Highlights from Day 2 of Jones v. Blake included:
- A security guard employed at Blake’s mother’s Decatur Avenue residence testifying that he didn’t consider Blake a “resident” of his mother’s apartment because he only visited a 1-2 times a week. He acknowledged that Blake stayed overnight when he did.
- Blake’s pastor testifying that Blake attended church twice a month and visited his ailing Dad once a month during his time as a White House aide.
- Blake produced payment documents for fees paid to secure a sublet at his Washington Avenue condominium. Those payments were date 7/13/2013 and 7/17/2013.
- Blake testified that the subletting lease was effective 8/1/2013.
- Blake claimed that caring for his terminally ill Dad brought him to the Bronx a weekend or two a month, 2012-2013. His dad succumbed to cancer, 9/1/2013.
- Blake claimed to have shuttled between his places in DC, his parents’ separate residences in the Bronx, and eventually taking residence on Washington Avenue. Shuttling between
- Under cross-examination, Blake admitted to staying in a separate bed in his mom’s one-bedroom apartment.
- Under cross-examination. Blake cited his federal and private sector employment, from 12/2008 through 8/1/2014.
- Also, under cross, the plaintiff’s attorney Bob Harding asked why Blake (who ran Operation Vote for the Obama campaign) was flummoxed by the city BOE absentee ballot application process. The referee struck the question.
- Under redirect, Blake’s attorney Sarah Steiner tried to establish that Blake’s DC residence was of a transient nature. Blake testified (w/o offering proof) that Massachusetts’s Avenue apartment housed four different people over the years.
The hearing was adjourned after 90 minutes and will resume Thursday at 11 a.m. at the Bronx Board of Elections. Central BOE counsel Stephen A. Richman is expected to testify. The case should wrap up that afternoon with concluding statements and written arguments filed on Monday, August 11.
Michael Benjamin is a columnist and blogger as well as a former state legislator who represented the 79 AD, 2003-2010.