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Long IslandSuffolk

Democrats lose seat — and their supermajority

A voter casts his vote at Great Hollow

A voter casts his vote at Great Hollow Middle School in Nesconset on Election Day, Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017. Credit: James Carbone

Suffolk Democrats held onto control of the Suffolk legislature Tuesday while losing their supermajority by a single seat.

By taking the 3rd District seat, Suffolk Republicans will have more influence in legislation approvals and bonding decisions. The current Democratic supermajority of 12 out of 18 seats has allowed Democrats to pass legislation virtually without needing any Republican approval.

Incumbents seeking re-election kept their seats. In four races without incumbents, seats were split between the parties.

Minority Leader Kevin McCaffrey said Republicans now have the votes to force Democrats to work with them “to make sure the voices of the voters and the taxpayers are heard every day.”

“Now the Democrats are going to have to deal with us,” McCaffrey said at a Suffolk GOP gathering in Patchogue on Tuesday night.

In a battleground race, Republican Rudolph Sunderman won the 3rd District seat of term-limited Democrat Kate Browning, whose legislative aide Joshua Slaughter, a Democrat, had run for the position.

“I’m excited for their support and I’m excited to get started on January first,” Sunderman said, thanking his family and voters.

Republicans also held onto their 11th District seat, which is being vacated by retiring Republican incumbent Thomas Barraga. Republican Steven J. Flotteron, an Islip Town Board member, beat Democrat Joseph McDermott, the mayor of the Village of Brightwaters.

Democrats defended their seats in the 16th and 17th districts, which are respectively opened by term-limited vacancies left by Democrat Steve Stern and Lou D’Amaro. In the 16th District, Democrat Susan A. Berland beat Republican Hector P. Gavilla. In the 17th District, Democrat Thomas P. Donnelly defeated Republican Michael J. Troetti and Reform Party candidate Robert E. Schuon Jr.

In the 6th Legislative District, Democratic incumbent Sarah S. Anker beat Republican challenger Gary D. Pollakusky, who had managed the campaign of Anker’s 2015 opponent Republican Steven Tricario, who lost by just 19 votes.

In other races:

  • -in the 1st District, incumbent Albert J. Krupski Jr., a Democrat, beat Republican challenger Remy Bell.
  • -in the 2nd District, Democratic incumbent Bridget M. Fleming beat Republican challenger Heather C. Collins.
  • -in the 4th District, Republican incumbent Thomas Muratore beat Democratic newcomer Dom Pascual.
  • -in the 5th District, incumbent Kara Hahn, a Democrat, beat Republican attorney Edward A. Flood, chief of staff to Assemb. Dean Murray.
  • -in the 7th District, Democratic incumbent Robert T. Calarco beat Republican challenger Christine T. Rignola.
  • -in the 8th District, Democratic incumbent William J. Lindsay beat Republican challenger Anthony A. Piccirillo by a thin margin.
  • -in the 9th District, Democratic incumbent Monica R. Martinez beat Douglas E. King, a Republican advocate for the disabled.
  • -in the 10th District, Republican incumbent Thomas Cilmi beat Democratic challenger Joseph S. Tronolone.
  • -in the 12th District, Republican incumbent Leslie A. Kennedy beat Democrat Kevin L. Hyms.
  • -in the 13th District, Republican incumbent Robert Trotta beat Democratic challenger Colleen T. Maher.
  • -in the 14th District, Republican incumbent Kevin J. McCaffrey beat Democratic challenger Claire A. McKeon.
  • -in the 15th District, the legislature’s presiding officer, DuWayne Gregory, beat Republican challenger Christopher M. Madden.
  • -In the 18th District, Democratic incumbent William R. Spencer beat Republican challenger Dom Spada and Green Party challenger Richard J. Florio.

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