Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano, awaiting trial on federal corruption charges, will not seek a third term on the Republican line after he missed Thursday’s deadline to submit ballot petitions.
Mangano’s inaction, widely expected in political circles, likely means that his eight-year tenure as Nassau’s top elected official will end Dec. 31 and ensures that former state Sen. Jack Martins will be the GOP county executive nominee without facing a primary.
But sources said Mangano is still holding out hope that he could secure the Independence Party line in the November general election.
Mangano had until Thursday to submit at least 2,000 signatures from GOP voters to the county’s Board of Elections. “County Executive Ed Mangano did not file Republican nominating petitions today,” Deputy County Executive Ed Ward said in a statement.
Martins submitted 34,322 signatures on Thursday to run on the Republican line. He submitted signatures for the Conservative and Reform party lines.
“Having been the first to call for Ed Mangano to resign, in October, I certainly did not expect him to run this year,” Martins said Thursday. “But I am focused on fighting to put Nassau County back on the right track to make sure Nassau’s best years are still ahead.”
Mangano’s political career turned last October when, prosecutors said, he was charged with receiving “bribes and kickbacks” from Bethpage restaurateur Harendra Singh in exchange for county work. Mangano’s wife Linda and former Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto were also charged. All pleaded not guilty.
In March, Nassau GOP chairman Joseph Mondello told Mangano that backing him for a third term was “not in the best interest of the Republican Party.” Mondello declined to comment Thursday.
While county political leaders have moved on from Mangano, a source familiar with the county executive’s thinking said he is holding out hope that he will be nominated by the Independence Party.
“The hope is somehow the case is dismissed . . . and all of a sudden he can go and try to talk to people,” said the source.
The minor party is circulating petitions with the name of its chairman, Rick Bellando, as its county executive candidate. Bellando would be a placeholder, sources said, and must decline the nomination by July 17. The party would then have until July 21 to name a new candidate. Bellando did not respond to calls for comment.
Legis. Laura Curran (D-Baldwin) and Nassau Comptroller George Maragos will compete in a September primary for the Democratic county executive nomination.