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Long IslandPoliticsSpin Cycle

Debating voter suppression at a Nassau hearing

Democrats on the Nassau County Legislature sharply questioned John Ciampoli, nominee for county attorney, on Monday about his history of representing Republicans in election law battles.

They suggested that he suppressed the minority vote, and voting by college students, in some upstate elections, but with little proof other than some old New York Times stories and anecdotes.

Just before the vote party-line that approved Republican Ciampoli on Monday, Democratic activist Doug Mayers of Freeport stepped to the podium and took at a slap at the Democrats.

“Democrats suppressed the vote when I ran against (Assemb.) Earlene Hooper (D-Hempstead). It’s no different. My party does it. The Republican Party does it,” Mayers said. “Now the shoe is on the other foot.”

Mayers — former head of the Freeport-Roosevelt NAACP and now head of the Long Island Caribbean Association — said later that Nassau Democrats knocked him off the ballot in 2000 when he tried to mount a primary against Hooper, a fixture here and in Albany.

“This is just poppycock,” he said of the Democratic criticism of Ciampoli.

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