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Goldfeder secures Schumer’s backing

Phil Goldfeder’s state Assembly campaign got a major boost Monday after he was endorsed by his former boss, U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.).

Goldfeder was Schumer’s director of intergovernment affairs for three years before stepping down a month ago to run for the Assembly seat that became vacant after Audrey Pheffer took the Queens county clerk position.

He is running against Republican District Leader Jane Deacy to succeed Pheffer.

Schumer said inside the La Villa Pizzeria in the Lindenwood Shopping Center that he was endorsing Goldfeder “because I know two things: I know this district and I know Phil and the two are a perfect match.”

Schumer said what the Assembly district, which includes Howard Beach, Ozone Park, Broad Channel and part of the Rockaways, needs is “an Assembly member who is going to put the community first” and someone “who never forgets where they came from.”

“That’s who Phil Goldfeder is. How do I know that? Because he’s worked for me for three years,” Schumer said. “Even when he was in my office, Phil worked on issues that were of great concern to the 23rd Assembly District. He’s not someone who forgot about the issues of hard work and caring” for the community.

Schumer said he was not making the endorsement “out of obligation or loyalty.”

“I am here out of enthusiastic dedication to these communities,” he said.

Goldfeder said his job in Schumer’s office was “to focus on communities” and that is what he would do if elected.

He said jobs and the economy are the most important issues to the district.

“Party has nothing to do with creating jobs ... and that’s something I’m going to take with me to Albany,” Goldfeder said.

“Our workforce is struggling,” he said. “We need to give them the tools and training they need to work in this economy.”

If elected, Goldfeder said his first piece of legislation would be to get rid of the toll on the Cross Bay Bridge, which he called “a noose around the necks of small businesses in this community.”

Deacy also listed the Cross Bay Bridge toll as among her top issues and signed a taxpayer protection pledge Tuesday, which promises Queens residents that she will vote against any tax increases if she is elected.

“Families in our community are struggling to simply make ends meet, especially with skyrocketing property taxes, utility fees, bridge tolls and other taxes that drive the cost of living through the roof,” said Deacy. “The people of Queens need protection from state government’s addiction to tax hikes. Unlike the career politicians in Albany, when I make a promise, I keep it. That is why I signed Americans for Tax Reform’s Taxpayer Protection Pledge.”

Deacy noted that Goldfeder had not signed the pledge.

“Even though unemployment levels are through the roof and people are leaving New York in droves, my opponent still refuses to make a pledge to our community to oppose tax increases,” she said. “I am ready to be the voice for Queens in state government that our community has lacked for too long; a voice for fiscal sanity and accountability in government.”

Reach reporter Howard Koplowitz by e-mail at hkoplowitz@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4573.

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