NEW YORK, NY (May 23, 2018) — At the New York Democratic Convention on Wednesday, Alliance for Quality Education Advocacy Director Zakiyah Ansari nominated gubernatorial candidate Cynthia Nixon to become the State Democratic party’s candidate for New York governor.
Ms. Ansari’s remarks at the convention focused on inequity and underfunding in New York’s public schools, which has worsened dramatically under Governor Cuomo. Although the Governor frequently claims that average spending per pupil statewide is too high, the spending gap between the wealthiest and poorest school districts in the state has grown 24 percent during his time in office. Factoring in inflation, Governor Cuomo has only increased school aid by 1.2 percent annually over the past eight years. Read Ms. Ansari’s full remarks here.
“Andrew Cuomo says we spend too much [on education]. I know whose children he is talking about when he says we spend too much. It is children who look like my children. Black children. Brown children. Immigrant children. Low income white children.
“Like me Cynthia Nixon is a proud public-school graduate and like me she is the proud mother of public school students. She knows what quality public education means. She knows what it takes to deliver that education for every child. She knows that our education system, like our society is facing tremendous challenges of racial and economic injustice. She knows that for far too long, from George Pataki to Andrew Cuomo, Albany has fed our children and families a long line of excuses and delays when it comes to equitable funding for our public schools.”
I am convinced that under this governor our children will never see the classroom resources they deserve. Governor Cuomo has so many excuses that I am reminded of Dr. Martin Luther King’s words in his Letter from a Birmingham Jail, “For years now I have heard the word “wait.” It rings in the ear of every Negro with a piercing familiarity. This “wait” has almost always meant “never.” It has been a tranquilizing thalidomide, relieving the emotional stress for a moment, only to give birth to an ill-formed infant of frustration. We must come to see with the distinguished jurist of yesterday that “justice too long delayed is justice denied.”
“This campaign isn’t just about Cynthia Nixon. It’s about a Democratic Party that fights for its voters — not just its corporate donors. It’s about the communities who are tired of being beaten down and always put last. I’m ready to fight. We’re all ready to fight back. Cynthia is ready to fight and Cynthia is ready to lead. She’s got my vote, I am asking you to give her yours.”