People in the 32nd City Council District, as well as in the overlapping state Assembly and Senate districts in South Queens and the Rockaways, have for decades voted for moderate representatives, of both parties.

Joe Addabbo Jr. Eric Ulrich. Phil Goldfeder. Audrey Pheffer. Stacey Pheffer Amato. Serf Maltese. Moderates all, and while largely Democratic, not completely — two are Republicans.

Now the district faces a major decision: whether to continue that tradition and send a centrist to City Hall or take a sudden leap leftward into dangerous, unaffordable territory. It is vital that the people of the district — residents of parts or all of Howard Beach, Ozone Park, South Ozone Park, Woodhaven, Richmond Hill, Broad Channel and western Rockaway — maintain their tradition of political moderation.

This year that means voting for Republican Joann Ariola.

Ariola has been fighting for the community in various roles for decades — as a member of Community Board 10, of her children’s school’s Parent Association and the 106th Precinct Community Council, and as president of both the Lindenwood Alliance and, after a merger, the present-day Howard Beach Lindenwood Civic Association.

A vote for Ariola is a vote for common sense, for moderate policies in support of safer streets and investment in schools, whether traditional public, charter or private, as well as parks and infrastructure.

“I was raised in this district, I raised my children in this district and now my grandchildren are being raised in this district,” Ariola told the Chronicle, pledging to support policies and programs that will help stem an “exodus” of people who have been leaving the area.

They’re leaving, she said, because public safety and quality of life are in decline. We do not believe that electing Ariola’s opponent, teacher and activist Felicia Singh, would reverse the trend.

Though she has noble goals, Singh’s policies are mostly the wrong ones. Primary among them: She’s fully on board with the incredibly misguided “Defund the Police” movement and wants to cut the NYPD’s budget by $1 billion. That’s absolute folly. It’s nothing but an emotional reaction to cases of police misconduct that will achieve nothing. To take just one example: You want better-trained police who will react well to the situations they find themselves in? Guess what? Training costs money. “Defunding” would do nothing good for anyone, as radical jurisdictions where Singh’s beliefs hold sway, such as Minneapolis and Portland, Ore., have quickly learned. We don’t need that here.

Other than the NYPD, of course, Singh is on board with jacking up spending to cover expanded social programs and the like. But the city is already facing a projected $4 billion deficit next fiscal year, and unlike the past two years, there will be no federal stimulus money to bail us out. After the recklessness of Mayor de Blasio’s approach — especially expanding the costly city workforce to unprecedented levels — we need every bit of prudence and moderation in the City Council that we can get.

This is, after all, a group that just got a statue of Thomas Jefferson removed from City Hall, because he was one of 12 presidents who owned slaves. That’s insane. Jefferson is among our greatests Founders, despite his flaws. And the incoming City Council will likely be even nuttier than the one that’s there now.

It’s telling that among all the sitting Democratic officials in the area — Addabbo, Pheffer Amato, Assemblywoman Jenifer Rajkumar, even District Leader Frank Gulluscio — none has endorsed Singh. In fact, Goldfeder, Pheffer Amato’s predecessor in the Assembly, crossed party lines to endorse Ariola. If you’re a Democrat, do the same. We urge all to vote for Joann Ariola, whom we gladly endorse for City Council District 32.

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