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Queens sees higher voter turnout in Nov. 8 general election

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Voters cast their vote at Lady of Hope Catholic School in Maspeth on election day. (Photo by Gabriele Holtermann)

With Election Day in the rear view mirror and results solidifying, the numbers are telling us that turnout was strong among the five boroughs, which is typically unprecedented for a midterm election. 

More than one million New Yorkers cast their ballot this year for hotly-contested races like the battle for the governor’s mansion. Here in Queens, there were a few races to pay close attention to that received high turnout.

Republican George Santos declared victory over Democrat Robert Zimmerman in the 3rd Congressional District race, which includes a portion of northeast Queens and much of northern Nassau County. Santos, who attended the Jan. 6, 2021, rally that led up to the Capitol insurrection, is poised to replace the outgoing Democrat Tom Suozzi.

Zimmerman conceded the race to Santos early Wednesday morning. Santos led with 52.55% of the vote (142,017 votes) as of Wednesday, according to the state Board of Elections. The total includes votes out of Queens and Nassau counties. Zimmerman had collected more votes in Queens (22,594 to Santos’ 21,746), but the vote swung in Santos’ favor in Nassau County (120,271 to Zimmerman’s 97,466).

As of 6 p.m. yesterday, just a few hours before the polls closed, Queens had 338,321 voters cast a ballot, which also included early voting check-ins, according to the city’s Board of Elections (BOE). Over 28,000 mail-in ballots were returned but only 17,411 were valid and scanned, according to the city’s BOE.

Another high-turnout race was the battle for the 23rd Assembly District in South Queens. Republican Thomas P. Sullivan is neck-and-neck with incumbent Democrat Stacey G. Pheffer Amato in an extremely close race. As of this morning, Sullivan earned 15,246 votes (50.37%) compared to Amato’s 15,000 (49.56%) with 94% of scanners reported. 

Lower turnout in the borough was seen in the 40th Assembly District, where Democrat Ron Kim beat his Republican challenger Sharon A. Liao. Kim received 7,521 votes (51.84%) and Liao earned 6,971 votes (48.05%). 

For state Senate seats, the 11th District saw very high turnout with incumbent Democrat Toby Ann Stavisky earning 34,784 votes (55.96%) compared to her Republican challenger Stefano Forte with 27,336 votes (43.98%). As of this morning, 62,155 votes were counted in this race. 

Another incumbent Democrat was able to beat out their opposition in New York’s 15th Senatorial District. Democrat Joseph P. Addabbo Jr. received 28,681 votes (56.86%) while Republican Danniel S. Maio earned 21,693 votes (43%). With 94% of scanners reported, 50,443 total votes were counted in this race. 

Among the races with the highest turnout was for the 5th Congressional District seat between Democrat Gregory W. Meeks and Republican Paul King. Meeks came out with 97,981 votes (75%) beating King who had 32,393 votes (24.82%). Overall, 130,528 votes were counted with 96% of scanners reported.

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