Green Party candidate drops out of Nassau exec race
Phillipp Negron's candidacy for Nassau County executive on the Green Party line lasted less than three weeks.
Negron, 25, of Freeport, withdrew from the race Friday, after two days of testimony in Nassau Supreme Court in which Democratic attorneys questioned the validity of several signatures on his nominating petitions. Negron needed the signature of 60 Green Party members."Based on an examination of the signatures and testimony, we determined that we did not have enough valid signatures," said Negron's attorney, Steve Leventhal.
In court Friday, six of the seven notaries who collected petitions for Negron -- including Brian Nevin, spokesman for GOP County Executive Edward Mangano, and other Nassau employees -- did not respond to subpoenas to testify.
Critics argue Negron, whose stepfather is Timothy Williams, chairman of the Nassau Industrial Development Agency, was in the race to draw votes away from the Democratic nominee. Mangano's predecessor, Thomas Suozzi, and businessman Adam Haber will compete in the Sept. 10 Democratic primary.
Democratic Party chairman Jay Jacobs said he would file a criminal complaint with District Attorney Kathleen Rice's office over the petitions. "This was part of a conspiracy to take over the Green Party line and siphon votes from Tom Suozzi and help Ed Mangano win an election," Jacobs said.
Nevin accused Democrats of engaging in "dirty politics at its worst" and attempting to "disenfranchise voters." Nevin declined to comment about his own subpoena or his role in collecting signatures for Negron.
Negron testified Friday that he was hired by Nassau's Department of Public Works less than a week before announcing his candidacy, but said he was not recruited to run by administration officials. Negron said he did meet with Nevin at a diner in Freeport to sign documents related to his candidacy.
With Ann Givens