Eric Ulrich

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Eric Ulrich
Member of the New York City Council from the 32nd District
Assumed office
February 24, 2009
Preceded byJoseph Addabbo, Jr.
Personal details
Born (1985-02-13) February 13, 1985 (age 34)
Ozone Park, New York
Political partyRepublican
Alma materSt. Francis College (B.A.)
Baruch College (M.P.A.)
WebsiteOfficial website

Eric Ulrich (born February 13, 1985) is a Member of the New York City Council representing the 32nd District. His constituency includes the neighborhoods of Belle Harbor, Breezy Point, Broad Channel, Hamilton Beach, Howard Beach, Lindenwood, Neponsit, Ozone Park, Rockaway Beach, Rockaway Park, South Ozone Park and Woodhaven in Queens. He is a Republican.

Ulrich is a moderate Republican,[1] breaking from conservatives on minimum wage legislation, his vocal opposition to President Donald Trump, and his support for rent stabilization. As City Councilman, he led oversight committees on Hurricane Sandy relief efforts, and publicly expressed disapproval with their speed and efficiency. Ulrich's constituents reside in parts of the Rockaway Peninsula and Howard Beach which were disproportionately affected by the storm. In public statements Ulrich called the relief efforts a "bureaucratic nightmare", said the city's chosen contractors were incapable of handling the residents' needs, and recommended the head of the city's Build-it-Back program be fired by the Mayor.[2]

Life and career[edit]

Ulrich was born and raised in Ozone Park, New York where he attended P.S. 63Q (Old South), a public elementary school, and later, Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a Catholic elementary school. After graduating from Cathedral Prep. Seminary High School, he became the first member of his family to earn a college degree. He holds a BA from St. Francis College and received his MPA in 2016 from CUNY Baruch College. Ulrich is divorced and has one daughter.

Ulrich worked for the Transportation Security Administration and the Kansas City Board of Elections for the borough of Lee's Summit. He taught religion at Xaverian High School (Bay Ridge, Brooklyn). He serves as the President of the Our Neighbors Civic Association of Ozone Park. He belongs to the Knights of Columbus, Kiwanis Club of Howard Beach, the National Political Science Honor Society-Pi Sigma Alpha, and New York Republican State Committee.

In 2005, aged 20, Ulrich ran for a Republican District Leader post, but lost by 124 votes. Two years later, he mounted another challenge and won.[3]

New York City Council[edit]

In February 2009, during a special election, Ulrich was elected to a seat on the New York City Council, defeating three more senior candidates in the 32nd district in southwest Queens.[4][5] Ulrich was re-elected in November 2009,[6][7] in 2013,[8] and in 2017.[9] He is barred by term limits from seeking re-election in 2021.

Ulrich broke with the New York State Republican Party platform on several issues, and says he is proud of his independence from party positions. He voted in favor of a minimum wage raise and voted twice to boost rent stabilization, making him the only Republican to do so.[10][11]

As of February 2018, Ulrich is one of only three Republicans in the New York City Council. He supported Melissa Mark-Viverito during her run for Council Speaker in 2013, an unpopular position for Republicans. Queens Republican Chair Bob Turner said that supporting Viverito "wouldn't help" Ulrich's standing in Republican circles.[12] Ulrich had chided Mark-Viverito for refusing to recite the Pledge of Allegiance with other Council-members during government functions, a position she changed in 2013 prior to her run for Speaker.[13][14]

For fiscal year 2015, Ulrich secured a $400,000 allocation to support local veterans' direct services. Five organizations were nominated to help veterans and their families with employment, mental health, and legal issues. Funding also supports programming for women veterans and newly returned service members.[15]

Hurricane Sandy recovery[edit]

Ulrich started a Committee with Mark Treyger to monitor the recovery effort following Hurricane Sandy.[16] Ulrich sharply criticized the pace of the recovery effort during oversight meetings in 2015 and 2016. He pointed to Build-it-Back as ineffective, pointing to cases where homeowners had been relocated for construction, only to learn that months had gone by with no development.

