By Sabina Mollot
Sander Hicks, a Brooklyn Democrat who tried to run against Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney in the June primary — only to be knocked off the ballot after a challenge from another opponent — is hoping to run again as an independent candidate.
But first he’s suing the Board of Elections.
According to Hicks, he had nearly 5,500 signatures, which is far more than what he needed — 3,500 to run in the general election. However, he said after he submitted his petitions last month, the BOE responded in a letter to reject his petitions over the fact that he’d put two addresses on his cover sheet (one his residence, the other his office for mailing purposes.) The letter, Hicks said, was dated August 3, but he only received it a week later, and when he resubmitted the petitions on August 13, he was told he was too late. He filed his lawsuit on Friday in the New York City Supreme Court and served the board with papers on Tuesday.
“The legal department wouldn’t even meet with me,” Hicks said, calling the issue a “clerical error.”
He added, “The Board of Elections is a Kafka-esque bureaucracy and it doesn’t have to be that way.”
Adding insult to injury, he said, is that in his second attempt to get on the ballot, he’d had to petition during the hottest month of the year and spend a significant chunk of campaign cash to hire, at one point, half a dozen people to help collect signatures. “Some were okay, some were rock stars, super progressive,” he said.
During the primary race, Hicks got 2,100 signatures (well over the minimum 1,250). However, ultimately enough were successfully challenged as being invalid by a challenge filed in court by fellow Democrat Suraj Patel, that Hicks wasn’t allowed to run. He told Town & Village at the time he’d be running as an independent candidate in November. Meanwhile, this time, there’s been no challenge from another candidate.
In response, a representative for the BOE confirmed the lawsuit, and said that Hicks was 10 days late in filing his independent nomination, which was due on August 3. There will be a hearing in court on August 30.
Hicks, who owns a carpentry business in Maspeth and used to be an independent publisher, has written two books alleging 9/11 coverups. They are Slingshot to the Juggernaut: Total Resistance to the Death Machine Means Complete Love of the Truth (2012) and The Big Wedding: 9/11, the Whistle-Blowers & The Cover-Up (2005).
His platform, along with calling for more independent investigation into the 2001 terror attacks, is also anti-Zionist, and he considers himself a peace activist. He has blasted Maloney over her support of Israel and other issues.
If Hicks’ lawsuit is successful, he’ll face off against Maloney, Green Party candidate Scott Hutchins and Republican Eliot Rabin.