Now What? A Presidential To-Do List

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We asked people in Brooklyn what they’d like a new president to do first. Here’s what they said

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Adam Coretz, 27, works in digital media and was interviewed in DUMBO. He’s voting for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: NATIONAL UNITY

“She needs to make an effort to reach out to the people who feel left behind. That ‘deplorables’ comment was unfortunate, and there are many people who distrust the government. She will be their president, too, so she needs to make an effort not to cast them aside.”

—Majlie de Puy Kamp

 

 

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Jason Easter, 32, is a paramedic at FDNY’s Emergency Medical Service who was interviewed at Brooklyn Bridge Park. He is voting for Donald Trump.

Priority: TAXES

“The first thing that the next president should do is probably to lower tax rates for middle-income people — those who make between $30,000 and $80,000 a year. The tax rate went up — particularly in 2013-2014 — from basically 18 to 25 percent for people who made over $50,000 a year. That increases the burden over the years. It sucks when you are trying to make ends meet, trying to put food on the table and trying to pay rent.”

—Jessie Shi

 

 

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Anita Teekasingh, 46, is a resident of Queens who works as a nanny in Park Slope. She immigrated to the U.S. from Guyana in 1987 and was interviewed in Gowanus. Teekasingh is voting for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: HEALTHCARE

“I want them to change this medical health insurance thing where if you don’t have any insurance, you have to pay the fee. Some people can’t afford health insurance and then they take that fee. That’s a lot of money.”

—Sushmita Pathak

 

 

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Alec Zisi, 22, is a student at Northwestern University who was interviewed in Cobble Hill. He is voting for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: ENVIRONMENT

“The first thing she should do is address the environment, which is what Bernie was going to do until he dropped out. The thing is, I am ‘Team Not Trump,’ not ‘Team Hillary.’ There is a big difference.”

—Igor Bosilkovski

 

 

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Carol Saft, 55, is a documentarian and artist who was interviewed in Greenpoint. She is a Democrat and is voting for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: STUDENT DEBT 

“I would like to have the president’s support in the elimination of student debt, through various proposals that have been discussed quite a bit. And the next thing would be to take money out of politics, like the Citizens United case.”

—Patrick Martin

 

 

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Johannah Bogart, 26, is a teacher who was interviewed in Williamsburg. She is voting for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: EDUCATION

“I want Hillary to overhaul the history curriculum in the USA to include our foreign relations over the past hundred years.”

—Rebecca Scott

 

 

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Luis, second from right, and Emily, right

Emily, 33, asked that we not use her last name. She is from London, works in advertising, and was interviewed in Fort Greene.

Priority: CRIMINAL JUSTICE

“Make the police stop shooting people.”

Luis, 57, also asked that we not use his last name. Luis is from Mexico and lives in Miami. He works in advertising and was interviewed in Fort Greene. He supports Hillary Clinton.

Priority: UNITY

“Unite us. It’s called the United States for a reason.”

—Maxwell Hauptman
 

 

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Brett Bechthold is a floor supervisor at Brooklyn Industries who was interviewed in Park Slope. Bechthold is an independent and is voting for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: INFRASTRUCTURE

“The president should update national infrastructure — bridges, interstates. I think that FDR did it right — he built jobs, gave people jobs. More often than not, those projects are going to take awhile, so it would give people a chance to work in a new industry.”

—Jill Bosserman

 

 

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Jon Chonko, 31, is a digital designer who was interviewed in Crown Heights. He is a registered Democrat, and is voting for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: HEALTHCARE COSTS

 “I think we need a roadmap solution for the rising premiums. I just changed insurance and the new plan covers less and the doctor network is smaller, but the costs are higher. It’s a big problem for the whole country.”

—Manuel Villa Rodriguez

  

 

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Leroy Jackson, 58, is the owner of the Red Hook Garden Center and was interviewed in Red Hook. Jackson is a former Bernie supporter, but plans to vote for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: HEALTHCARE

“People need healthcare but don’t throw out the baby with the bathwater. Fix Obamacare don’t get rid of it. Every time you tweak something, you’re making the country more perfect.”

—Kate Cough

 

 

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Steve Whipple, 23, works in a machine shop and was interviewed in DUMBO. He is voting for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: GUNS

“The president should keep guns out of the hands of people who shouldn’t have guns. They don’t have to disappear completely, but we need better background checks. That should be the first thing on the new president’s to-do list.”

—Majlie de Puy Kamp

 

 

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Richard Ramos, left

Richard Ramos, 45, is a stagehand who was interviewed in Red Hook. He is voting for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: EDUCATION

“It’s like the country is stuck in ninth grade. How has the most powerful country on earth not even graduated yet?”

—Kate Cough

 

 

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Country Parker, 54, is an electrician who is currently unemployed and was interviewed in Crown Heights. Parker is an independent, but is voting for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: JOBS

“I’m not a developer, so I don’t know how, but [the president needs to create] more jobs. I don’t have a job. I had a couple of strokes last year — one on my birthday and one in the summer — so I’m on disability. But they give me a hard time. We need a better system to determine who is eligible for disability. I’m hungry.”

—Manuel Villa Rodriguez

 

 

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Linda Drummond, 50, is the owner of Pinot’s Palette, a wine-and-painting business in Park Slope. She lives on Staten Island and was interviewed in Park Slope. Drummond is a Republican and is voting for Donald Trump.

Priority: OBAMACARE

“The president should get rid of Obamacare. It’s not a good program. It’s very expensive. I would not take it, even if I had the option. I don’t think the government should control our healthcare. It could dictate what doctor I could use. I’ve been going to the same doctor for many years, and it could make me lose my doctor.”

—Jill Bosserman

  

 

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Brett Somers, 40, is a restaurant server. He lives in Bedford-Stuyvesant. Somers is a Democrat and plans to vote for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: IMMIGRATION REFORM

“The next president should restore faith that foreign people will be welcomed into this country and will be treated equally in particular, Mexicans. They have been assaulted in recent political conversations. We should restore faith that they are part of the country and that they will be welcomed to become citizens in the future. Trump’s wall is aggravating the problem. Trump has been creating fears of foreigners.”

—Jessie Shi

 

 

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Thomas Soldinger, 65, is a superintendent. He was interviewed in Greenpoint. Soldinger is a Libertarian.

Priority: FOREIGN POLICY

“Get us out of the Middle East and keep us out of the Middle East. Those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones. We’re no better than anybody else in the world, and we should mind our own business.”

—Patrick Martin

 

 

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Guy Nattiv, 40, is a filmmaker who was interviewed in Williamsburg. He is a Democract and is voting for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: THE MIDDLE EAST

“I’m from Israel, so I think it’s important for Hillary to take control in the Middle East because Obama doesn’t know what he’s doing over there.”

—Rebecca Scott

 

 

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Denice Lee, 50, immigrated to the U.S. 10 years ago from Malaysia and works as a nanny. She was interviewed in Gowanus. Lee hasn’t yet decided which candidate she supports, and wishes there were a third choice.

Priority: EQUAL PAY

“Equal pay for women. I think females are really dedicated to their jobs. They deserve equal pay, if not more. I have worked with male colleagues, and they are always MIA.”

—Sushmita Pathak

 

 

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Rebecca Pustizzi, 33, is a digital producer who was interviewed in Cobble Hill. She is voting for Hillary Clinton.

Priority: FIX THE POLITICAL CLIMATE

“Hillary. Because I support the democratic values in general — same-sex marriage, women’s right to choose. I’m on the side of the scientists when it comes to climate change. The first thing she needs to do once she takes office is fix the current political climate.”

— Igor Bosilkovski

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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