With a week until the primary, Democratic Nassau County executive candidate Laura Curran has rolled out her highest-profile endorsement: Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo.
Curran, a county legislator from Baldwin, announced the two-term Democratic governor’s backing in a statement to Newsday. In it, Cuomo alluded to Curran’s proposals, if elected, to reform the county’s contracting and hiring practices in light of recent corruption scandals.
“I trust that Laura Curran will enact the hard but critical reforms needed to give taxpayers the honest government they deserve,” Cuomo said.
Curran called Cuomo a “champion for Long Island families” whose “approach I will emulate as county executive.”
Voters will go to the polls on Sept. 12 to choose between Curran and County Comptroller George Maragos, who left the Republican Party last fall.
County Executive Edward Mangano, a Republican, is not seeking re-election as he fights federal corruption charges. Cuomo, who has been close with Mangano, did not mention the incumbent in his statement endorsing Curran.
The winner of the Democratic primary will face former state Sen. Jack Martins in the general election. Green Party member Cassandra Lems is also on the ballot.
In 2013, Cuomo did not endorse in the Democratic primary between former County Executive Thomas Suozzi, now a congressman, and businessman Adam Haber. The governor made a last-minute, non-specific endorsement of Suozzi in the general election, which Mangano won easily.
Curran has received endorsements from nearly every prominent county, state and federal elected official who represents Nassau, but Maragos has tried to use the endorsements of his opponent in his favor.
He argues that the officials’ backing of Curran show he isn’t part of the political establishment. “Basically you define insiders based on who the establishment supports,” Maragos said. “So she’s the handpicked one.”