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A sneak peak for The Point readers: See who Newsday is endorsing in the gubernatorial primary.
Florence and the voting machine
Hurricane season is campaigning against election season this year.
There’s a storm brewing, and the U.S. Weather Service is already telling state and city emergency management to get their contingency plans in place should Florence take a turn toward the East Coast next week. Political operatives, concerned about how to get voters out to the polls for the primary election on Sept. 13, also are keeping a watchful eye.
According to forecasters, the risk of a direct impact from storm Florence has increased, but there is still large uncertainty in the models of the storm’s track.
Turnout in primary elections is usually quite low. Back in 2014, when Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo faced challenger Zephyr Teachout in the gubernatorial primary, just 9 percent of the state’s 5.8 million registered Democrats voted — and that was on a partly-sunny, 72-degree day.
“We are monitoring the weather,” Nassau County Democratic chairman Jay Jacobs told The Point. “I am working to change that storm’s course,” he joked.
Steve Romano is working with Juan Vides, an outsider challenging the Democratic Party’s pick in the 20th Assembly District, which runs in the high-risk area along the South Shore, including Long Beach. Romano said he wasn’t too concerned. “Voters want change, and we’re confident they’ll come out to vote for that change.”
Congressional politics: still trumped by traffic.
Rep. Lee Zeldin and his Democratic challenger Perry Gershon were set to appear at a Peconic River Sportsman’s Club “Legislature Night” on Sept. 15, in what would have been the candidates’ first such joint forum. There was a lot of back and forth to get their presence finalized but now the event has been canceled. Various candidates for offices from Congress “down to dogcatcher” were invited, says Dan Karas, a representative from the club. Not enough politicians agreed to show up. (For the record, Zeldin had appeared at the event in 2014 and 2016.)
More important, there wasn’t sufficient interest among the membership this year. Karas says that the event is usually held on Fridays around 6, but “you know what the expressway is like at that time.” So the club tried a tweak. Apparently the new time — 4 p.m. on a Saturday — wasn’t great either.
Never fear. Zeldin, Republican of Shirley, and Gershon, of East Hampton, now have other meetings in the works, including with the League of Women Voters. Assuming, of course, no one gets stuck in bumper to bumper.
To whom it may concern
Birds of a feather
The candidates for New York attorney general are all fighting for the same spot. Two of them, though, have been in the same spots for much of their lives.
Democratic candidate Leecia Eve, who faces a primary next Thursday, and the sole Republican candidate, Keith Wofford, both grew up in Buffalo, but their connections are a lot closer than just their city of origin. Both also graduated from City Honors School at Fosdick-Masten Park, an academic magnet school for gifted and talented students, Eve in 1982 and Wofford in 1986.
And both also attended Harvard Law School.
So if the two end up facing each other in the general election, bragging rights will have to go to the undergraduate alma mater of the winner. That’s Smith College for Eve, and Harvard once again for Wofford.