Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Junior is running for another term in office but he's facing a Democratic primary challenge by an opponent who says he's the anti-politician in the campaign. NY1's Erin Clarke filed the following report.
Mark Escoffrey-Bey says it's time for Ruben Diaz Junior to go. The man who is challenging Diaz for the borough's top post says Bronx politics needs new blood.
"I put people first and I will bring back integrity to politics," said Escoffrey-Bey. "I don't believe in pay to play politics. I'm a strong stance for education and fair economics and by putting me in office there will be no more pay for play politics, there'll be, your concerns will not be ignored."
Escoffrey-Bey is a Jamaican immigrant who has called the Bronx home for 37 years. The husband and father of two boys runs a copying business in the borough. He says he knows he has an uphill battle running against an incumbent, but that his previous election as a party leader of Assembly District 77 shows he can break through the so-called Bronx Democratic establishment.
"When I took that on they said it was like an impossible task because everyone is so entrenched, you know, and they're protecting each other. But I ran and I won," Escoffrey-Bey said.
Should he win the race, Escoffrey-Bey says he will not support elected officials he feels are not serving the community. He also says he will make sure Bronx students have access to technology that can help them succeed.
"I want to see tablets for every students in the Bronx here in the schools," Escoffrey-Bey said.
After one term, Escoffrey-Bey says he would move on.
"I'm not there to sit down and run and run again. I'm there to open it up so that we can have good leadership," said Escoffrey-Bey. "We can no longer afford to let politicians think that this is an inherited birthright."
The Democratic Primary takes place on September 10.
The winner of that race will square off against the Green Party Candidate, Carl Lundgren.