Huntington Democratic leader Frank Petrone says State Senate candidate Edmund Smyth has broken several campaigning rules, including acceptance of a larger donation than permitted, but the Republican denies the complaints and said he welcomes the attention to one of his projects.
Petrone, the former town supervisor who was recently elected Democratic chairman, said Smyth accepted a donation of $11,800 from Mattituck Environmental Services on Sept. 18, which Petrone said exceeds donations by incorporated entities and LLC’s at $5,000. Smyth, however, said that the donation was actually a personal donation, within the limits,and that the name of the company was printed on the check envelope.
Petrone also said that the Smyth campaign hadn’t reported the costs involving the rental of mobile billboard trucks and production costs of the signs mounted upon them. Smyth says the cost of the ads was disclosed and that he owns the trucks, meaning their use is an in-kind contribution from himself. He said his campaign spoke with the stte Board of Elections and followed their guidance.
The Democrat said that Smyth’s truck is parked in the empty lot at Main Street and Park Avenue and that represents an in-kind donation that the Republican should report, saying it was the equivalent of an in-kind donation. Smyth countered by saying the use of the space is “not commercial speech; it’s political and a property owner doesn’t have to disclose every time they put up a political sign to disclose it as an in-kind donation.”
But Smyth countered by saying that “nothing was made on government time. I paid for the artist to create the logo and paid for a print shop to do banners and signs. The town didn’t expend one penny. I welcome any attention that’s brought to this anti-litter campaign. The cause is a good one and I welcome any attention that’s brought to this anti litter campaign. With all that’s going on with lack of school funding and criminals being released from jails, I am surprised Frank Petrone is concerned about an anti-litter campaign.”
Standing by Christopher Columbus
Four Republican state Senate candidates and Sen. Phil Boyle of East Islip Tuesday condemned efforts to rename Christopher Columbus Day as Indigenous Peoples Day.
While the day represents an opportunity for Italian-Americans to express pride in their heritage and their community’s contribution to America, others cite the impact Columbus’s arrival had on the native peoples of North America, saying the Italian explorer committed genocide and forced native people into slavery.
Boyle was joined by the candidates, Anthony Palumbo (Assembly 1st District), Mario Mattera (2nd District), Alexis Weik (3rd District) and Edmund Smyth (5th District)to preserve the Columbus holiday and to celebrate Italian-American heritage. They called the move to change the name an insult to Italian-Americans.
The legislation was introduced by State Sen. Jessic Ramos, a Queens Democrat, and sponsored in the Assembly by Charles Barron.
The five Republican candidates object to what they say is an attempt to honor one group at the expense of another.
“As a proud Italian-American, I am totally opposed to any legislation that would attempt to erase the contributions of those who came before me. We must respect our collective history in a unified fashion without these political attempts to erase the accomplishments and significance of others. I implore everyone to understand the meaning of this day and reflect on the impact that Italian-Americans have had on the history of our great nation. To diminish that is an insult to all proud New Yorkers who take pride in their Italian heritage,” stated Mattera, the Republican, Conservative and Independence candidate for the 2nd Senate District.
“Columbus Day is an important holiday that in addition to honoring the legacy of Christopher Columbus, also highlights the vast contributions that Italian-American’s have made to our country over centuries. I strongly support continuing this important holiday, and maintaining Columbus statutes in our communities,” added Smyth, the 5th Senate District’s Republican, Conservative, Libertarian and Independence nominee.
The annual Huntington parade is filled with pride in the accomplishments of Italian-Americans, from groups honoring the late Capt. Kathy Mazza, a Port Authority officer killed on Sept. 11, 2001, to Marine Gunnery Sgt. John Basilone, who received the Medal of Honor at the battle of Guadalcanal during World War II but who was killed in the invasion of Iwo Jima, as well as recognition of the contributions of many Italian-American political leaders, scientists, artists and others.
The New York State Italian American Political Action Committee made the following endorsements Sunday, gathering at the statue of Christopher Columbus in Huntington for the announcement.
- US Rep. Thomas Suozzi
- NYS Senator Jim Gaughran
- NYS Senator Monica Monica R. Martinez
- NYS Assemblyman Steve Stern
- NYS Assemblyman Andrew Garbarino ( for Congress)
- Christine Pelligrino ( for State Senate)
- Mario Mattera ( for State Senate )
- Michael Marcantonio ( for Assembly)
Backed by Biden
State Sens. Jim Gaughran and Kevin Thomas won endorsements Tuesday from Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.
“I am very proud to have earned Vice-President Biden’s support, and am honored that he has endorsed my re-election for State Senate,” Gaughran said. “Long Island communities are being failed by Washington’s disastrous policies and their failed COVID-19 response, and it is imperative that New York maintain a Democratic State Senate to protect New Yorkers. I am running to help Long Islanders move past the COVID-19 pandemic, protect our environment, and keep our communities safe from senseless gun violence. With Joe Biden in the White House, our country will be able to move past the disastrous federal COVID-19 response that failed our nation and left more than 210,000 Americans dead.”
Going After Democratic Senators
Billionaire Ron Lauder has spent more thn $1 million on ads to defeat Democrats running for the State Senate, according to website NY State of Politics. The ads target State Sens. Monica Martinez, Jim Gaughran, Kevin Thomas and Andrew Gounardes.