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Nov 6, 2019 10:14 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Schneiderman Reelected In Southampton; Democrats Keep Control Of Board

Rick Martel at The Hamptons Stardard in Hampton Bays on election night.  RACHEL VALDESPINO
Nov 6, 2019 10:35 AM

Tuesday was a night for incumbents in Southampton Town, as Jay Schneiderman easily won a third term as supervisor, while his Democratic running mate, John Bouvier, cruised to a second term on the Town Board, assuring that the party will retain its 4-1 margin on the board for the next two years.

The four incumbent Town Trustees on the ballot also won reelection — though one seat could be up for grabs when absentee ballots are tallied — and a former longtime Trustee won a vacant fifth seat.

Mr. Schneiderman, a resident of Southampton, had 55.25 percent of the vote, a total of 7,087 votes — most on the Democratic line, plus 660 on the Conservative and 258 on the Working Families lines, according to unofficial results from the Suffolk County Board of Elections on Tuesday night.

Mr. Bouvier, of Westhampton, was the top vote-getter among five candidates for two Town Council seats with 6,388 votes.

Mr. Schneiderman’s Republican challenger, Gregory G. Robins of North Sea, a veteran firefighter and fire district commissioner, trailed with 3,788 votes, or 29.53 percent, while Independence Party candidate Alex D. Gregor of East Quogue, the town’s highway superintendent, managed 1,942 votes on the Independence and Libertarian lines, or 15.14 percent.

“There’s not much I can say,” Mr. Robins commented Wednesday morning. “It was an off-year election. He had three lines, and I had one. It was a three-way race. I thought I’d do better.”

Republican and Conservative challenger Richard W. Martel of Hampton Bays closely trailed Mr. Bouvier in the voting for Town Board, but bested three other candidates, winning the second council seat at stake in the election with 6,134 votes. His Republican and Conservative running mate, Charles McArdle of Hampton Bays, was third in the race for two seats, with 5,673 votes.

Mr. Bouvier’s Democratic running mate, first-time candidate Craig A. Catalanotto of Speonk, came in a close fourth with 5,416 votes, all of them cast on his single Democratic line.

“I wish you’d gotten in there,” Supervisor Schneiderman told Mr. Catalanotto on Tuesday night as he made his victory speech at the Silver Lining Diner in Southampton. “You’re not going to be a stranger. We’ll keep you involved.”

Democrat Bridget Fleming, running for a third two-year term on the Suffolk County Legislature from the 2nd District, cruised to victory over Republican challenger Linda Kabot, a former Southampton Town supervisor trying to make a political comeback. Legislator Fleming garnered 12,151 votes to Mr. Kabot’s 8,218.

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone, a Democrat, handily won reelection over his Republican challenger, John Kennedy Jr., 148,043-115,867.

Candidates who won most of their votes on the Democratic line will take control of the Southampton Town Trustees in 2020.

Incumbent Bill Pell, a member of the Independence Party and the top vote-getter in the 10-person race for five seats, breezed to reelection with 7,443 votes, followed in the voting by his running mate, Ann Welker, also an incumbent Independence Party member, with 6,771 votes. The vast majority of their votes came in on their Democratic lines.

Supervisor Schneiderman singled Ms. Welker out in his victory speech as “not only the first woman Town Trustee but the first reelected woman Trustee.”

Eric L. Shultz, a former Trustee who chose not to seek reelection in 2017, won back a place on the board on the Democratic line with 6,016 votes.

The board’s veteran chairman, Republican Edward J. Warner Jr., won reelection in fourth place, with 5,820 votes.

Republican incumbent Scott M. Horowitz came in fifth with 5,583 votes, edging out Republican Donald T. Law, who had 5,533, and Democratic candidate Andrew J. Brosnan, with 5,423, all cast on his single Democratic line.

Those three candidates finished within 1 percentage point of each other, with hundreds of absentee ballots still to be counted, so Democrats said they were hopeful that Mr. Brosnan could still eke out a win and oust Mr. Horowitz.

“It’s my honor to serve,” Mr. Schneiderman told the Democrats at the Silver Lining Diner late Tuesday night. “I love what I do and I look forward to coming in every day, and I feel like there’s a lot of things, a lot more things we can do.

“We talked about it on the campaign trail,” he added, “about creating affordable housing opportunities for our workforce, cleaning up our waterways, trying to deal with the costs of living and taxes, and all those things … We’re going to work together to make Southampton an even greater place.”

Mr. Bouvier told the crowd of buoyant party members, “We have a huge agenda ahead of us, and I hope you will all work with us. We’re going to make some changes. We’re going to do some other things. We’re going to put some people on boards — we’re going to do a lot of stuff to make things happen. So, stay tuned. I think it’s a really great thing that’s coming.”

Speaking to Republicans and Conservatives who had gathered at Salvatore’s, the former Hamptons Standard restaurant, in Hampton Bays, a victorious Mr. Martel commented, “I want to thank everybody who helped us out in the campaign. It was my first run, so I had to have a lot of guidance. Thank you to all my followers and my people who came out, and it was great to be recognized for the work that I’ve done for the community in the past, and I really appreciate it.

“I’ll be able to work with John and the Town Board and make some wonderful things happen for the Town of Southampton.”

In other local races, Theresa Kiernan easily won reelection as town tax receiver with 7,267 votes, compared to Democratic challenger and local party leader Gordon Herr’s 5,162. Gary J. Weber, who ran unopposed for reelection as a town justice, garnered 9,371 votes running on the Republican, Conservative, Working Families, Green and Independence lines.

In a county race with a local angle, attorney Andrea H. Schiavoni of North Haven, a Southampton Town justice since 2008 and the wife of Southampton Town Councilman Tommy John Schiavoni, won election as a Family Court judge with 138,460 votes on four party lines, as did her running mate Victoria Gumbs Moore of Wheatly Heights, who tallied 136,809 votes on the same four lines: Democratic, Conservative, Working Families and Independence.

Asked for comment Tuesday night on her unsuccessful race for Ms. Fleming’s county legislative seat, Ms. Kabot said, “It’s been a long campaign — eight and a half months. I’m glad to have put my name back out there. I’m glad to have participated in the process, and we move on.”

She added, “My numbers might not have been strong in East Hampton, and clearly that gives the incumbent the competitive edge, because East Hampton is more heavily enrolled Democratic and they might vote party line. But I’m happy that people from all walks of life across the political spectrum were supporting my candidacy, and they were voting for the person, not the party.”

Robin Long, the campaign manager for Southampton’s Democratic candidates, drew cheers for her unsuccessful candidates Mr. Catalanotto and Mr. Brosnan when she pointed out the thousands of votes they had collected with just one line on the ballot, the Democratic line.

“Right now I’m sad that I’ve left a couple of candidates behind — but I just want you to look at those numbers and take a little bit of pride, because there was a time, when Bridget Fleming and I were doing Bridget’s first campaign” — for county legislator in 2015 — “we were told, ‘Don’t say you’re a Democrat.’ Now we can say it out loud.”

“We’ve come so far,” said Democratic party leader Mr. Herr Tuesday night. In the first campaign he ran, in 2007, “we ran a full slate, but we had one win out of the whole slate. We’ve had incredible results since then. Not only are we now the major party of the town, but we have more registered Democrats in the town, which we never had before …

“Everyone should be proud of what this Town Board has done and what we’re going to achieve and what we continue to do.”

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Shame on you Robin Long and Gordon Herr! You are still scared to acknowledge a long time Democrat, as Eric Shultz. You like hiding behind third party candidates and not true Democrats.