Chair of New York Council Veterans Committee[edit]

Ulrich serves as Chair of the New York City Council's Veterans Committee.[17] Following her election to Council Speaker (in which she had received support from Ulrich), Melissa Mark-Viverito appointed Ulrich to his Veterans Affairs post.[18] Ulrich refuted speculation that his support for Viverito was a quid pro quo for obtaining his Committee Chairmanship, and instead said that supporting her was his best option for bringing her attention to the needs of his constituents.[12][19] Since assuming the committee chairship in early 2014, Ulrich has held hearings on a range of topics examining local veterans' issues and how New York City government can combat these challenges.

Following remarks by presidential candidate Donald Trump that John McCain was not a war hero, Ulrich rejected his comments, calling them "a slap in the face to New York City’s veterans and their families, especially those who had been 'captured' as former POWs." Ulrich wrote a letter July 20, 2015 to Jamaica Hospital, urging the Board of Directors to remove Trump's name from the nursing home. The Trump Pavilion for Nursing and Rehabilitation was named after Mary Trump, and was built in 1975 with donations from Donald Trump's parents. The Trump name remains on the Pavilion.[20]

Other campaigns[edit]

2012 State Senate bid[edit]

In 2012, Ulrich ran for New York State Senate against incumbent Democratic Sen. Joe Addabbo in Senate District 15. While the Queens Republican Party endorsed a lesser-known challenger against him in the primary, Ulrich prevailed nonetheless.[21][22] During the campaign, Ulrich criticized Sen. Addabbo, who publicly said there was "an understanding" that Resorts World Casino in Queens would hire 70-80% locally from Queens. The Daily News found that 61% of the "top tier" positions were held by employees residing in Queens County.[23] On Election Day, Ulrich was defeated by Addabbo.[24]

Potential run for Mayor of New York City[edit]

Media speculated that Ulrich was a potential challenger to Bill De Blasio in the 2017 mayoral race, after his 2013 press conference on an unplowed street in Queens, criticizing the newly elected mayor for his handling of the heavy snowfall. Ulrich launched an exploratory committee on May 12, 2016, but did not ultimately run.[25][26][27]

Comments on 2016 presidential campaign[edit]

Ulrich endorsed John Kasich over Trump during his presidential run in 2016. When Trump became the presumptive nominee, Ulrich said he disliked Trump's offensive comments and speeches, but said he may vote for him should he "come around by [Election Day]".[28]

2019 New York City Public Advocate special election[edit]

Ulrich is running in the 2019 New York City Public Advocate special election that will take place on February 26, 2019. As the election is nonpartisan, Ulrich is running on the line titled Common Sense, although he is the only Republican in the race. Some of his endorsements include the Bronx GOP, Brooklyn GOP, Manhattan GOP, Queens GOP and Staten Island GOP, as well as the New York Daily News, which, on February 20, 2019, wrote "Ulrich stands apart on a key issue of the day: He welcomed Amazon coming to Long Island City as the rest of the field was tripping over itself to denounce the deal." [29] In addition to supporting Amazon coming to New York City, Ulrich is the only candidate to have opposed Mayor Bill de Blasio's plan to close Riker's Island and build community jails. In a debate that aired on NY1 in early February, Ulrich vowed to be Mayor de Blasio's "worst nightmare" if elected as Public Advocate.

In February 2019, New York Post contributor John Podhoretz wrote a column entitled "A Republican with a real chance to win an NYC-wide office," [30] which was featured in the New York Post. Podhoretz's New York Post column cites private polling - not commissioned by Ulrich or any of the campaigns - “that suggests Ulrich has a real shot at winning” the special election, leading with 22 percent. [31]

Election history[edit]

