Debates Continue for June 23 Democratic Primary

Pictured Above: Democratic Congressional hopefuls Nancy Goroff, Perry Gershon, Bridget Fleming and Greg Fischer.

In addition to the Democratic presidential primary, primaries will be held June 23 for Democratic candidates seeking the party’s nomination to run against three-term incumbent Republican Congressman Lee Zeldin in New York’s First Congressional District, to run for the New York State Senate Seat to be vacated by veteran Republican State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle, and to run for State Assemblyman Anthony Palumbo’s Second Assembly District seat on the North Fork. 

Mr. Palumbo is the Republican nominee to run for Mr. LaValle’s State Senate Seat, and Riverhead Councilwoman Jodi Giglio is the Republican candidate for Mr. Palumbo’s seat.

Perry Gershon, the New York real estate financier who ran against Congressman Zeldin in 2018, returns to the congressional race, along with Stony Brook chemistry professor and department head Nancy Goroff and Suffolk County Legislator Bridget Fleming, who represents the South Fork and Shelter Island. 

Attorney and crime victims advocate Laura Ahearn; Brookhaven Town Councilwoman Valerie Cartright; Stony Brook University Hospital Registered Nurse and union representative Nora Higgins; 19-year-old Skyler Johnson, who helped found Students Act for Change and Southampton Town Councilman and social studies teacher Tommy John Schiavoni are vying for the Democratic nomination to seek Mr. LaValle’s State Senate seat.

Former Riverhead Town Supervisor Laura Jens-Smith and Viacom CBS Senior Live Events Coordinator Will Schleisner are running for the nomination for the North Fork’s Second State Assembly District.

New York State is mailing absentee ballot applications to all eligible voters to enable them to vote by mail if they do not want to risk going to the polls during the global pandemic.

To vote by absentee ballot, voters need to select “temporary illness” as the reason for their absentee vote, and either deliver it in person to the Suffolk County Board of Elections no later than the day before the election or mail the application back to the Suffolk County Board of Elections at P.O. Box 700, Yaphank, NY 11980, postmarked no later than seven days before the election. 

The absentee ballot application allows voters to request a ballot for the Nov. 3 general election at the same time.

In person voting will still be held on June 23 at voters’ regular polling places.

Early voting will also take place from Saturday, June 13 through Sunday, June 21. Voters can vote in any of the 13 early voting locations in Suffolk County, where a ballot will be printed for them based on their home voting district. 

The early voting locations on the East End include the Southold Senior Center at 750 Pacific Street in Mattituck, Stony Brook Southampton College at 70 Tuckahoe Road in Southampton,  the Riverhead Senior Center at 60 Shade Tree Lane in Aquebogue and Windmill Village at 219 Accabonac Road in East Hampton. Hours of voting vary; check for details. 

While in person debates for this spring’s Democratic primaries have been cancelled due to the coronavirus, the League of Women Voters of the Hamptons, Shelter Island & North Fork will hold two debates via Zoom in early June. 

The League’s congressional primary debate will be held on Monday, June 1 at 7 p.m. and the New York State Senate debate will be held on Monday, June 8 at 7 p.m.  Both will be aired on Southampton’s SEA-TV, which can be accessed through Southampton Town’s website, and will be posted on YouTube by SEA-TV.

The Southold Democrats held a Zoom State Senate primary debate on May 13 that can be viewed on YouTube.

Beth Young

Beth Young has been covering the East End since the 1990s. In her spare time, she runs around the block, tinkers with bicycles, tries not to drown in the Peconic Bay and hopes to grow the perfect tomato. You can send her a message at

One thought on “Debates Continue for June 23 Democratic Primary

  • June 6, 2020 at 12:01 pm

    Laura Ahearn is a huge liability to Suffolk County. PFML has proven to be a vigilante group whose abuses of power have led to numerous lawsuits and an increase of taxpayer costs to keep Ahearn’s controversial programs going. If you like political cronyism and status quo in Suffolk County, then vote Ahearn by all means. She’s already been endorsed by the likes of Dean Skelos and James Burke in the past, and she’s already extremely chummy with Steve Phoney Bellone-y.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please prove you're human:

%d bloggers like this: