Republican Suffolk County Legislature candidate Linda Kabot, in a political comeback bid, is challenging Democratic incumbent Bridget Fleming in a write-in primary for the Independence Party ballot line.
Kabot, 51, of Quogue, a former Southampton Town supervisor and town board member, is seeking a return to elected office after losing re-election for supervisor in 2009. Kabot also lost a write-in bid for Southampton supervisor in 2011, although she got 4,000 votes in the general election.
Fleming won her second term two years ago with more than 64 percent of the vote. But if the race this year becomes close, the Independence line could become significant. In 2017, Fleming got 1,129 votes, or 5.04 percent on the Independence Party line; in 2015, she got 829 votes, or 4.81 percent, on that line.
Kabot could not be reached for immediate comment. But Jesse Garcia, Suffolk GOP chairman, said Kabot has “great name recognition, is a tenacious campaigner and has an underdog attitude.” Garcia said Fleming, “has lost her way. She is too progressive even for the Hamptons.”
Garcia said the Second District is among "the targeted seats where we will expend resources and encourage donors to be involved.“
Fleming said she heard Kabot had filed nominating petitions for the write-in primary, but her team believes she has “overwhelming support” in the community. The Noyac Democrat cited her record of protecting the environment, improving infrastructure and combating opioid abuse and tick borne diseases, calling them “issues that resonate with the community.”
Kabot filed 172 petition signatures — more than the 132 minimum required -- which were postmarked April 11, the deadline date.