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Call it the political version of Mad Magazine’s Spy vs. Spy.
Suffolk Democrats thought they had pulled a fast one earlier this week with the surprise move to have veteran Legis. Wayne Horsley decline renomination by mail Monday so that Republicans would be locked into running William Barci, a little known OTB worker, for the 14th District seat. Horsley is becoming state parks regional director.
But high-level political sources say local Republicans are looking to gain the upper hand by having Barci become the GOP candidate for Babylon Town clerk. The original Republican candidate declined the nomination by Monday’s deadline.
In their effort to install Barci as a candidate, Republicans want to use a provision in state law applying to cases where the original candidate dies or moves out of state — or as is the case here, the candidate ends up seeking another elected office after the last day to decline a nomination.
Sources say Republicans are looking to run Kevin McCaffrey, a veteran Lindenhurst village trustee and deputy mayor, for Horsley’s seat. Republicans say they are hopeful that McCaffrey, a Teamsters union official, will get the backing of the Conservative Party, which had endorsed Horsley.
Elections officials say no party has yet filed paperwork for replacement candidates. Democrats say they plan to run Thomas Dolan, son of the late former town Democratic chairman Frank Dolan, who is also getting the Independence Party line. Replacements must be filed by week’s end.