erica Manney
Hi! I’m Erica.
I am the Queens County Committee member in ED/AD 022/25.
Your first question may be … what is Queens County Committee? There’s a good chance you have never heard of it — I didn’t until a year or so ago. This is a great link that explains what it is. But the short story is — the Democratic party is governed by committees of citizens who are registered Democrats, from the national level down to state and community-level. County is the most local level of party governance in New York.
Okay, so what do committee members do?
- Choose local judges
- Nominate the Democratic Party’s choice for a special election in state legislature races (This is particularly important because 1 in 3 current legislators were chosen in a special election!)
- Help create the Party platform.
- Organize local Democrats.
But in reality — they haven’t been doing much of this. That’s why I am running. The seats in our electoral district have been vacant for years. As best I can tell, almost a decade. The current Queens Democratic party, led by Joseph Crowley, fills these seats with his colleagues, who rubber stamp whatever it is he’s decided. The committee is only required to meet every two years. Along with fellow progressives — we want to change that, and make the Queens Democratic party a party that is truly represented by the people.
Okay, so the seat is vacant. Why is there an election all of a sudden?
Because the Queens County Democratic party is rife with corruption, and they are filling the seats with elderly members of the Democratic clubs that may not even realize they are on the ballot. Sounds crazy? Yup. The NY Times just did a piece on it. Read it here.
My opponent, Helen Prager, appears to be a retired former educator who lives in Jamaica (yes, that’s legal, even though our electoral district is only the few blocks from Springfield to Cloverdale), and has reportedly tried to remove herself from the ballot once she found out her district leader put her name in for the seat. So,we’re only having an election, because the party is trying to keep the seats from people who want to run for office.
So, who am I, and what do I believe in?
I’m almost a lifelong Queens resident (born in Brooklyn, was a toddler in Long Island), but was raised in Bay Terrace. I went to CUNY Queens College and studied Anthropology, where I met my husband (who now teaches there.). I’ve lived in Rego Park, Kew Gardens Hills, and now we’re raising our toddler daughter and geriatric dog in Oakland Gardens. You’ve likely seen me out playing (and cleaning up after) them, in our courtyard, or walking to daycare, or to get something to eat.
What do I believe?
I believe that we have an opportunity to make real change, if we organize. I was always somewhat involved in politics, but it wasn’t until I started volunteering in Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s campaign in NY-14 that I really understood the power of a movement, and how much progressive Democrats really need to get together and make things happen. There are a tremendous amount of amazing organizers doing the work, and I see this as my part to help. I won’t get a chance to vote or enact on most of the things and policies I believe in as part of the Queens County Committee, but my guiding philosophies are:
- Black Lives Matter
- Pro-Choice / Reproductive Justice
- LGBTQIA+ Rights
- No Human is Illegal
- Science is Real. Climate Change is Real.
- People Deserve a Living Wage
- Injustice Anywhere is a Threat To Justice Everywhere
- Millionaires should pay their fair share
- Corporations are NOT people, and we should get money out of politics
Have more questions? Email me at my firstname.lastname@example.org