By Long Islander News
As Thomas Suozzi watched the election results pour in Tuesday night, his early lead was tinged with doubt as one of American history’s greatest political upsets was unfolding.
“When I saw the whole country turning out differently than people expected, we weren't sure that I was going to win,” Suozzi said, alluding to the presidential race, which was won by Republican Donald Trump.
However, Suozzi’s strong showing in Queens and modest gains in Nassau were enough to push him to victory against state Sen. Jack Martins (R-Mineola). He gained 48.5 percent of the vote, while Martins landed 44 percent, according to the New York State Board of Elections.
“I’m very excited about the election victory for our campaign. But, I recognize there are some very serious problems that we face in the country,” Suozzi said.
The former Nassau County executive said he would support President-elect Donald Trump and is eager to hear what some commentators have called an elusive agenda.
And, Suozzi emphasized he would not tolerate anything he feels to be “discriminatory or is some sort of shenanigans that would result in injustices for people.”
Suozzi added that, next week, he will visit Washington, D.C. for an orientation on his new position. He’ll spend the next two months before his term begins contemplating how to “actually work together,” he said. The race has brought to light the fact, he said, that many citizens are frustrated and discouraged by what is perceived to be an ineffectual government.
“Of course it would be better if I were a part of the majority. It would be better for me if the president was somebody from my party. But I’ve never been about just the party. I’m happy to work with republicans,” Suozzi said. “If I can find people of good will and they want to actually solve problems, I’ll talk to them and figure out how we can find some common ground to get things done.”
State Senate District 2
Meanwhile, State Senate Majority John Flanagan (R-East Northport) kept his seat in the 2nd State Senate District with ease, securing 58.3 percent of the vote. Democrat Peter Magistrale brought in 29.8 percent of the vote, with Libertarian Stephen Ruth snagging 3.6 percent.
Flanagan stated, “Tonight, we have grown our majority in the New York State Senate. With it, hardworking New York taxpayers and their families have chosen geographical and ideological balance, and the accountability that comes with a state government made up of both Democrats and Republicans.”
He added that he will work to implement an “economic security agenda” to make it easier to live and work in New York, adding the “meaningful ethics reform” must be past to rebuild public trust in government.
“We must meet the challenges that exist with solutions that work - - not for some taxpayers or for some businesses - - but for anyone who wants to make it in the state of New York. We need to continue to reduce taxes across the board to improve our economic climate and to stimulate real and sustained growth,” Flanagan said.
State Senate District 5
Republican incumbent Carl Marcellino (R-Oyster Bay) defeated Democrat Jim Gaughran to maintain his seat in the 5th State Senate District.
Marcellino earned 68,880 votes (46.73 percent), besting Gaughran’s 66,455 (45.08 percent), according to results from the state BOE.
The senator thanked the district for re-electing him in a statement emailed Wednesday.
“I am honored and humbled that they have again placed their trust in me,” he stated. “Thank you to everyone who helped during the campaign. I am honored by all that you did, the phone calls you made, the walking door to door but mostly for your encouragement.
“I am privileged to serve the people of the 5th Senate District and I thank you for your continued support and confidence.”
State Assembly District 10
As for the 10th State Assembly District, incumbent Assem. Chad Lupinacci (R-South Huntington) took it home with 53.4 percent of the vote against Democrat Edwin Perez’s 38.3 percent.
“‘I would like to express my humble and heartfelt thanks to the residents of the 10th District for choosing me to, once again, represent their interests in the New York State Assembly. It is truly an honor to have earned your trust,” Lupinacci stated.
He called it a “privilege” to serve the constituents for the past four years.
“Now, we must set our sights on big goals and solutions to the issues at hand, so we may address them in the upcoming legislative sessions,” he stated. “Through continued cooperation with my colleagues, on both sides of the political aisle, I will remain diligent in effort and deliberate in action for every resident of Long Island and New York State.”
State Assembly District 12
Incumbent Assem. Andrew Raia (R-East Northport) was re-elected to his seat in the 12th State Assembly District.
Raia earned 59.41 percent of the vote, besting Democrat Spencer Rumsey, who earned 31.59 percent.
Raia said Wednesday that he is “gratified that the voters looked at my record and felt I should be returned. With every campaign, no matter who’s running against me, I work as hard as I can and leave nothing on the table.”
Raia said he will continue to take on projects such as cleaning up corruption within government and improve groundwater within the district.
“We’re already in the process of drafting legislation to further clean up the corruption in Albany,” Raia said. “Banning the use of campaign funds to pay for criminal defense is at the top of the list.”He added that the assembly has already begun looking at additional ways to “perfect our ground water, including the water that we drink and our marine waterways. That will continue to be my focus.”