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Eric Adams

Jenifer Rajkumar Isn’t Giving Up on Eric Adams

Despite the mayor's sinking approval ratings and the specter of a federal corruption probe, one of his staunchest allies is sticking by his side.

12:25 PM EST on January 10, 2024

Mayor Eric Adams joins Chancellor David Banks and Assemblymember Jenifer Rajkumar to celebrate Diwali becoming a public-school holiday. (Ed Reed / Mayoral Photography Office)

During Eric Adams's tenure as mayor, one person has regularly been seen at his side—Queens Assemblymember Jenifer Rajkumar, who has been one of Adams's staunchest allies in the state legislature and a fixture at his public appearances, big and small. 

City & State wrote about their political alliance last summer, noting that in hitching her rise to that of Adams, Rajkumar was "demonstrating proximity to power at every single opportunity," with the end goal of "eventually achiev[ing] that level of power." 

And while Adams's star has notably dimmed in recent months (a federal corruption probe and widespread dissatisfaction with how you're handling City governance will do that to you!), Rajkumar hasn't given up on her friend (or, according to Politico, her desire to run for City office in 2025). At the end of December, Rajkumar introduced a bill, the SMOKEOUT Act, to allow local law enforcement to crack down on unlicensed weed shops—a key priority of Adams. A few days into 2024, Rajkumar appeared alongside the mayor at a composting-related press conference in Staten Island. (Just to reiterate, Rajkumar represents a district in Queens.) And on Tuesday, the legislator was again by the mayor's side during Governor Kathy Hochul's State of the State address in Albany. 

And on Wednesday evening, Eric Adams will be the featured guest at a $3,000/head reelection campaign fundraiser for Rajkumar, which is billed as a "star-studded night with Broadway singers." 

While the flier doesn't note which Broadway singers will be in attendance, it does list the host committee, which notably includes Eric Adams's good pal and luxury real estate agent Eleonora Srugo; REBNY's James Whelan; and Anthony Carone, the brother of Adams's former chief of staff, Frank Carone, who is now the CEO of Frank's lobbying firm Oaktree Solutions. (Kathy Wylde and former Governor David Paterson are helping Rajkumar wrangle donors too.) 

If any Hell Gate reader happens to attend what we anticipate to be a scintillating evening and has some intel to pass on, reach us at tips@hellgatenyc.com

We're sharing a snippet of Rajkumar's entry in the Eric Adams Table of Success below (you can read her full entry here). And to read more about other people in the mayor's orbit, browse the whole Table of Success.


The job of a New York state assemblymember is fairly straightforward: For six months, you're in session, duking it out in Albany and trying to make New York's busted-up political system grind forward. The other half of the year? Well, beyond plotting revenge against your political enemies to deploy during the next session, or running for reelection during an even-numbered year, you're pretty much left to your own devices, and you can choose what to do with your time. 

In the back half of 2023, what southeast Queens Assemblymember Jenifer Rajkumar chose to do was hang out with Eric Adams, a lot. From a press conference about an opioid settlement, to a celebration of Haitian heritage at Gracie Mansion, to a Dominican pride event, Rajkumar appeared at public events with the mayor addressing topics that had nothing to do with her district, noticeably breaking from the pack of other state legislators who usually only crowd around the mayor when something is impacting their district or is about legislation they're working on. 

"The highest compliment I have gotten from Eric Adams is that I am a beast," Rajkumar told City & State in August, referring to her very visible public schedule with the mayor, with whom she shares a birthday, 22 years apart. 

Earlier that same month, at a flag raising for India, Rajkumar expounded on her admiration for Adams. "When we look at Mayor Adams, we see ourselves. In fact, they actually call him the Indian Mayor," she said. "And Mayor Eric Adams and I share a belief in unlocking the power of New York’s most forgotten and bringing people from all corners of our city to the table of power, because we believe in the power of people's voices, that they count. That is why he"s the GOAT, the greatest of all time."

Read the rest of Rajkumar's entry in the Table of Success here.

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