You won’t find Albasse Soumahoro at the polls today.
“I know it’s our duty to vote,” said the 40-year-old Harlem resident, “but politicians’ duty is to keep promises, and they don’t.”
Soumahoro, an out-of-work accountant, was one of many New Yorkers who said they were disillusioned enough by “politics as usual” to skip voting altogether. They said persistent joblessness is their chief complaint against incumbents and argued that challengers aren’t any more capable of reviving the economy.
“I’m very much anti-politics. It’s just not a game I want to play,” said Eric Longo, 41, of Long Island.
Longo said he’s disappointed in candidates’ approach to gay rights.
“It comes and it goes. Rights are given to us then they’re taken away. It’s a political issue and then it’s not,” said the self-employed designer.
Those planning to vote were hopeful that Democrats would tackle the economy and other issues but worried that the party would lose its majority in Congress.
“They’re trying to push my boy out of office,” said Jonathan Purdie, 47, of President Barack Obama. “It’s a power domino effect.”
The parcel bomb scare on U.S.-bound flights last week potentially could boost Republicans, who make homeland security a priority, said Purdie, of Manhattan.
But Henry Singleton, 52, a union organizer who spent Election Day eve urging others to vote, said the GOP threat is overplayed. Tea Party-boosted Republicans are too extreme for most voters and won’t be voted into office, he said. But that doesn’t mean the Democrats don’t have a lot of work to do, the Harlem resident said.
“Andrew Cuomo will be elected, and the pressure of [creating] jobs in New York State will be on Cuomo,” Singleton said. “The people of New York will hold him to a higher standard.”