Update 9:53 p.m.: Keith Brown has won election to the 12th Assembly District, defeating Democrat Michael Marcantonio.
Brown held a large lead on Election Night but with thousands of absentee ballots not counted until this week, some Democrats thought Marcantonio would overcome Brown.
“I am so humbled and pleased to be able to announce that I have been declared the winner and NYS Assemblyman-elect in the 12th Assembly District, formerly represented by Huntington Town Clerk Andrew Raia,” Brown said. “I want to thank my entire family, my colleagues and all the good folks that have supported me the past 9 months. I am so excited to get started and be a vigorous advocate for Long Islanders in the halls of our State Capitol. I am so looking forward to serving the people of the 12th Assembly District.”
Marcantonio conceded the race to Brown with a statement. “I just called Keith Brown to congratulate him on winning this hard-fought race and wish him the best of luck in representing the 12th Assembly District in Albany over the next two years. While all the votes have not yet been counted, it looks like we’re going to fall short by a margin of about 1-2%, making this the closest election for the 12th Assembly District in its history. Given that this was a Red Wave year in Suffolk County, the fact that we nearly won a seat that has been held by Republicans for over 50 years speaks volumes to the incredible campaign we ran.
“Though my campaign has concluded, my advocacy and love for this district has not. I am not going anywhere and I will continue to fight for Long Island,” he said.
Brown’s election will restore state legislative representation to Northport, which has been without an assemblyman since January when Republican Andrew Raia resigned after he was elected Huntington town clerk. In addition, State Sen. John Flanagan, who also represented the area, retired earlier this summer.
The Suffolk County GOP said, “Congratulations to Keith Brown, who has declared victory in the 12th Assembly District. Assemblyman-elect Brown has a strong record of supporting law enforcement, opposing tax increases and supporting education for our families.”
Marcantonio had previously tried to win the seat, running in 2018 against Raia but in August 2018. a judge ordered him removed from the ballot over state residency requirements.
Both Brown and Marcantonio are attorneys.
The Democrat was deeply involved in fighting a settlement proposed by the Long Island Power Authority over tax issues involving the Northport power plant, a deeply divisive issue in Huntington for more than a decade. The Town Board ultimately accepted the settlement in September. Marcantonio had vowed to continue fighting LIPA tax issues if he were elected to the Assemby.