GLEN COVE, N.Y. – It’s a tight race with national implications.
Residents in New York’s 3rd Congressional District in Queens and Long Island have been waiting for months to replace.
The special election is Tuesday. Money has been pouring in.
Both parties are now concerned.
Congressional Democratic candidate Tom Suozzi shared his favorite Italian treats with Glen Cove voters Monday, and reminded them that snow and sleet should not keep them away from the voting booth. He said he wants his old seat back.
“Regardless of what happens, weather’s going to affect the Republicans and Democrats alike. Historically, Republicans turn out earlier, and Democrats turn out later,” Suozzi said.
Suozzi and Republican challenger Mazi Pilip, a Nassau County legislator, are neck and neck in the critical race to replace expelled and disgraced Rep. George Santos.
“It may snow a little, but I’m not worried. The reason for that, voters are very engaged in this election,” Pilip said.
Like everything else in this race, even the weather is too close to call.
“At the beginning of this race, everybody predicted a torrent of money, but I don’t think anyone would have thought it would exceed $20 million in this short of time for one seat,” political strategist Lawrence Levy of Hofstra National Center Suburban Studies said.
Early voting is in. More than 57,000 voters cast ballots in Nassau, along with another 9,000 in Queens. More were registered Democrats than Republicans, but 20% were unaffiliated. Some 500,000 have yet to cast a ballot.
“They are going to come out. People want to vote. They want to express their opinion. People on our side are very fed up,” Nassau Republican Chairman Joseph Cairo said.
Voters CBS New York’s Jennifer McLogan were split down the middle about what they care most about.
“The main thing right now is immigration,” one said.
“Just supporting rent is a monthly difficulty,” said another.
“A lot of people don’t feel safe going out to dinner,” one voter said.
Other voters said they worry most about climate change, abortion, semiautomatic assault weapons, and immigration, which is Pilip’s main talking point.
“We are talking about securing our borders, controlling the migrant crisis and bringing safety to our country,” Pilip said.
“People are sick and tired of what’s happening in Washington, D.C., with the dysfunction, partisanship, fighting with each other. I represent change. An antidote, to get people to work together again,” Suozzi said.
Early voting was only at designated sites. District 3 voters should vote at their usual polling places Tuesday.