Rick Brand Portrait of Newsday reporter Rick Brand taken on

Rick Brand is a longtime Newsday reporter who writes about politics and government on Long Island.

It was a predawn political Kodak moment.

In a nearly empty ballroom at GOP election-night headquarters, Suffolk Legis. Dan Losquadro (R-Shoreham) snapped a cell-phone photo at about 1:20 a.m. - moments after the giant wall screen showed he had taken a one-vote lead over Assemb. Marc Alessi (D-Shoreham) with 97 of 98 election districts reporting.

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"Now when I go to middle schools, I can really tell them that every single vote counts," said the Shoreham Republican. Later, when the last election district came in, Losquadro's edge grew to 40 votes. By Friday, his lead was reported at about 800 as electronic tabulations were read.

- Rick Brand