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Suozzi says farewell with party and 22-minute video

Nassau County Executive Thomas Suozzi speaks at the

Nassau County Executive Thomas Suozzi speaks at the Garden City Hotel on Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2009 in Garden City. Credit: Howard Schnapp

Ever the showman, Nassau County Executive Thomas Suozzi staged his own swan song for 460 backers Wednesday where the centerpiece was a 22-minute video touting his eight years in office.

When the video ended, Suozzi joked, “If I had shown the video before the election, I might have gotten 336 more votes,” referring to his losing margin to Republican County

Executive-elect Edward Mangano of Bethpage. The video tribute cited Suozzi for reining in the county’s deficit, leading the fight to cap Medicaid costs, restoring Nassau’s historic courthouse, and introducing ideas like “New Suburbia,” “Fix Albany” and “Cool Downtowns.”

>>VIDEO: Click here to see Suozzi's speech

There was no mention of the final campaign, in which Suozzi lost despite reporting late last month a remaining balance in his campaign warchest of more than $2 million. 

>> PHOTOS: Thomas Suozzi through the years

The crowd, which paid $50 a head, watched the video on two giant screens and gave Suozzi a half dozen standing ovations during lunch in the Garden City Hotel’s gilded ballroom. Also produced, was a 168-page booklet and a DVD.

The event’s invitation called the $50 a “suggested contribution” and said “excess proceeds” would go to charity.

The video ended with former President Bill Clinton, who told Suozzi to “Keep your head up and keep going. We need you.”

Told of the event, Legis. Peter Schmitt (R-Massapequa) the incoming majority leader, decried the defeated county executive’s vanity video: “Self-praise stinks.

Suozzi’s father, Joseph, who attended the event,could not say what his son will do next.

>>VIDEO: Click here to watch the farewell video for Suozzi

“He’ll move on and keep serving,” he said.

“He’s already done a lot more than I ever expected.”

With Celeste Hadrick

>> PHOTOS: Thomas Suozzi through the years

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