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Scattered Clouds 41° Good Evening

Late to the party

Good afternoon. Today’s points:

  • No party for Maragos
  • Volunteer firefighters make doctor’s appointment
  • The mortgage crisis blame game

Daily Point

Could Nassau Dems have a 2017 primary on their hands?

Some Nassau County Democrats began pushing back against county Comptroller George Maragos being the party’s potential next candidate for county executive even before Maragos, a Republican, announced Thursday he was changing party affiliations to make the run.

Veteran party members say he’s no Democrat, despite Maragos saying Thursday that his values now are more aligned with his new party. The opposition seems to pit them against party leader Jay Jacobs, who was at Maragos’ announcement and said he was “excited” by the comptroller getting into the race.

Dems say Maragos’ skeletons include his denunciation in 2012 of Republican foes in the primary for the U.S. Senate. He called them “closet liberals” for not denouncing strongly enough the legalization of same-sex marriage in New York. Others are his enthusiastic embrace of tea party endorsements in 2012; his rejection of abortion, except in cases of rape, incest and when the mother’s life is in danger; and his praise of former Sen. Alfonse D’Amato.

Among Democrats rumored to be interested in the county executive race are Long Beach City Manager Jack Schnirman, who recently filed paperwork to create an exploratory committee; Assemb. Charles Lavine of Glen Cove; and county Legis. Laura Curran of Baldwin.

The prospect of a Democratic civil war could be why GOP leader Joe Mondello was so gracious in his send-off of Maragos.

Michael Dobie

Pencil Point

On Obama’s mind


The buck stops here

State Senate candidate Adam Haber, a Democrat, is trying to blame his opponent for the subprime mortgage crisis that tanked the economy in 2007.

Republican Elaine Phillips, the mayor of Flower Hill, spent 25 years on Wall Street and was a vice president for mortgage-backed securities sales at Goldman Sachs beginning in 1992. In April, Goldman settled a suit alleging deceptive mortgage practices for $5 billion.

A spokesman for the Haber campaign has said Phillips was “personally involved in people’s lives being ruined.”

However, the Phillips campaign says she left Goldman’s sales division in 2007 and departed the company in 2009. The campaign pointed to Haber’s own work as a commodities trader, in which he profited from market volatility.

So the race for the 7th District seat, probably crucial in deciding which party will control the chamber, is mired in debate about which candidate from the “1 percent” had a career that was more responsible for the housing crash a decade ago. Perhaps a financial background is no longer an asset for elective office.

Anne Michaud

Bonus Point


It was wheels up for Air Force One at 3 p.m. Thursday for the 11-hour flight to Israel. Joining President Barack Obama in the official delegation for the funeral of Shimon Peres were two members of L.I.’s congressional delegation: Steve Israel and Lee Zeldin. Also on board were former President Bill Clinton and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, as well as many other prominent Democrats.

Will the Dems share their apples and honey with Zeldin, the only Jewish Republican in the House?

Rita Ciolli