Political Insiders Vie For Melissa Mark-Viverito’s East Harlem Council Seat

 A look at the candidates trying to replace Melissa Mark-Viverito in the city council. District 8 View Full Caption

HARLEM — For the first time since 2006, somebody not named Melissa Mark-Viverito will represent East Harlem in the City Council after the November election.

The two front-runners — Mark-Viverito’s political protégé Diana Ayala and state Assemblyman Robert Rodriguez — are both political insiders both equipped with six-figure war chests and long lists of endorsements.

Ayala, who has never held elected office, most recently worked to connect seniors with social services, before moving to Mark-Viverito’s office. Although she is grateful for her political mentor, Ayala is ready to stand on her own.

“I think

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