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Nassau GOP nominee criticized by Dems

Nico Fiorello, 17, of Seaford, will be visiting

Nico Fiorello, 17, of Seaford, will be visiting Nassau University Medical Center in East Meadow on Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2015 to thank the staff who treated him after he broke a bone in his neck that put him in danger of being paralyzed for life. Credit: Handout

Republican stalwart Richard Bianculli got slapped around a bit by Democrats before he was confirmed Monday by the Republican-run Nassau County Legislature to be a member of the board of the Nassau Health Care Corp., which runs Nassau University Medical Center, a nursing home and several clinics.

Democrats said Bianculli lacked any medical background and was immersed in partisan politics, serving as treasurer for the campaign committee of Nassau GOP Chairman Joseph Mondello. The appointment was approved 11-7 on a party-line vote.

Bianculli replaced Uniondale obstetrician Leonard Benedict, whose term had expired.

Flash back 15 months to Dec. 9, 2009 when the lame-duck Democrats were running the legislature and were in the process of appointing Carle Place lawyer Steve Cohn to the same hospital board.

Cohn’s political mentor, Independence Party leader Bobby Kumar, escorted him around the legislative chamber, and several Democrats came down the dais to shake hands with both men.

Cut to last summer. Cohn suddenly popped up a candidate for governor on the Tea Party line — a line that legitimate Tea Party activists had never heard of.

Cohn was eventually knocked off the ballot on a technicality — he didn’t have a running mate for lieutenant governor, as required by law — but the thinking was that he would drain votes away from Republican Carl Paladino, who did have some Tea Party support, and help Democrat Andrew Cuomo.

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