As Adem Bunkeddeko introduces himself around the district, one possible liability for the 30-year-old, first-time candidate is a lack of experience. But he says in the case of longtime incumbent Congresswoman Yvette Clarke, experience hasn't been good for much.
"Ms. Clarke has to be held accountable for the record that she's put out for over the last decade. And it's been nothing," Bunkeddeko said.
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On the campaign trail, Bunkeddeko asserts that Clarke hasn't passed any legislation since she was first elected in 2006.
"I have passed legislation, and I will continue to do so," Clarke said.
She says he's got the facts wrong, pointing to a 2013 bill helping those mistakenly placed on the do-not-fly list, and amendments passed as part of larger legislation like the Affordable Care Act. She also touts her constituent services.
"That's what separates me from someone who is recently moved to the community, and has nothing to show for it," Clarke said.
That knock on Bunkeddeko refers to his upbringing in Queens. The son of Ugandan war refugees, the Harvard Business School graduate has spent time working for political campaigns, a Bed-Stuy nonprofit, and served on the local community board.
"The work that I've been doing, we need that kind of work done in this community on a more grander scale," Bunkeddeko said.
The New York Times editorial board last week agreed, endorsing him and writing, "Mr. Bunkeddeko's résumé is impressive, and his biography is inspiring."
His top priority is housing, in particular helping create pathways to home ownership for low- and middle-income Brooklynites.
But Clarke says she is proud of her record in the 9th congressional district, which cuts through central Brooklyn from Crown Heights all the way down to Sheepshead Bay.
"I'm actually working on behalf of the people of the 9th congressional district of New York," the congresswoman said. "I have been working for them since I was a member of the New York City Council."
Clarke's constituents will have final say in the primary on June 26.