Long Island Votes on Santos Replacement

Snow could be a major factor in tight race
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 13, 2024 4:36 PM CST
Long Island Votes on Santos Replacement
Congressional candidate Mazi Pilip speaks at her fundraiser event hosted by the Nassau County Republican Committee on Monday, Feb. 5, 2024, in Jericho, New York.   (AP Photo/Brittainy Newman)

A major snowstorm kept turnout low on Tuesday in the special election to replace expelled Rep. George Santos. Both candidates—Democratic former Rep, Tom Suozzi and Republican candidate Mazi Pilip—offered voters free transportation to polling sites in New York's 3rd congressional district, which includes part of Long Island and a section of New York City's Queens borough, the New York Times reports. With polls pointing to a tight race, Suozzi, who represented the district for six years but didn't seek re-election in 2022, could benefit from the weather, NBC News reports. Republicans vote disproportionately on Election Day, while Democrats are more likely to vote early.

"For partisans on both sides who believe in divine intervention, the weather will decide whether God is a Democrat or Republican," former Rep. Steve Israel, a Democrat who represented the district for four years, joked Tuesday, per the Times. "And whether he votes in special elections." Republican Nassau County executive Bruce Blakeman, meanwhile, said he was "personally offended" by suggestions from Democrats that the county might only plow routes that favored GOP voters.

Voters who braved the snow told CBS New York that they felt it was important to vote because of issues including immigration and abortion. "We need someone good. We don't need someone like Santos," one voter said. With the GOP holding a razor-thin majority in the House, both parties have spent millions of dollars on the race, which is seen as a chance to test their messaging ahead of the November election, the BBC reports. Results will come in after the polls close at 9pm Eastern—and whichever way it goes, Pilip and Suozzi are expected to compete again in November. (More George Santos stories.)

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