Election history
Location Year Election Results
NYC Council
District 32
2009 Special √ Eric Ulrich (R) 44.72%
Lew Simon (D) 32.20%
Geraldine Chapey (D) 11.59%
Eric Ricatto (R) 9.19%
NYC Council
District 32
2009 General √ Eric Ulrich (R) 58.74%
Frank Gulluscio (D) 41.26%
NY Senate
District 15
2012 General Joseph Addabbo, Jr. (D) 57.57%
Eric Ulrich (R) 42.36%
NYC Council
District 32
2013 General √ Eric Ulrich (R) 53.56%
Lew Simon (D) 46.37%
NYC Council
District 32
2017 General √ Eric Ulrich (R) 65.8%
Mike Scala 34.2% (D)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Republican Eric Ulrich mulls 2017 mayoral run against de Blasio". Retrieved 29 December 2017.
  2. ^ "Queens pol blasts de Blasio over 'broken' Build It Back program". Retrieved 29 December 2017.
  3. ^ Ulrich political profile, vote.nyc.ny.us (PDF)
  4. ^ Lauinger, John (2009-02-26). "New blood in 32nd District: 24-year-old GOP upstart grabs special election seat". New York Daily News.
  5. ^ Jonathan P. Hicks (1997-10-13). "Queens Council Incumbent, Once Critic, Is Now Criticized". New York Times.
  6. ^ NY1 News (2009-11-04). "NY1 Election results". NY1.[permanent dead link]
  7. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-25. Retrieved 2010-03-08.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  8. ^ Campanile, Carl (2013-11-06). "Councilman weathers Catsimatidis attacks to win re-election". New York Post. Retrieved 2018-02-27.
  9. ^ Martinez, Gina (2017-11-09). "Ulrich re-elected to third term with convincing win over Scala". Times Ledger. Retrieved 2018-02-27.
  10. ^ "Rival Candidates in State Senate Race Say They Won't Toe Party Lines". Gothamgazette.com:8080. Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  11. ^ "Breaking Ranks, Eric Ulrich Endorses Minimum Wage Hike". 22 May 2012. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  12. ^ a b "Mayor Eric Ulrich? He might go for it". Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  13. ^ "NYC Council speaker-wannabe suddenly embraces Pledge". Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  14. ^ "Before her speaker run, a councilwoman starts saying the pledge". Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  15. ^ Kristen Meriwether. "City Council Expands Funding Of Veterans Services". Gotham Gazette: The Place for New York Policy and Politics. Retrieved 3 March 2015.
  16. ^ "Council Members Pushing for Department of Investigation to Monitor Sandy Recovery". 30 June 2014. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  17. ^ "District 32 - Council Member - Republican". nyc.gov. Retrieved 3 March 2015.
  18. ^ "New Speaker Gives Her Allies Plum Posts". The New York Times. 23 January 2014. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  19. ^ "Ulrich wants Trump's name off Pavilion". Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  20. ^ "Remove Donald Trump's name from Jamaica Hospital Pavilion: Ulrich". Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  21. ^ "Ulrich proud to buck party - Queens Campaigner". Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  22. ^ Frantz, Karen (14 September 2012). "Ulrich defeats Reyes in GOP primary after campaign turns negative". Times Ledger. Retrieved 27 February 2018.
  23. ^ "Aqueduct racino's hiring practices for management". Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  24. ^ Frantz, Karen (7 November 2012). "Addabbo defeats Ulrich in key state Senate race". Times Ledger. Retrieved 27 February 2018.
  25. ^ "Sen.: My focus is re-election". Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  26. ^ "First steps toward a possible mayoral run". Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  27. ^ Campanile, Carl (2 February 2016). "GOPers think this 30-year-old councilman can unseat de Blasio". Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  28. ^ "Donald Trump - New York True". Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  29. ^ http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/ny-edit-public-advocate-20190218-story.html
  30. ^ https://nypost.com/2019/02/13/a-republican-with-a-real-chance-to-win-an-nyc-wide-office/
  31. ^ "Can a Republican Win a Citywide Race in N.Y.? Maybe, With Amazon's Help". New York Times. 19 February 2019. Retrieved 19 February 2019.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Joseph Addabbo, Jr.
New York City Council, 32nd District
2009–present
Incumbent