The Democratic primary might be over and the city of
Buffalo’s future nearly sealed, but that doesn’t mean that
Buffalonians don’t have feels about who their next mayor
coulda, shoulda, and woulda been.
BY HARPER S. E. BISHOP
Let’s assume that Byron Brown’s political network, including the governor of the great state of New York, Andrew Cuo-mo, and a war chest of over $1 million at his immediate
disposal, has influenced the outcome of the primary.
Still, many people wouldn’t be interviewed for this article
for fear of possible retribution or didn’t vote because of cyni-
cism in the face of a system that advantages the well-connect-
ed and maintains the status quo. There are also others who
consider the election of an African-American mayor in a high-
ly segregated city to be progress and are therefore unwilling to
give up on him. In neighborhoods across the city, there’s still a
belief—if only in the hearts and minds of those who remember
him back when—that Brown’s next term will focus primarily
on the marginalized and disenfranchised on both sides of Main
Street, specifically east of it.
To be fair, Byron Brown still has many admirers. A recent
Spectrum News/Siena College poll found that he has a seventy-four percent favorability rating and that at least fifty percent of
white and black voters support him. And the fact that seventy-eight percent believe that Buffalo is on the right track, points