Spin Cycle

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Suffolk County Republicans unanimously adopted a new rule barring the party's candidates from seeking a second major party line in nonjudicial elections, but the rule may not be as ironclad as touted.

A 1997 state Supreme Court ruling threw out a similar party rule adopted by the Erie County Democratic Committee which declared that any Democratic candidates would "automatically forfeit" the party nomination if they took the Republican ballot line.

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The rule was aimed at former Buffalo Mayor Anthony Masiello for being too cozy with GOP Gov. George Pataki and taking Republican cross-endorsement.

The court held the rule was invalid and unenforceable because it was more restrictive than the state election law.

Steve Losquadro, attorney for the Sufolk GOP committee, said the new local party rule is "a statement of principle" but does not go as far as the Erie Democrats' rule by imposing an automatic action removing someone from the party ballot.