The Suffolk County Republicans held their election night celebration at Stereo Garden in Patchogue. Primed for a night of big wins, the venue displayed bold, graphic signs of Republican candidates and featured parades of red, white, and blue balloon towers.
Former Republican assemblyman Dean Murray crushed newcomer Farzeen Bham for a seat in the New York State Senate in the Third District. Murray received nearly 65 percent of the vote with 62,094 votes to Bham’s 35 percent or 33,827 votes.
“I am thrilled and honored to have the support and confidence of the people of the Third Senate District and I look forward to getting up to Albany, rolling up my sleeves and getting to work,” he said after hearing of his win.
Murray will now return to a political seat after several years off. In 2018, after seven years representing the Third District in the state Assembly, Murray sought and lost the open seat in the Third State Senate District vacated by former Sen. Tom Croci.
Murray said he is excited to get to Albany to put a stop to the pro-criminal agenda as well as the tax-and-spend policies of the current leadership. He also hopes to focus on making New York a more “business-friendly” state, where businesses and entrepreneurs are encouraged to succeed. Additionally, he said, he would like to help provide more career training through BOCES, CTE programs, and apprenticeship programs.
Additionally, in the New York State Senate District 8, Alexis Weik won reelection to a new seat, due to the redistricting, with 69 percent of the vote or 85,662 votes to the Democratic paper candidate John Alberts, with 30 percent of the vote, or 38,469 votes, who did not actively campaign.
Then, in the New York State Assembly Third District, incumbent assemblyman Joseph DeStefano took over 63 percent of the vote with 21,625 votes against Trina Miles with 36.29 percent, or 12,316 votes, who also did not actively campaign. DeStefano said he is dedicated to making his community a better, safer place, and has devoted his life to serving his neighbors by running for another term.
“Thank you to the voters of the Third Assembly District for your faith and confidence in reelecting me,” he said Wednesday morning. “I’ll continue the fight on the issues important to you in a bipartisan manor: crime, taxes and government spending, inflation, and delivering government service in the most effective manner. I ran on my record of constituent services and I will keep my door open to everyone in any political party who needs my help.”
A little farther east in the New York State Assembly First District, incumbent Fred Thiele Jr. had a tight race, with 55 percent of the vote against Peter Ganley, who had 44 percent of the vote. About 62 percent of that vote was reported as of press time.
Republican congressman Lee Zeldin lost with 47 percent of the vote, or over 2.7 million votes, to incumbent Kathy Hochul’s 52 percent of the vote, or 3.02 million votes, in their race for New York State Governor. Hochul claimed victory Tuesday night.
“Tonight, a glass ceiling was shattered in the State of New York,” she wrote on her Twitter account. “Thank you to everyone who made it happen—this victory is yours.”
Zeldin conceded on Wednesday afternoon.
“I would like to congratulate New York Governor Kathy Hochul on her election to a full four-year term," he said. “This race was a once-in-a-generation campaign, with a very close margin in the bluest of blue states. The unrelenting passion and hard work of our grassroots volunteers and supporters made this incredibly close race possible and helped us win at least 49 of New York’s 62 counties. Republicans, Democrats and Independents united as New Yorkers, pouring their heart and soul into this campaign."
In his current seat, Republican Nicholas LaLota took the win with over 55 percent of the vote, or 165,261 votes, to Democratic contender Bridget Fleming, who had 44 percent of the vote, or 131,618 votes, while the neighboring Second Congressional District Republican incumbent Andrew Garbarino maintained his seat with 60 percent of the vote to Democratic contender Jackie Gordon’s 39 percent.
The full unofficial results of Tuesday’s election can be found on the Suffolk County Board of Elections website.
Sam Desmond added to this story.
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