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Opinion

EDITORIAL: Newsday's endorsement in the 6th State Assembly District

Democrat Phil Ramos, 55, is savvy to the ways of the Assembly. That's both his strength and his weakness.

It means that the four-term incumbent from Central Islip has been able to deliver money for downtown beautification, an anti-graffiti effort and an anti-gang campaign that includes after-school and drug programs. His proposal for a "gang court" could help too. But success has made him reluctant to challenge the status quo.

Republican Mohsen Elsayed, 52, of Brentwood, is a businessman and former U.S. Defense Department consultant in Iraq. He wants to cap property taxes and state spending and repeal the Metropolitan Transportation Authority payroll tax, all good things. But a Republican newcomer in the Democratic-controlled Assembly would, unfortunately, mean less for the district.

Ramos should be more inclusive of all his constituents at home. And he should take a broader view of the need for reform in Albany, even when that means bucking his party leadership. Newsday endorses Ramos.

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