Chappaqua resident and attorney Kristen Browde announced Thursday that she will be vying for the Democratic nomination for the 93rd Assembly District, the second candidate to step forward for the seat in as many days.
Browde said if elected to the Assembly she will continue the fight to strengthen gun laws, be a strong advocate on women’s issues, including ensuring the right to an abortion in the state constitution, reverse damage caused by the loss of the state and local income tax deduction above $10,000 and work help Democrats maintain a majority to end gerrymandering.
She said her background as a family law attorney has been helpful in assisting people reach common ground.
“I’ve proven effective on building coalitions to come together on things that are important to people,” said Browde, an award-winning television reporter for a New York City news station before practicing law.
On Wednesday, Bedford Supervisor Chris Burdick announced his candidacy for the seat being vacated by incumbent Assemblyman David Buchwald. As many as four other Democrats are entertaining entry into the race.
Browde, who ran unsuccessfully for New Castle supervisor in 2017, said she decided to jump in after Buchwald told her that he would be seeking the party’s nomination for Rep. Nita Lowey’s seat. Lowey announced Oct. 10 that she would be retiring at the end of her term. Buchwald, who has held the 93rd Assembly District seat since 2013, made his congressional candidacy official 10 days later.
Another motivation for Browde was that her youngest son, now a Horace Greeley High School sophomore, remarked how students participate in mandatory lockdown drills. Districts across the state are spending millions on security despite New York having some of the strictest gun laws in the nation, Browde said.
“At the end of the day you can buy a high-powered weapon and shoot up a school in the state of New York easier than buying a pack of Sudafed and that’s just wrong,” Browde said. “Our kids shouldn’t be growing up with this and we shouldn’t be having to spend millions of dollars to protect our schools against this kind of violence.”
She said the state must simplify the unnecessarily complex STAR program, which confuses many residents, particularly residents, who give up applying and fail to capitalize on the much-needed tax relief.
The need to have a Democratic-controlled state legislature following the 2020 election will also be critical because the next legislature will decide congressional redistricting, Browde said. With New York’s likely loss of one or two congressional seats, it’s possible that an effective Democrat such as Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney could be lumped into a more Republican area, which would put his congressional career at risk, she said.
“We have to be very, very careful about redistricting and we want sane, fair districts,” Browde said.
Browde made headlines with her run for supervisor in 2017 as the first transgender candidate to run for public office in New York State. She said she wasn’t planning on raising that issue during the upcoming campaign, but offered that what differentiates her from her likely opponents is that she’s the only woman in the race.
“I think the women of Westchester County recognize that it’s vitally important that women’s issues are discussed and to have the advocate for women’s issues up in Albany,” Browde said.
Thus far, no Republican candidate has stepped forward to run for the seat.
The 93rd Assembly District includes Bedford, Harrison, Lewisboro, Mount Kisco, New Castle, North Castle, North Salem, Pound Ridge and about half of White Plains.