GOP challenging pols in northeast Queens 1

Ira Harris is challenging Assemblyman David Weprin.

Assemblyman David Weprin (D-Fresh Meadows) and Assemblywoman Nily Rozic (D-Fresh Meadows) will face Republican challengers in this fall’s election.

Usman Ali will face Rozic and Ira Harris, a Queens Village resident and business owner, is challenging Weprin.

Each of the candidates is supported by the Queens County Republican Party, according to Bob Turner, its chairman. Neither Ali — who could not be reached for comment — nor Harris has ever run for public office before.

“[Ali] is a willing and able young man,” Turner told the Chronicle. “We have a good process for screening and selecting good candidates and we’re very proud that these people stepped up.”

Harris describes himself as a “citizen,” not a “career politician.”

“I want to listen to the people’s problems and be a candidate for the people, not a candidate for Albany,” said Harris, who supports term limits and says he would not be a member of the Assembly for a long time. “I’m going there for a short time to do my business and see what I can do for the community.”

Although the GOP was supporting David Bressler to challenge Assemblyman Ed Braunstein (D-Bayside), the candidate dropped out after his petition signatures were successfully challenged, Turner said.


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