May 17, 2022 By Christian Murray
An Elmhurst resident launched his campaign in Maspeth Tuesday to nab the 30th Assembly District seat.
Ramón Cando, who is a Democratic district leader, officially declared his candidacy at the triangle at 69th Street and Grand Avenue. He is running on a public safety platform and is vying to replace Brian Barnwell, who announced last month that he is not seeking reelection.
The Democratic primary will consist of Steven Raga and Cando. The district, which has undergone significant change due to redistricting, covers the neighborhoods of Woodside and Elmhurst, along with parts of Maspeth.
“Public Safety is job number 1. Every day we hear of shootings, hate crimes and robberies throughout our city and state. Gun violence jeopardizes us all. No more excuses and pandering politics.”
Cando, who immigrated to the United States in the 1990s, was quick to attack Raga.
“While my opponent, in his failed City Council run ran as a chair leader for the defund the police movement, my commitment to our law enforcement is unwavering. Defund the police is a clear and present danger to us all.”
Raga in his unsuccessful bid for city council last year did say that the NYPD budget should be reduced, although noted that any reduction should be reallocated to social services programs, such as mental health.
Cando, who is closely aligned with former New York City Councilmember Hiram Monserrate, said that he will promote a four-point plan for a safer New York.
He said that he would address bail reform, increase criminal and civil penalties for gun traffickers, increase mental health services and increase funding for the police. The NYPD budget, however, is determined by the city– although Albany does fund the state police that has about 5,000 troops.
Cando, who works in the construction industry and is a union member of Local 78 LIUNA, currently resides in the 35th Assembly district but with redistricting he will be living in the revised 30th District.
He touts himself as a “common sense” Democrat who is an advocate for public safety.