Restler will face Community Board 1 Chairman Chris Olechowski in the upcoming election. Olechowski is backed by Assemblyman Vito Lopez, the Kings County Democratic Party head that Restler has openly criticized.
Outside of Borough Hall on Monday, July 30, Reslter stood with 13 of Brooklyn's elected officials formally endorsing the committeeman.
“In my years of service I can honestly state that I have never met a district leader as committed as Lincoln,” said Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez.
In his first term Restler, a Brooklyn native, worked on projects like attracting a grocery store to Fort Green, advocating for affordable housing and pushing for more public transpiration regarding the L and G trains.
“His personal integrity and his progressive ideals are immeasurable, and make him by far the best candidate for state committeeman or district leader of the 50th Assembly District,” added Velazquez.
“Lincoln represents the best of Brooklyn,” said Borough President Marty Markowitz. “He serves his constituents and does what he thinks is right.”
Markowitz went on to discuss Restler's youthful drive, and his reputation as a progressive and reformer.
“I know this is going to be, probably, the easiest election ever that you'll face,” Markowitz predicted.
Restler spoke about the need for youth in the Democratic Party.
“I believed that this office, that most folks had never even heard of, could be a platform for effective real substantive change in our community,” he said. “And I'm very proud to say two years later that we have accomplished that.”
“We have improved mass transit, we have expanded green space, we have worked to preserve the affordability of our neighborhood,s but we have only just begun,” he said of his first term. “We've got two more big years of fighting ahead of us.”
Chris Owens, district leader in the 52nd District, said that the rally shouldn't be necessary.
“This is a tragedy,” he said. “We should not have to stand here and make the case to the public that somebody who is known by everybody in the district deserves support. Because he has the people's support, he doesn't have the establishment's support.”
He went on to criticize Lopez.
“He is being challenged because the county leader [Lopez] doesn't like the fact that he speaks his mind,” said Owens. “Lincoln Restler has been at the forefront of the reform effort to bring transparency and sense to the Democratic Party.”
Owens wasn't the only one to criticizes Lopez openly.
“The chairman of the Kings County Democratic party decided that Lincoln Restler doesn't represent the best interest of our communities,” said Velazquez. “We are here to say the Kings County Democratic chairman is wrong."