Not So Special Elections
Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in no hurry to call special elections to fill the 11 empty seats in the state legislature.
Speaking on the radio this morning, Mr. Cuomo panned the idea of filling the seats quickly. Notably, he said, with this week’s corruption conviction of then-Assemblyman Eric Stevenson, he didn’t know how many more seats would still open up.
Last night, the news broke that State Senator Eric Adams successfully contested his sole Democratic rival’s petitions, booting former Councilman John Gangemi off the ballot in this year’s Brooklyn borough president election.
This all but guarantees Mr. Adams a November victory in the heavily Democratic borough.
But who will replace Mr. Adams?
Councilman Donovan Richards will likely hire his one-time electoral rival Pesach Osina next week.
“It’s an interesting time, you know, sort of like Barack and Hillary,” Mr. Richards, the winner of an incredibly tight special election in southeast Queens last month, told Politicker on Friday. “We heal quick. You know, I think Pesach would certainly be a great addition to my team. He will help unite the community and he’ll be a great asset. Don’t be surprised if he’s hired next week.”
Donovan Richards declared victory today in the Queens special election to replace his mentor, former Councilman James Sanders, putting to rest fears that the election’s outcome would be unknown for weeks or even months in what had become a racially-charged contest.
With all absentee and affidavit votes counted, Mr. Richards padded his razor-thin 26-vote Election Day margin with another 133 votes, while his main competitor, Pesach Osina, only gathered an additional 80. This brought the unofficial tally to 2,646 for Mr. Richards and 2,567 for Mr. Osina, a wide enough margin to avoid an automatic recount. The results will be certified next week.
Flanked by a coterie of elected officials, Donovan Richards declared victory last night in a wide-open, eight-way Queens City Council special election. Seven miles south, Pesach Osina did the same exact thing.
With 97 percent of precincts reporting, Mr. Richards leads Mr. Osina by just 26 votes, easily making the 31st District race too close for observers to call. Vote counting ceased at midnight and will resume today, but at last glance, Mr. Richards had 2,513 votes to Mr. Osina’s 2,487. In addition to a potentially missing memory stick from a ballot scanner, absentee and paper ballots still need to be counted. A recount is also likely, but each candidate acted like the undisputed victors nevertheless.
“I’m calling on the community tonight to put aside their differences. Those who ran in this election, let’s not be bitter against each other,” Mr. Richards said at a bustling lounge in Laurelton, Queens.
One power broker in southeast Queens fears that the next City Council candidate to represent the 31st Council district will be a “young Jewish boy.”
In order to prevent Pesach Osina, an Orthodox Jewish former staffer to Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder, from winning the election, Bishop Charles Norris, founder of the Bethesda Missionary Baptist Church, is urging some of the eight other candidates to step aside. The seat in the majority black district was left open when James Sanders was elected to the State Senate and next week’s special election to replace him has attracted a crowded field.
“The black vote would be split among the six or seven candidates,” Mr. Norris told Politicker yesterday. “Since Jews vote in a bloc, as they usually do—and there’s nothing wrong with that—the young Jewish boy in the Rockaways would win.”
Former Councilman Larry Seabrook was convicted of corruption earlier today, and pursuant to the rules governing the City Council, he was instantly removed from office. Just moments ago, Mayor Michael Bloomerg declared the special election’s date to replace Mr. Seabrook will coincide with the 2012 general election on November 6th — but that doesn’t mean candidates aren’t already stepping up.
Andy King, a former labor organizer with 1199SEIU, told us he definitely plans to run in this upcoming special election. Mr. King performed strongly running against Mr. Seabrook in 2009, taking in over 30% of the vote to the incumbent’s 55%, which, combined with his connections to labor, may make him one of the frontrunners for the seat.
More than two months after the voters cast their ballots in the race to replace Carl Kruger in the State Senate has finally come to a close. The Republican candidate, David Storobin, has won.
“All the votes are in, disputed and otherwise. The count is fully over. David Storobin won by 16 votes,” Mr. Storobin’s campaign wrote on his Facebook page. ” The election will be officially certified on Tuesday at 1:30 pm, but there will be NO MORE counting. David Storobin is the new Senator!”
After a brutal campaign and an even more brutal process of counting the absentee ballots, fending off a fraud lawsuit, and an automatic hand recount, Republican candidate David Storobin looks like he’s finally set to become a state senator with a margin far narrower than what almost everybody literally predicted.
The Storobin campaign’s unofficial count has their candidate up 14 with 8 disputed ballots after the recount basically finished last night. They said even the numbers belonging to the Democratic contender, Lew Fidler, had Mr. Storobin up 11 votes, so even if every contested ballot favored Mr. Fidler (which is not happening), there is no path left that does not lead to a Storobin victory.
After a painfully elongated process, it seems the special election to replace corrupt State Senator Carl Kruger is almost over. The hand recount of the 20,000 ballots cast on March 20th should be finished in the next day or two and the Republican candidate, David Storobin, is close to securing a win with an extremely narrow margin.
According to multiple Republican tipsters, the unofficial tally has Mr. Storobin ahead by 24 votes, and unless something drastic happens that causes the counting of the final 25% or so of the ballots to shift towards his Democratic rival, Lew Fidler, Mr. Storobin could definitively declare victory before the month is over.