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Though nominated for Suffolk clerk, Nolan may end up with judicial nod

Suffolk Legislative Counsel George Nolan earned praise for

Suffolk Legislative Counsel George Nolan earned praise for his fairness and knowledge from both Democrats and Republicans. Credit: Barry Sloan

Suffolk Legislative Counsel George Nolan last week unexpectedly was inserted as a last-minute replacement as the Democratic nominee to  run against veteran GOP County Clerk Judith Pascale, but that candidacy only is expected to last less than two months.

The good news for Nolan is that the nomination means he is virtually assured of getting his long-sought Democratic nomination for state Supreme Court  judge with the prospect of Conservative and Independence Party backing as well.

Nolan is replacing Babylon Town Clerk Gerry Compitello in the clerk race because Democrats want to allow Presiding Officer DuWayne Gregory to exit as the Working Families Party nominee for Congress against GOP Rep. Peter King. That would allow the minor party to give its nod to Liuba Grechen Shirley, who defeated Gregory in a primary last month.

But the only way Democrats can legally make the shift is if Gregory fills a vacancy for a candidate seeking a judical nomination. That means Democrats appear committed to giving Nolan the nod for judge at a party convention that will be held in September. Once Nolan officially gets the nomination, he will vacate the clerk’s race, and the party will replace him with Gregory, who will run only a token candidacy on one line.

In other races, Democrats also named Rona Smith of Greenport to replace Arthur Tillman in the  2nd Assembly District,  and Tim Hall of Selden to run for the 5th Assembly District seat  to replace Deborah Slinkosky of Holbrook.

The Independence Party, meanwhile, named Democratic Family Court Judge Karen Kerr  to replace Jennifer Mendelsohn on the minor party line.

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