Rick Brand is a longtime Newsday reporter who writes about politics and government on Long Island.
Call them the dueling fundraisers.
John Jay LaValle, Suffolk Republican chairman, held a $250-a-head fundraiser at Villa Lombardi’s in Holbrook last Thursday night and drew about 350 party faithful, even though planned guest headliners could not make the event.
Brookhaven Town Supervisor Edward Romaine, meanwhile, held a $150 a head fete that started an hour earlier at Lombardi’s on the Bay in Patchogue and attracted 237 town GOP loyalists. A significant number traveled from one event to the other.
Party sources said Romaine, who officially announced his candidacy for re-election at his fundraiser, scheduled his event first.
However, LaValle had to use the same date because he expected to have Trump operative Tony Sayegh Jr. and Kimberly Guilfoyle, a Fox News legal analyst and host, and it was the only time both could schedule appearances.
LaValle said Sayegh had to cancel because he is becoming Trump’s assistant Treasury secretary for public affairs, and that Guilfoyle’s schedule changed because of the snowstorm last week. LaValle said he would bring Guilfoyle back at a later date.