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CAMPAIGN 2006 - PRIMARY DAY - Winning & Waiting – QNS.com

CAMPAIGN 2006 – PRIMARY DAY – Winning & Waiting

Uncertified results from the Tuesday, September 12 primaries show two local senate races as too close to call - with only a difference of 200 or so votes separating the candidates - and could trigger recounts in both of the contests.
In the race between incumbent Senator John Sabini and opponent City Councilmember Hiram Monserrate in the 13th Senate District, Sabini was reported in the lead Wednesday morning, September 13, with 50.87 percent of the vote before absentee ballots were counted, making it only a 208 vote difference. Sabini was elected to the Senate in 2002 after serving as a member of the City Council for 10 years. Prior to becoming a Councilmember for the 21st District, Monserrate worked as a New York City Police Officer.
In the other close race in the 10th Senatorial District, incumbent, long-time Senator Ada Smith was trailing candidate Shirley Huntley by a little less than 200 votes without the absentee ballots. Smith is in her ninth term but has made headlines in the last year for allegedly throwing coffee in the face of an aide. Huntley has been involved in the community as the head Community Council for Education District 28 and a long-time member of Community Board 12.
It could be a while before Queens residents know who the winners are.
&#8220The numbers have not been certified by the commissioners,” said Valerie Vazquez, Director of Communications for the New York City Board of Elections, explaining that the vote tallies as of Wednesday, September 13 were not official. &#8220In one week, we will open the machines and get the official tally from each machine, and eight days after [the primary] we open up all absentee ballots, federal and military ballots.”
Vazquez said that in about two weeks the official results from election will be certified by the Board of Elections commissioners, at which time, recounts, if necessary, will be conducted.
In the three-way race in the 22nd Assembly District, Ellen Young, who was backed by the Queens County Democratic Organization, beat out Terence Park and Julia Harrison. Young's credentials include stints as a District Administrator in the office of Councilmember John Liu and as a District Leader for the 22nd Assembly District.
The seat is currently held by Assemblymember Jimmy Meng, who announced his decision to retire due to health problems. His daughter, Grace Meng, had been a candidate for the seat until she was questioned about her residency and decided not to appeal.
&#8220We will work hard towards securing a victory for her [Young] and all Democrats in the general election,” Assemblymember Meng said. &#8220Let us focus on uniting and serving our Flushing community and the State of New York.”
With approximately 80 percent of the vote, current District 39 Assemblymember Jos Peralta won the primary election over challenger Carmen F. Enriquez. Peralta, who was elected to the Assembly in 2002, said that he is looking forward to continuing to serve the community.
&#8220It was a great victory not only for me but for the community,” Peralta said. &#8220This community has a lot of needs … and they've given me an opportunity to do it again. I feel very blessed that I was given that opportunity.”
Rory Lancman, another candidate who had been endorsed by the Queens County Democratic Organization, also won his race for the 25th Assembly District seat vacated by Assemblymember Brian McLaughlin who retired amid a federal investigation. In beating challenger Morshed Alam, Lancman received more than three-quarters of the vote.
&#8220It's extremely gratifying,” Lancman said. &#8220I still have to win the general election in November. I wouldn't presume to think that the election is over.”
In the statewide races, there were no surprises. Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, the heavy favorite, defeated Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi to become the Democratic candidate for New York Governor. He received about 80 percent of the votes and will now run against Republican candidate John Faso.
Andrew Cuomo also triumphed over Mark Green and Sean Patrick Maloney in the race for Attorney General, bringing in more than 50 percent of the vote. Cuomo will face Republican candidate Jeanine Pirro, Westchester County District Attorney, in November's general election.
United States Senator Hillary Clinton easily won her primary over Jonathan Tasini and will face Republican candidate John Spencer who beat out K.T. McFarland in the primary.

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