For the first time in the history of the Greek-American community, two candidates vying for the same Congressional seat came to The National Herald’s headquarters in Long Island City for a debate.
This is an important recognition of the important role the newspaper plays in our community, but the fact that these two candidates crossed swords in our conference room last Thursday is primarily a tribute to the community itself – whose voters live in the district that includes part of Long Island City, Astoria, and Manhattan’s East Side.
Regarding Greece and Cyprus, incumbent Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, a Democrat who first was elected in 1992, and her Republican rival Nick Di Iorio, disagreed not in substance but about the degree of their support for the community’s positions.
Both of them expressed emphatic support on national issues affecting Greece and Cyprus. They gave their full support, for example, to Cyprus, which is now being put to the test by Turkey’s provocative violation of its Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ.)
Nick Di Iorio is an impressive young politician who is obviously well-prepared for the challenges presented by the position he seeks. Moreover, he has the right approach to America’s interests regarding Greece and Cyprus. His appearance and performance only enhance his formidability as a candidate overall, and he could easily have gained the endorsement of this newspaper and the community. That we do not is not a slight to him, but rather a testament to his opponent.
How can we not endorse Carolyn Maloney, who has faithfully stood by the community since 1982, and fought hard on matters that concern us, on domestic matters and on the issues facing Greece and Cyprus?
How can we not endorse Maloney, whose name has been almost synonymous with the community’ s representation in Congress for many decades?
It is for these reasons that we urge our readers to vote with all their heart once again for Carolyn Maloney.
As for Nick Di Iorio, if he does not prevail, let him be patient: surely, there should be a place for him in Congress in the future.