Audio: Liberal Organizer Tells NYC Activists Not to Mention Where They're From While Campaigning in Upstate New York

October 8, 2018

Liberal activists from New York City were bused up to New York's 19th Congressional District on Saturday to volunteer for Democratic nominee Antonio Delgado's campaign, but before they reached their destination, a female organizer told the volunteers not to say where they are from because the campaign is concerned about the optics of receiving outside support.

The Washington Free Beacon obtained audio of Kate Linker, president of Greater NYC for Change, telling a group of volunteers on a bus sponsored by Rep. Jerry Nadler (D., N.Y.) that the Delgado campaign is concerned about the optics of them visiting, saying that they should not post on social media that they are from New York City.

"One thing that I wanted to say that is important, if you post on social media, please do not mention that you are from New York City," Linker said. "The reason is, much though they love us, the Faso campaign on September 15th posted that the Delgado campaign was bussing in bus loads of New York City democratic socialists, bringing outsiders in to try to sway the campaign. And the [Delgado] campaign is understandably concerned about this."

Rep. John Faso is the Republican incumbent who Delgado is challenging.

Linker went on to say that the reason they are volunteering for Delgado is that they care about New York and their upstate neighbors, before reemphasizing the importance of not mentioning New York City on social media.

Linker's concerns stem back to mid-September, when Faso castigated his opponent's campaign for "bussing Democratic-Socialists up from Manhattan." The Free Beacon previously reported on a couple dozen liberal New York City activists being bussed up to the district and portrayed as campaign volunteers from the district.

The 19th district's chapter of the progressive Indivisible movement did not deny that some of the people brought up from Manhattan are democratic socialists, tweeting, "Democratic Socialists? Maybe," before attacking Faso and calling him one of the "traitors" in the Republican Party.

Brad Lander, a New York City council member, tweeted Saturday morning that he was "joining two busloads of people channeling our fury about [Brett] Kavanaugh into canvassing to defeat GOP Congress-members in NYS & PA this morning. " He went on to thank Linker, pictured in the tweet below, for organizing the trip.

There will be at least one other bus traveling from New York City to the 19th district this upcoming Saturday to campaign for Delgado.

The National Republican Congressional Committee slammed Delgado for being "extreme" and the most "out of touch candidate to ever run"  in the 19th district.

"Antonio Delgado is the most extreme, out of touch candidate to ever run in NY-19," said NRCC spokesman Chris Martin. "If he thinks busloads of New York City liberals are going to save him, he's in for a rude awakening come November."

Delgado is a former rapper and six-figure lawyer at Akin Gump, a top-50 law firm with over $1 billion in annual revenue that was the largest lobbying firm by revenue in the United States in 2017.

The Delgado campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment.