Tuesday’s election is a significant one.
OK, so maybe every election is significant but, this time around, local elections could signal which way Long Island wants to go when it comes to the issue of government corruption.
Long Islanders for the past few years have been buffeted by allegations, indictments — and some convictions — arising out of government-related corruption in both counties and too many towns.
Prosecutors and judges, on the state and federal level, have had at it thus far. But beginning at 6 a.m. when polls open this Election Day, residents can join in as well.
On Tuesday, the offices of Nassau county executive, Suffolk district attorney, and Oyster Bay town supervisor are up for grabs because current or former office holders are fighting corruption charges.
In Nassau, County Executive Edward Mangano decided against going for a third term. In Oyster Bay, former Supervisor John Venditto resigned. And Suffolk District Attorney Thomas Spota announced his intention to resign — after deciding against seeking another term.
All have pleaded not guilty.
It’s rare to have so many top spots cleared of incumbents, or for that matter — and especially for Suffolk district attorney — clear of incumbents cross-endorsed by multiple major political parties.
The result, for voters, is the rare free-for-all.
Even so, that accounts for just three out of a total 155 Long Island races, where every county legislative seat and several judicial and town supervisor posts also are up.
And there’s more.
Should New York hold a constitutional convention?
Should the state constitution be amended to allow New York judges to, beginning in 2018, revoke or reduce state pensions for state officials convicted of felonies related to their official duties?
Voters on Long Island and statewide will determine both of those questions, too.
Will what’s going on in the national political arena impact local contests? Political prognosticators say no. More important, they said, will be factors such as weather and the success of local get-out-the-vote efforts.
There are 306 candidates on local ballots, which may seem like a lot. Still, that number pales against the number of registered voters on Long Island.
How many will come out? Will turnout — this time around — end up being higher than the usual, miserably low Long Island numbers for off-year elections without a presidential or governor’s race?
That, as always, prospective voters, depends on you.
P.S. Polls close at 9 p.m.