Last fall we had town, city and county elections, and a congressional special upstate. We won the Congressional special (yay!), but Jon Corzine lost the NJ governorship to this guy, we lost ground in Nassau County, and Democratic county executive Andy Spano got whupped in Westchester.
And then Massachusetts happened, and I’m still kind of shocked that a popular sitting Democratic attorney general in Massachusetts lost to this guy. Seriously, what happened?
BUT! We can turn over a new page next Tuesday, when voters in LI, Queens, and Westchester will be electing four new assemblymembers:
- Queens (AD24) – Weprins! Former Assemblyman Mark Weprin moved over to the City Council, so his brother David, who was on the council and ran unsuccessfully for NYC Comptroller last year, is now running to replace Mark in the assembly. By the way, Mark and David’s father served in the seat before them, so that assembly seat has been in the Weprin family’s hands since 1971…which is kind of amazing. Weprin, a Democrat, is running against Bob Friedrich, who’s registered as a Democrat but running as a Republican. It looks like Friedrich may also be a marriage-equality flip-flopper – several sources say he said he was for it when he was running for city council, but it seems he switched positions in order to get the backing of the Conservative party.
- Westchester County (AD89) – I think this is the one to watch. County Legislator Peter Harckham is running to replace Democratic former Assemblyman Adam Bradley, who is now the new mayor of White Plains. I’ve met Harckham – he’s great. Fiscally responsible, reform-minded, and he’s all about results and getting things done. But the 89th district in northern Westchester is not a lock for Democrats. Democrats took some punishment in the 2009 elections in Westchester, but Harckham’s independence ought to help him out. His commitment to dealing with local issues in a realistic and straightforward way instead of resorting to easy demagoguery has earned him the region’s key newspaper endorsement. Turnout is key here. If you have free time on Tuesday and you’re from Westchester, go home and help out!
- Suffolk County (AD3) – Assemblywoman Patricia Eddington resigned her seat to run for local office in Brookhaven, and Eddington staffer Lauren Thoden (warning – video and audio may automatically play when you open the page) is running to replace her. Republican Dean Murray is her opponent. David Singer calls this one a “jump-ball”.
- Nassau County (AD15) – takeover opportunity? – the Republican incumbent here resigned to take a job in the administration of new Nassau County Exec Ed Mangano, who shocked everybody by beating Tom Suozzi. Local civic activist and repair shop owner Matt Meng is the Democrat running here, but Republican Mike Montesano has an edge because of the GOP’s registration advantage in this district.
Next Tuesday may be seen as a test of Democratic strength ahead of the 2010 general election campaign. And given that whoever holds the state senate after the dust settles in the 2010 general will essentially control congressional redistricting…the 2010 elections are going to be huge.