The Nassau County Board of Elections on Wednesday began to count paper ballots in last week’s special election between Democratic Assemb. Todd Kaminsky and Republican Christopher McGrath to fill the seat of former Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos.
Election officials counted about 25 percent of the nearly 3,200 absentee, affidavit and emergency ballots in the 9th Senate District race. They came primarily from Long Beach, said Democratic Elections Commissioner David Gugerty.
By day’s end, Kaminsky, who already held an unofficial 780-vote lead over McGrath, had increased his margin by about 200 votes, said John Ryan, counsel for Republican Elections Commissioner Louis Savinetti.
Ryan said he hoped to complete the count of paper ballots by week’s end.
Kaminsky (D-Long Beach) declared victory after the April 19 special election. And while Republican leaders, including Nassau GOP Chairman Joseph Mondello have conceded that Kaminsky won, McGrath, an attorney from Hewlett, has not conceded.
The Senate returns to session on Tuesday. The outcome of the race could be crucial to control of the Senate. Republicans hold 31 of 63 Senate seats but control the chamber due to a governing coalition with six breakaway Democrats.