New York CIty Council Member Ben Kallos


Elections are vital to preserving democracy. As a member of the&nbsp;<a href="; target="_BLANK"><strong>New York Democratic Lawyers Council</strong></a>, I had the opportunity to help build a coalition of lawyers and others dedicated to fostering universal participation and trust in the electoral process by ensuring that all eligible person can register to vote easily, vote simply, fairly, without intimidation, and that all votes are counted on open and reliable voting systems. While rising to the position of State Coordination Committee Chair, I had the opportunity to organize and manage over 4,000 New York attorneys and 350 New York law students, who helped protect our right to elect&nbsp;<a href="; target="_BLANK"><strong>Barack Obama</strong></a>&nbsp;as President and coordinate election protection for U.S. Senator&nbsp;<a href="; target="_BLANK"><strong>Kirsten Gillibrand</strong></a>'s first election to Congress, helping to&nbsp;<a href=",_2006&quot; target="_BLANK"><strong>take back the Democratic majority</strong></a>&nbsp;in the&nbsp;<a href="; target="_BLANK"><strong>House of Representatives</strong></a>. While working with this organization, I first discovered that over 800,000 New Yorkers had been dropped from the New York State Voter Registration List and without much time before the election, I created&nbsp;<a href="; target="_BLANK"><strong></strong></a>, to help 12 million New Yorkers verify their voter registration. Since its creation&nbsp;<a href="; target="_BLANK"><strong></strong></a>&nbsp;has verified voter registrations for over 35,000 New Yorkers.<br><br>As Chief of Staff to&nbsp;<a href="; target="_BLANK"><strong>Assemblyman Jonathan L. Bing</strong></a>, I had the opportunity to work on ground breaking legislation to allow New Yorkers to&nbsp;<a href="; target="_BLANK"><strong>register to vote online</strong></a>. As your City Council member I will fight for&nbsp;<strong>transparent</strong>&nbsp;elections using a&nbsp;<a href="; target="_BLANK"><strong>voter verifiable paper trail</strong></a>,&nbsp;<strong>open</strong>&nbsp;voting machines with hardware and software can be reviewed by the City or State, and&nbsp;<strong>accountability</strong>&nbsp;with the requirement that with a transition to a paper based ballot, that all optical scanned paper ballots be posted online for the people to verify and audit should they so choose.

Our Town The Education of Ben Kallos by DANIEL FITZSIMMONS

The Education of Ben Kallos

Meet the 32-year-old who could be your next city councilmember.

Ben Kallos is not your typical Upper East Sider.

He went to state school because, he said, he couldn’t afford an Ivy League education. His Hungarian grandparents immigrated to New York in the 1950s. He grew up on the East Side but went to high school at Bronx Science. He got his law degree, worked in private practice, then the New York State Assembly and a good government group.

None of that has stopped the 32-year-old from winning the Democratic primary for City Council on the Upper East Side. Kallos, barring an upset by his Republican counterpart, David Garland, would succeed Jessica Lappin in district five come November. (Over the weekend, Kallos won the endorsement of U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney for the post.)

New York Observer Electoral Victors Call for Campaign Finance Reform by Kamelia Kilawan

Electoral Victors Call for Campaign Finance Reform

Various winners in City Council primaries gathered with members of Common Cause New York on the steps of City Hall today to castigate the influence of independent expenditures, especially Jobs for New York, a group backed by real estate interests.

'Campaign finance is a great equalizer, it allows idealist candidates who are reformers to get elected without being in debt to the very special interest we are running against. In my race the most frequent contribution was 10 dollars,' said Mr. Kallos.

Newsday NYC: Guerilla Theater and a Skeptical State-of-the-Guv Message by Dan Janison

NYC: Guerilla Theater and a Skeptical State-of-the-Guv Message

Over the weekend, a movement calling itself 'Money-Out Voters-In" held a "day of action" targeting the campaign-funding issues around Super PACs and the Supreme Court's "people-as-corporations" ruling in the Citizens United case.

New York Observer's PolitickerNY The Redistricting Lawsuit’s Lawyer Discusses Its Impact in Harlem and More [Video] by Colin Campbell

The Redistricting Lawsuit’s Lawyer Discusses Its Impact in Harlem and More [Video]

At Upper East Side City Council candidate Benjamin Kallos’ unique redistricting-themed fundraiser last night, Mark Favors, the lead plaintiff in the redistricting lawsuit that led to court-drawn congressional lines in New York, was the guest of honor and had some interesting thoughts on the redistricting situation, especially from his perspective as an African-American resident of Harlem.

Watch Mr. Favor's specific remarks by clicking