BREAKING: City BOE wins appeal knocking Andy King off this year’s City Council ballot

Former City Councilmember Andy King’s attempt to return to the City Council faced a major defeat Wednesday.
Photo NYC Council/John McCarten

Former Bronx City Councilmember Andy King’s attempt to get back into politics hit a major roadblock Wednesday, after an appeal by the city’s Board of Elections (BOE) to knock him off the ballot was successful.

The ruling by an appellate court reversed a decision last week by a New York Supreme Court judge to allow King — a Democrat who held the District 12 northeast Bronx seat before his 2020 expulsion from the council — to seek his old seat this year, despite his removal from the ballot by the BOE last month.

Members of the council face term limits after serving two consecutive terms, leaving many to believe that since King, 61, had already served two successive terms, he could not seek a third one.

But Judge Lucy Billings, in her May 4 ruling, asserted that King’s expulsion in 2020 prevented him from serving out all four years of his second term. Additionally, Billings noted the action taken by the City Council against King, in the form of an expulsion, doesn’t carry the same weight as a removal from office.

The Supreme Court’s Appellate Division disagreed.

The appellate court felt that the BOE properly interpreted the act of removal from office “to include a council member who is expelled by vote of the council.” The appellate decision said that the Supreme Court should have denied King’s petition.

“Given that there is no process formally referred to as ‘removal’ of a council member, and no senior official has the ability to dismiss a member from office, King’s interpretation would effectively read his term out of the charter,” the appellate court’s decision reads. “Therefore, Supreme Court should have denied the petition to validate.”

Per the decision by the  appellate court, the earliest King can run for office is 2025. The Bronx Times reached out to King for comment and is awaiting a response.

King was the first sitting councilmember to be expelled from the City Council by his colleagues — in a 48-2 vote — on the basis of four charges including harassment, discrimination and conflicts of interest.

A slew of ethical violations marred King’s tenure in office dating back to 2012, when a former staffer accused King of firing her after refusing his alleged sexual advances, and multiple instances of King misusing campaign funds for personal use.

The council’s Ethics Committee had begun investigating King in early 2017, alleging that he “engaged in gender-based harassment” regarding a photo accidentally posted to his Twitter account by a staffer that was intended for their personal account in June 2015.

King first won the District 12 seat in a 2012 special election. His was elected to his first full term in 2013, and then secured reelection in 2017.

Andy King can run for his old seat, judge rules. But voters, Bronx Dems may not be so forgiving.


With King now off the ballot, the District 12 primary is paved for incumbent Kevin Riley, who won a 2020 special election following King’s ouster that year. Riley is being challenged by a perennial candidate in Pamela Hamilton-Johnson and political unknown in Aisha Ahmed.

The primary is scheduled for June 27.

Reach Robbie Sequeira at [email protected] or (718) 260-4599. For more coverage, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram @bronxtimes