In Congressional Primary, Gershon Has Slight Lead in Democratic Race

Justin Meinken
Perry Gershon is leading the primary election results for in-person voting, closely followed by Nancy Goroff.

In an unprecedented primary due to COVID-19, there were few clear winners at the end of Tuesday night.

An unusual number of absentee ballots requested throughout the state and on Long Island mean the final results in local races will not be known for a week, at the very earliest. The absentee ballots — of which there could be as many as 200,000 mailed in on Long Island alone — cannot even begin to be counted until July 1, when ballots must be received by the county Board of Elections.

Based solely on votes cast at the polls, here are the results so far for the Democratic primaries in Suffolk County:

In the four-way race for the Democratic nod to run for First Congressional District seat, Perry Gershon has a slight lead with 35.39 percent of the vote. If Gershon, an East Hampton resident, were to maintain the edge over the other candidates, it would be his second run for Rep. Lee Zeldin’s seat.

Closely tailing Gerson is Nancy Goroff, the Stony Brook professor, with 34.27 percent of the votes cast at the polls. Only 114 votes separated her from Gershon. He received 5,116 votes, while Goroff received 5,002.

Bridget Fleming, who serves as a Suffolk County Legislator and lives in Noyac, received 27.83 percent, or 4,062 votes, of the in-person ballots cast. Gregory-John Fischer took in just 2.21 percent.

Laura A. Ahearn is in the lead as the Democrats’ candidate for New York State Senate in the First District, a seat currently held by Ken LaValle, who is retiring. She received 31.03 percent — 2,360 votes — of the ballots at the polls, followed closely by Valerie M. Cartright, the Brookhaven Town councilwoman and civil rights attorney, with 27.88 percent, or 2,120 votes. Ahearn founded the Crime Victims Center/Parents for Megan’s Law, a rape crisis and crime victims center nearly 25 years ago.

Tommy John Schiavoni, a Southampton Town councilman, received 23.83 percent of the vote. He took in 1,812 votes. Meanwhile, Skyler Johnson, a college student from Mt. Sinai, received 12.43 percent, and Nora Higgins, a nurse and labor leader, got just 4.68 percent.

The former Riverhead Town Supervisor, Laura Jens-Smith, looks like the likely winner in the race for the Democratic backing to run the New York State Assembly seat in the Second District. She received 77.86 percent vote, while her opponent William Schleisner received just 21.97 percent.

The seat is currently held by Anthony Palumbo, who has the Republican’s nomination to run for LaValle’s seat. The Suffolk GOP selected Jodi Gigglio, a Riverhead Town councilwoman, to replace Palumbo.

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