Rival Politicians March in Bronx Parade

State Sen. Gustavo Rivera at the Bronx Puerto Rican Day Parade (Photo by Marisol Diaz via The Riverdale Press)

State Sen. Gustavo Rivera at the Bronx Puerto Rican Day Parade (Photo by Marisol Diaz via The Riverdale Press)

As the Bronx’s own Puerto Rican Day Parade played out on the Grand Concourse June 1, dueling politicians strutted their stuff for the welcoming crowd, Shant Shahrigian of The Riverdale Press reports.

Only a few days before the parade, Councilman Fernando Cabrera had formally announced his intention to challenge state Sen. Gustavo Rivera for his seat in the September Democratic primary. Rivera seemed unfazed by the presence of a rival.

“Che vive Puerto Rico!” — Puerto Rico lives! — Mr. Rivera, a native of the territory, shouted to applause.

After a group of women told him he looked like the governor of Puerto Rico, Mr. Rivera took off his brimmed hat to reveal what he said was a marked difference with the island politician — the senator’s shaved head. The gesture drew loud laughter and claps from the women, although some of them said the governor recently shaved his head, too.

Both men seemed to have supporters in the crowd. Cabrera, of mixed Dominican and Puerto Rican heritage, was greeted by one bystander who called out: “You the man!”

Rep. Charles Rangel was also in attendance, although his challenger, state Sen. Adriano Espaillat, was meeting supporters in Puerto Rico and sent a truck with election posters to the parade. For more on the event, in its 30th year, go to the original article.

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