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Long IslandPoliticsSpin Cycle

Nassau Dems focus on Trump to raise money for Assembly race

It’s no surprise that Democrats nationally are already using President Donald Trump to raise funds for next year’s midterm elections.

Now local party leaders are trying the same tact — for a vacant state Assembly seat that Republicans have held for more than 20 years.

The Nassau County Democratic Committee last week sent a fundraising email on behalf of teacher Christine Pellegrino, their nominee in the May 23 special election for the 9th Assembly District — covering the south shore of eastern Nassau and western Suffolk — that mentions Trump before the candidate.

“Donald Trump won more than half of the Legislative Districts in Nassau County,” the email states. “We have to show the GOP that Nassau is NOT Trump County.”

Pellegrino, a West Islip resident and leader in Long Island’s “opt-out” movement against standardized student testing, is facing Conservative Tom Gargiulo of Babylon, a retired teacher and coach who also has the backing of Republicans and the Independence Party. Republican Joseph Saladino vacated the seat earlier this year upon his appointment as Oyster Bay town supervisor.

The special election, Nassau Democrats said, “is our first chance to show Trump and the GOP that we mean business!”

While Hillary Clinton defeated Trump in Nassau County, the president won the Assembly district with nearly 60 percent of the vote.

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