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Martins Grabs Second Term As NYS Senator

Current senator, former Mineola mayor beats out Manhasset resident to take 7th senate district

Two years ago, the race for the 7th Senate District seat in New York State was mired in back and forth rhetoric matches, “truth conferences,” multiple rallies and ballot recounts coupled with a lawsuit contesting the results. Then-incumbent Craig Johnson and challenger Jack Martins battled into December, with the former Mineola mayor being declared victor by a 451-vote margin just before Christmas.

This time around the race, although tension-heightened from dark-horse Democratic challenger Daniel Ross, Martins (R-Mineola) came away relatively unscathed, winning his second term as senator on Tuesday, Nov. 6. Martins garnered 52 percent of the vote beating out Ross (D-Manhasset) 48,305-44,707.

In 2010, Martins’ nose-hair victory decided the senate majority, giving Republicans a 32-30 stronghold in the senate chamber in Albany. He attained the Republican, Conservative, Independent and Tax Revolt Party endorsements this time around, while Ross nabbed the Democratic and Working Family Party lines leading up to Election Day.

There were some technical glitches at a number of polling stations in Nassau County, with the Nassau County Board of Elections (BOE) stating about 4 percent of voters were affected. A similar situation occurred in 2010, when 1 percent was forced to fill out paper ballots.

BOE officials said the chance of the problems affecting this election were slim to none. The deadline to submit absentee ballots was extended to Nov. 17 because of Hurricane Sandy, according to the BOE website.

“Going into Election Day, it wasn’t about the election,” Martins said continuing, “it was about the recovery from the storm and the consequences of the storm and our efforts continue to this day. I’m very happy to have gotten re-elected; very pleased at the support I got. I’m looking forward to continue to work with my colleagues in addressing the issues that are affecting New York State.”

Martins stated he couldn’t compare this race to his tussle with Johnson.

“This election was far different than two years ago,” Martins said. “We didn’t go into Election Day [this year] campaigning, we went into Election Day responding to a natural disaster, which is where we should have been frankly. That’s where the priorities were. It’s hard to compare and contrast because with the Johnson race, there were real choices. There was some clear distinction and we each had a record to run on and a record we had to defend.”

Ross, an automobile sales manager, ran for commissioner of the Manhasset-Lakeville Water and Fire District. He lost the race last year to Andrew DeMartin.

“The senate race was a great experience and a hard fought race,” Ross said. “I want to congratulate my opponent on his re-election, but it was a hard fought race and has given me additional insight and experience I did not have prior so I was very thankful for the opportunity to run. I was excited at the prospect of serving the community as a state senator.”

Ross noted that this may not be his last run to elected office, however he would not indicate if he’d run against Martins in 2014 or seek other options. He called his run at the seat a “mutual interest” for himself and the Democratic Party in tapping him to seek office.

“This race was run to win,” said Ross. “Unfortunately it didn’t happen. We were very, very close. I appreciate the support I got from everyone. This was not just an experiment. We’re going to go back at it. I am exploring all options but certainly not ruling anything out at this point.”