2016-09-21 / Political Page

Republicans Eye Democratic Seats In Albany


In a hoped-for revival of the Queens Republican Party in November – and some help from Donald Trump – party leaders for the first time in several years have put a team of candidates together to challenge Democrats in Albany in the November elections.

Queens Democrats have completely dominated the Republicans in the last four or five years by occupying the 18 Assembly seats and 7 State Senate posts in Albany, as well as the 7 congressional seats in Washington.

But this year, under a new team of county officers led by county Chairman Bob Turner, and emboldened by Trump’s candidacy, the patronage-starved Queens Republicans have entered one candidate for Congress; 6 for state senate seats, challenging all but one incumbent; and 7 candidates to challenge for Assembly seats.

Here’s the way the battles shape up. For CONGRESS, there is just one Democratic lawmaker being challenged in this election, Congress Member Gregory Meeks who’s opposed by Mike O’Reilly in the 5th CD in Southeast Queens (the Rockaways, Cambria Heights, Hollis and Jamaica). O’Reilly, a former U.S. Marine who attended night school to earn a law degree while working days the financial district. He and his wife, Angela, reside in Queens (address not given).

STATE SENATE (12th District): Marvin Jeffcoat is the Republican candidate, trying to displace Democrat Michael Gianaris in the district which includes Astoria, Long Island City, Ridgewood, Woodhaven and Ozone Park.

STATE SENATE (13th District): State Senator Jose Peralta (D–Jackson Heights) is being challenged for the seat by Republican newcomer Jesus Gonzalez, an enthusiastic community leader. The district includes Corona, Elmhurst, East Elmhurst and Woodside.

STATE SENATE (14th District): Republicans are going with Jarret Freeman against incumbent Leroy Comrie, a longtime leader in Jamaica. Freeman is an official at the College and Community Fellowship and also a representative to the United Nations for Pathways to Peace. The district includes Jamaica, Queens Village, Hollis, St. Albans, Jamaica Estates and Kew Gardens.

STATE SENATE (15th District): Republicans chose Mike Conigliaro, a lifelong Richmond Hill resident, now living in Rego Park, to challenge Democrat Joseph Addabbo Jr. of Howard Beach. Conigliaro, a St. John’s University graduate, now manages a successful law firm. Addabbo, a veteran of 10 years service in the Senate, is very active in the Howard Beach community. The district includes Howard Beach, the Rockaways, Kew Gardens, Forest Hills, Ozone Park and South Ozone Park.

STATE SENATE (16th District): State Senator Toby Ann Stavisky, the veteran Democrat, is opposed by Carlos Giron, a Republican, the former Director of Communications with Major League Soccer. He was born in Guatemala, but came to the U.S. as a child. Stavisky is a 20-year veteran in the Senate. The 16th District includes Bayside, Flushing Bay Terrace, Beechhurst and Rego Park.

23RD ASSEMBLY DISTRICT: Republican Alan Zwirn, a resident of Rockaway, is eyeing the Assembly seat to be vacated by Assemblyman Phillip Goldfeder in the district which includes the Rockaway, Breezy Point and part of Howard Beach. Zwirn has lived in the Rockaways for 25 years.

24TH ASSEMBLY DISTRICT: Democrat David Weprin, who has been a leading lawmaker in the City Council and Assembly, is being challenged by Republican Ira Harris, a Republican, in the November election. Harris is a lifelong small business owner and community activist. The district stretches from Little Neck to Richmond Hill. While in the City Council, Weprin was Finance Committee Chairman for eight years.

25TH ASSEMBLY DISTRICT: Assembly Member Nily Rozic, a Fresh Meadows Democrat, is a bright new member of the Assembly. Rozic has drawn Republican Usman Ali Chohan as her opponent in the election. The district includes Flushing, Hillcrest, Bayside, Douglaston, and Oakland Gardens.

30TH ASSEMBLY DISTRICT: Brian Barnwell is a Woodside attorney who defeated veteran Assembly Member Marge Markey in last week Democratic primary election to become the candidate in the November election, where he will face Republican Tony Nunziato for the 30th AD seat. Nunziato is well known in the floral business in Maspeth. Barnwell, a 30-yearold attorney has been leading the opposition to the city’s plan to establish a men’s shelter in a shuttered motel.

33RD ASSEMBLY DISTRICT: Francois Wellington is the Republican Party candidate for the 33rd AD seat, opposed by veteran Democrat, Assembly Member Barbara Clark.

38TH ASSEMBLY DISTRICT: Assemblyman Michael Miller, a Woodhaven Democrat, is being challenged by Republican Joseph Maldonado in the November election. The district includes Woodhaven, Ridgewood, Richmond Hill and Glendale.

40TH ASSEMBLY DISTRICT: Assemblyman Ron Kim, the Democratic incumbent, will face Republican Miriam Rodriguez in the November election. The district includes Flushing and Queensboro Hill.

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