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Long IslandPoliticsSpin Cycle

Harlem's Percy Sutton was political player, NYC fixture

Percy Sutton, who has died at 89, was a key political figure in Harlem, close with the Patersons (as in Gov. David and his dad, Basil), and Rep. Charles Rangel, ex-Mayor David Dinkins and others. Among his other roles, Sutton served as Manhattan borough president. What even a person who follows such things might not know is that his father was born into slavery. See story here.

Said Assemb. Keith Wright, in one of the many statements that has been flowing in with news of Sutton's death.

"I've always been proud to sit in the same Assembly seat once held by a man I consider a mentor. What many people don't know about Percy is he worked very, very hard in so many ways -- and put himself through law school working at the Post Office, as a token booth clerk and as an auxiliary police officer, a role he kept even while Manhattan Borough President. He's the person most responsible for the Harlem Renaissance through the resurrection of the Apollo Theater. And on a personal level he's the reason my father was appointed a Supreme Court Justice.

"Percy made it possible for tens of thousands of SUNY students to afford college through creating the Educational Opportunity Program, which should now be renamed in honor of Percy Ellis Sutton."

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