Schneiderman Secures Backing of Long Island-based Progressive Group

City Hall

By David Freedlander

State Senator Eric Schneiderman is slated to receive the endorsement of the Long Island Progressive Coalition today in his run for the Democratic nomination for attorney general.

The group, a 31-year-old grassroots activist organization, hails from the backyard of one of Schneiderman’s top challengers to the Democratic nomination, Nassau county district attorney Kathleen Rice.

“This endorsement is not about [Rice] not doing certain things,” said Lisa Tyson, the group’s president. “This is about believing in people who can do certain things that we have cared about for a long time.”

The LIPC’s focus has been on campaign finance reform, affordable housing, and clean energy issues on Long Island, according to Tyson.

Tyson said that Rice had not rebuffed the group during her time in office, but that instead the LIPC and the DA’s office have not focused on the same issues.

In fact, Tyson noted, the LIPC is part of the Working Families Party, which gave Rice their line in both 2005 and 2009.

The endorsement could help bolster Schneiderman’s progressive bonafides as Democrats prepare for their state convention next week. His backers are trying to make the case that Rice is too moderate for a Democratic primary.

Schneiderman said that the endorsement showed the depth of his base.

“I am proud of the fact that I have the support of progressive organizations around the state,” he said. “I expect to get a lot of support from progressives and others out on Long Island.”