By HamptonClassic (132), Southampton on Nov 6, 19 1:47 PM
1 member liked this comment
Congratulations to all those who were victorious and thank you to everyone who turned out to vote!
By MeganHeckman (1), Eastport on Nov 6, 19 3:07 PM
1 member liked this comment
Congratulations to all the winners, and thanks to all the candidates, win or lose, for caring enough to get in there and make the big effort. Not enough people take a serious interest in local government, so you are all valuable to us.
By Turkey Bridge (1979), Quiogue on Nov 6, 19 6:09 PM
Can you get them to pick up their signs, George?
By Draggerman (955), Southampton on Nov 6, 19 8:17 PM
2 members liked this comment
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By Ditch Bum (929), Water Mill on Nov 6, 19 7:24 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By SpeedRacer (160), Southampton on Nov 6, 19 7:38 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By dfree (818), hampton bays on Nov 7, 19 6:29 AM
Good election...
Please clean up ALL of your signs before this weekend. Talk about pollution, it is the scourge of Southampton. We enforce illegal signs and allow these.
Please clean up, you put them out... Thanks
By knitter (1941), Southampton on Nov 7, 19 11:01 AM
2 members liked this comment
Knitter - we are out there cleaning up. A lot of the material will be recycled as well. But, yeah, too many signs and we need clean them up.
By Craigcat (258), Speonk on Nov 7, 19 11:59 AM
Democratic sweep. Virginia, Kentucky, Indiana.... Americans are waking up to the Trump scourge. There's hope for democracy.
By Jolly Roger (31), Southampton on Nov 7, 19 11:19 AM
1 member liked this comment
President Trump will win in a landslide.
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Nov 7, 19 11:30 AM
Craigcat, thank you for your work. Hope all are like you. THANKS
By knitter (1941), Southampton on Nov 7, 19 12:16 PM
1 member liked this comment
We are still out there picking them up. Kindly let me know if you see more out there and we'll come get them.
I have a campaign website with my email address on it. I don't think I'm allowed to post it here.
Thank you
By Craigcat (258), Speonk on Nov 8, 19 8:10 AM
Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq hit record levels after China caves to President Trump this was the most awesome trade deal ever. It is ridiculously stupid not to join this no-brainer stock market rally. Bond sellers know this fact well today. President Trump is going to give us 5 more years of this beautiful stock mkt & economy.

Enjoy the gravy train while it’s here...
By joe hampton (3461), The Hamptons on Nov 7, 19 3:56 PM
What deal?
By Fore1gnBornHBgrown (8265), HAMPTON BAYS on Nov 7, 19 4:07 PM
Google it.
By Draggerman (955), Southampton on Nov 8, 19 7:40 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By themarlinspike (542), Northern Hemisphere on Nov 8, 19 8:12 AM
1 member liked this comment
Google it? You have excellent skills in trying to make a point.
Here’s a snippet from Bloomberg.....
Chinese officials are casting doubts about reaching a comprehensive long-term trade deal with the U.S. even as the two sides get close to signing a “phase one” agreement.
By Fred s (3321), Southampton on Nov 8, 19 8:49 AM
Keep rooting against our President.This would be good for our country but u don't care about that.Shame on u.
By Taz (725), East Quogue on Nov 8, 19 9:38 AM
Lol, no deal has been signed, but you all celebrate like it's in the books. It's funny and sad at the same time.
By Fore1gnBornHBgrown (8265), HAMPTON BAYS on Nov 8, 19 10:26 AM
1 member liked this comment
Fred, that wasn’t me trying to make a point. Just telling fore1 how to find the news he missed. It wasn’t a pro Trump comment.

I’m not a huge fan of DJT. I do, however, hope he succeeds in his trade endeavors. Unlike the left, that is praying that he, and Capitalist America, fails.
By Draggerman (955), Southampton on Nov 10, 19 10:10 AM
Her draggerman. No deal exists. Google it.
Nov 10, 19 10:18 AM appended by Fore1gnBornHBgrown
"Hey Draggerman"
By Fore1gnBornHBgrown (8265), HAMPTON BAYS on Nov 10, 19 10:18 AM
Draggerman, no big deal. No problem. I don’t want our country to fail at anything. But with trump behind the wheel, he’s doing 120 mph on a winding mountain road. It’s evident, he has no driver’s license. I’m no fan of trump, couldn’t stand him before he even ran for the presidency. He screwed many small contractors out of their money. He’s not a good man. Would you sing the praises of someone who screwed you out of a final payment?
By Fred s (3321), Southampton on Nov 10, 19 10:25 AM
@Draggerman: News flash: Capitalism is failing the majority of Americans.
By June Bug (2680), SOUTHAMPTON on Nov 10, 19 11:44 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By Turkey Bridge (1979), Quiogue on Nov 10, 19 2:15 PM
This is a story about the town election. How did we get on to national issues? Strictly speaking, all the comments since joe hampton detoured us into this national/world lane should be taken down as off-topic. One of the things I like about local politics is that it’s essentially divorced from most of the federal-level questions that make people so crazy these days. That is, until commenters like joe hampton and others hijack the thread and turn it into a shooting match about Donald Trump ...more
By Turkey Bridge (1979), Quiogue on Nov 10, 19 1:57 PM
2 members liked this comment
Couldn’t agree more
By CPalmer (122), Southampton on Nov 10, 19 6:36 PM