All five Long Island members of the House of Representatives appear to have won re-election Tuesday despite Republican gains elsewhere that gave the GOP the majority of that chamber. But the race in the easternmost congressional district may linger in limbo for a few weeks while election inspectors review the results of the most-watched contest.
Rep. Tim Bishop (D-Southampton) said that while he currently has a 3,461 vote lead over Republican challenger Randy Altschuler, the race is far from over as there are 9,000 absentee ballots that need counting. Despite the uncertainty, Bishop remained confident that the ballots were cast for him. And given the intensity of the campaign, both he and Altschuler will surely spare no expense as the process unfolds.
“The voters have taken out their anger on the party in power,” Bishop said. Republicans picked up at least five of eight House seats that were held by Democrats in New York, four in upstate New York and one on Staten Island.
Rep. Steve Israel (D-Dix Hills) beat out John Gomez, Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-Bayside) defeated Republican Dr. James Milano and Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-Mineola) rebounded from early returns that showed Republican challenger Francis X. Becker in the lead.
Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford), LI’s lone Republican congressman, will likely regain the chairmanship of the Homeland Security Committee with his party back in the majority.
“It’s a repudiation, I believe, of President Obama’s policies and too much spending, and too much apologizing for America,” King said.
Israel said the GOP has their work cut out for them. “Republicans have shown us they’re good at politics. Now they have to show us they know how to govern.”
This story was reported by Spencer Rumsey, Christopher Twarowski and Timothy Bolger. It was written by Bolger.