“It’s definitely a mixed bag,” said Aisha Keller about the unofficial primary results. “I’m feeling really positive. I feel we really had a good showing in Rockland,” said Keller, the Working Families Party’s regional coordinator.
Incumbent Clarktown Town Board Members Frank Borelli and Shirley Lasker received the highest number of votes on the Working Families line – 44 and 36 respectively. There were 13 write-in votes. Town Clerk Justin Sweet won the Working Families line with 59 votes versus one write-in vote. County legislative district 11 candidate Bob Milone received a sizable majority of votes over write-ins, 28 to 15.
In the race for Clarkstown Highway Superintendent, Town Mnin Trans Supervisor Dennis Malone was seeking the Working Party's write-in votes against incumbent Wayne Ballard. There were 25 write-in votes and 39 votes for Ballard. Incumbent Clarkstown Town Judge Howard Gerber won the Independence party line by a slight margin over Antonio Reda of 127 to 125. There were three write-in votes for the race. But Reda received more write-in votes on the Working Families line than Gerber, 35 to 27 with two write-in votes also cast.
“I think it’s way too close to call,” said Gerber. “I think it’s disappointing the numbers are so low.”
Gerber along with many of his fellow candidates who received the Working Families endorsement, will wait for next Tuesday when absentee ballots are counted. Milone was pleased with the results of his first foray into politics.
“I’m happy that I’m in the lead,” said Milone. “There are some absentee ballots. We have to wait until they’re counted. I’m looking forward to November.”
Each candidate mentioned the importance of absentee ballots and how they planned to wait for the final vote tally. Borelli was cautiously optimistic.
“The results look good so far with the in-person voting,” said Borelli. “I’m happy with the election.”
Lasker, who has previously received the Working Families endorsement, was also pleased.
“I feel this is a vindication of everything the Working Families stand for,” she said. “I think we need to rebuild our working class and middle class.”
Sweet expressed satisfaction his efforts were recognized by the voters.
“I’ve been out there taking my message straight to the voters since March,” he said. It’s been resonating with the voters. I thank them for their support and hope for their vote in November.”
According to the Rockland County Board of Elections' unofficial results, 122 Working Families votes were cast.
A constant flow of candidates, elected officials and campaign supporters came and left the Working Families Rockland County Poll Watching Party at the American Legion in New City. Over the course of three hours, 40 to 50 people gathered discussing results, wishing each other good luck and talking about the November election. They included State Senator David Carlucci; Assemblyman Ken Zebrowski; Legislative Chairwoman and candidate Harriet Cornell; County Legislator Ed Day; Clarkstown Supervisor Alex Gromack; Clarkstown Councilmember Stephanie Hausner; County Family Court Judge candidate Ed Kallen; State Supreme Court Judge candidate Paul Marx; Clarkstown Democratic Committee Chair Nicole Doliner, and Rockland County Democratic Committee Chair Kristen Zebrowski Stavisky.
Working Families officials said they had to protect the line from another candidate who wanted to take it over and make it “Tea Party” and was not interested in working wages and benefits for the working class and middle class.
“We started this party saying we need to stand up for the middle class, the working class,” said Bob Master, party co-chair, noting some national changes since its founding in 1998. “Over the past 30 years we have seen our society grow more and more unequal.”