- CORRECTION – The original version of this article incorrectly stated that Congresswoman Nita Lowey is running unopposed. She is opposed by Reform Party candidate Joe Ciardullo
BY KATHY KAHN
With less than two weeks to go before the mid-term elections, Rocklanders will face an array of choices come Tuesday, November 6, as they go to the polls.
On the National level, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, who was appointed to her seat when former NYS Sen. Hillary Clinton was chosen by Obama to be U.S. Secretary of State, will run for second term. She is being challenged by Republican Chele Farley, who is also running on the Conservative and Reform lines.
U.S. Assemblywoman Nita Lowey (D-17th Congressional District) is opposed by Reform Party candidate Joe Ciardullo, running a campaign based on putting “the average Joe” in office, while incumbent Ellen Jaffee (D-97th Congressional District) has a Republican/Conservative challenger, Chestnut Ridge Mayor Rosario Presti, Jr. (R)
Many pollsters (Wall Street Journal and Sienna among them) say the breech is narrowing in the Empire State between Democrats and Republicans, with the Democratic Party holding a slim lead. Many on the north side of the Tappan Zee Bridge feel left out of the process by the incumbent Governor, who has spent the bulk his time wooing the five boroughs and Long Island, while Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul has spent the bulk of her campaigning closer to the Canadian border when she’s not in New York City.
His challenger, Republican Marc Molinaro and his running mate, Julie Killian, former Mayor of Rye, along the growing rumbling of voters who want to hear how both sides would handle the future of the state, finally got their face-to-face debate with Cuomo on CBS this week. The showdown was a first for Cuomo, who is seeking a third term.
Incumbent New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli (D) will face off against Republican challenger Jonathan Trichter, Green Party candidate Marc Dunlea and four others, including civil rights attorney Michael Sussman.
In the NYS Senate race, Democrat James Skoufis (99th Dist.) has given up his Assembly seat to challenge Stony Point Councilman Thomas Basile for the 39th Senatorial District, which includes parts of Orange County and the Town of Stony Point in Rockland. The two faced off in two separate debates, one held in Stony Point on Monday evening, the other in Newburgh Wednesday evening. Incumbent NYS Senator David Carlucci (D-38th District) is being challenged by former Rockland County executive, C. Scott Vanderhoef.
In the NYS Assembly race, Kenneth Zebrowski (D-96th District) is running unopposed, while four-term incumbent Ellen Jaffee (D-97th Dist.) will face Republican Joseph Chabot, also running on the Conservative and Reform lines. Incumbent Karl Brabenec (R-98th Dist.) is being challenged by Democrat Scott Martens. In the 99th Assembly District, Colin Schmitt (R/C) will run against Matthew Rettig (D/Working Families) for the seat Skoufis is vacating.
Depending on your town or village, here are others running in hyper-local elections who are off and running as well:
Rockland Legislature: Itamar Yeger will run unopposed fill the unexpired term of Ilan Schoenberger
Village of Nyack-two Democrats are running for the trustee position: Donna Lightfoot Cooper and Louise Parker.
Town of Orangetown Clerk’s unexpired term will find Rosanna Sfraga (R/C/I) running against Robert Tompkins (D)
Village of Piermont-Incumbent Richard Burns (D) will face off against Nathan Mitchell (I)
Town of Ramapo will see Yehuda Weissmandle running for town council and David Fried (D) running for Town Justice.
Village of Sloatsburg: Mayor Carl Wright is running unopposed, as well as trustees John Bonkoski and Peter Akey.
Village of Suffern Trustees (choose two): Gina Bertolino (RCI); Steven Albert (D); Paul Girard (D); and Joseph Russo (R/C/I) Suffern will also have a referendum on giving a benefit to its volunteer firemen. Incumbent Justice Ernest Byonocore (D/R/C) will face challenger Vincent Altieri (W
Town of Clarkstown-Two referendums will appear on the November 6 ballot: One to change the term for council member from two to four years; the second will be to change the term for the supervisor, town clerk and highway superintendent from two to four years.
After reading this, take two Tylenol and re-read quietly tomorrow. But whatever you do, don’t forget to vote–every vote counts!