Spin Cycle

News, views and commentary on Long Island, state and national politics.

Call it “Donkey-Con.”

State Assembly candidate Dean Hart plans to show up at the Nassau County Democratic Party’s nominating convention at the Cradle of Aviation in Garden City Wednesday night with a live donkey — the symbol of the Democratic Party.

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A Glen Head optometrist who ran unsuccessfully for Nassau County Legislature in 2015, Hart will be nominated by the Democrats to run against Assemb. Michael Montesano (R-Glen Head) in the 15th Assembly District.

Hart wants to emulate the 1936 Democratic presidential convention in Philadelphia when then-President Franklin D. Roosevelt, nominated for the second of what would be four terms, appeared with a donkey.

“We have to get back to our roots,” said Hart. “Let’s start focusing on the middle class people and everyday people.”

Hart said he got the donkey, a 6-year-old female named Hope, from a local petting zoo.

Hart originally planned to bring the animal into the museum, which honors Long Island’s aviation roots, but was denied entrance by Cradle of Aviation officials. Instead, the donkey will remain just outside with a handler, welcoming guests.

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Democratic Party chairman Jay Jacobs said he was unaware of the planned stunt.

Hart, a radio host who founded Long Island Citizens for Good Government, has taken on a showman’s persona.

During his legislative campaign, Hart gave plastic handcuffs to commuters at train stations to draw attention to public corruption, and showed up at a GOP golf fundraiser to protest pay-to-play practices.