Maggi Peyton Wake - Friday, Oct. 28

PHOTO CAPTION: Maggi Peyton (left) in 1976 with Mim Kelber, Bella Abzug and Harold Holzer. Photograph by Diana Mara Henry.


Maggi Peyton, a founder of Community Free Democrats and the Park West Village Tenants Association (along with Jerry Nadler), and a feminist who had the political eye of a mother hawk and the stamina and heart of a dancer, passed away Tuesday night. Our club honored her at our annual gala in April. Our hearts go out to her sons Randy and Sean and to all of those who knew her. It was an honor and a joy to know her.

Her wake will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. tomorrow, Friday, Oct. 28, at Frank E. Campbell Funeral Home, NW corner of 81st and Madison. Please spread the word.

It's almost frightening that we will have to carry on without her. Maggi preferred to remain humbly behind the scenes, but those in the know knew you had to get to Maggi, to talk it over with her, to find out who to connect with to reach your political or governmental goals, or just to vent and bellyache. An activist and leader who also knew the value of patience, she was the quintessentially calm repository of relationships among grassroots community people and powerbrokers alike, here on the Upper West Side and throughout Manhattan. A ballet dancer by training with a remarkable understanding of people, she became a trusted aide to Congresswoman Bella Abzug and later worked for four Borough Presidents - Andrew Stein, C. Virginia Fields, Scott Stringer and Gale Brewer. She also was a founder of Women's Political Caucus and the Bella Abzug Leadership Institute (with Bella's daughter Liz). Maggi handled valuable bits of inside information like an air traffic controller, guaranteeing that each piece would be directed to the proper runway and arrive safely at its useful destination. She shared what she knew if you could be trusted with it, and you could always trust her. So very many secrets have been snuffed out with Maggi's passing.

Scott Stringer has said time and again, "Maggi didn't work for me. I worked for Maggi."  We know that Maggi worked for all of us, and it worked.

Acclaimed Lincoln historian Harold Holzer, a close friend of Maggi's, wrote this article in the Oct. 27th City and State:

Last Chance to Register to Vote on Nov. 8; in 2017 City-Wide Primaries, Too!

Binge-watching CNN’s clash of wonks and screaming partisans does not suffice this season. This is one big game you don’t want to watch from the sidelines.

Two important voter registration deadlines fall this week, and the NYC Board of Elections will host in-person voter registration drives at four locations on the Upper West Side.

Want to vote for US President and other federal, state and local offices up for grabs in the General Election on Tuesday, November 8, 2016? IF YOU AREN’T YET REGISTERED TO VOTE, YOU MUST DO SO THIS WEEK.

And a lesser known fact: Do you want to be eligible to vote in the 2017 city-wide Primary Elections for Mayor, Comptroller, Public Advocate, City Council, et al.? This week is also the deadline for you to DECLARE OR CHANGE YOUR PARTY AFFILIATION so that you can vote in the party primary of your choice. Yes, although those elections will be held in September, 2017, you won’t have a voice in some hotly contested local races UNLESS YOU DESIGNATE A PARTY AFFILIATION THIS WEEK!

On Thursday, Oct. 13 from 3 to 8 p.m., and on Saturday, Oct. 15 from 1 to 9 p.m., you can register at

LaGuardia High School, 100 Amsterdam Ave.

PS 53/811, 466 West End Ave.

Frank McCourt HS, 151 West. 84th St.

West Side High School, 140 W. 102 St.

A full list of “Voter Registration Sites” throughout the city is available on the BOE web site at You’ll find it listed on the menu to the left.

You can also register to vote or change your party enrollment the old-fashioned way, in person at a Board of Elections office (deadline, Friday, Oct. 14) or by snail mail (postmark deadline, also Oct. 14). To get deadline details, locations, forms to fill out, or to register online if you have a valid NYS Dept. of Motor Vehicles ID, see the “For Voters” tab on the BOE web site.

 The site will also guide you in applying for an absentee ballot.

Calling on Mayor de Blasio

The below letter was sent to Mayor de Blasio regarding the recent City Council bill to raise City Council salaries above the recommendations of the Quadrennial Advisory Commission.

Dear Mayor de Blasio,

The Board of Directors of Community Free Democrats has adopted a resolution calling upon you to veto Int. 1055-2016 in its present form.

We object to this legislation because the City Council elected to grant themselves a pay increase that exceeds the recommendations of the Quadrennial Advisory Commission. Furthermore, signing this legislation would mean that the City Council and Mayor would have increased their own pay during your current term in office (and even retroactively), damaging the public’s faith in honest government and increasing cynicism in the political process as a whole.

We believe that our elected officials should be fairly compensated. Nonetheless, we urge that you only consider approving pay raises for the Mayor and City Council that take effect following the term in which the increase was adopted, and that are in accordance with the recommendations of the Quadrennial Advisory Commission.

Stephanie Lasher
President, Community Free Democrats

Councilmember Helen Rosenthal
Councilmember Mark Levine